We took a subway ride on our way home from the American Museum of Natural History. We stopped at the Port Authority stop, where I go almost every day and have never really had a problem before. We wanted to get some dinner, so we took a different exit (8th Ave & 40th) than I have in the past. It was probably the scariest 50 feet of NYC that I've seen yet.
My first thought was that the tunnel leading from the subway to the street felt weird. This is a pretty popular subway stop, but there was basically no one going this way. Soon after you start walking down the tunnel, you're greeted by this very shady looking video store. (Really? who uses video stores anymore?) Plus, most of the front windows were covered up. I didn't want to look too much more into it, so we tried to hurry past it.
Right next to the video store, there's stairs leading up to the exit. Again, these were empty save for two people at the top of the stairs. They were acting kind of weird, and I was sure they were drunk or high or something, so we tried to hurry past them on the other side of the tunnel. We had barely past them when they started yelling and throwing punches at each other.
My wife said one of them hit the other one and knocked him down the stairs. I didn't see that because I was focused on avoiding the homeless guy crawling around on the street in front of us while mumbling and picking up fries. (Manhattan street fries? I'm sure that's safe). We hurried past him and the other homeless hecklers and made it to the main street where there were a lot more people.
Interesting adventure, at least I know to avoid that exit now.