Snackman: New York City’s snack-eating subway hero a Web hit

Claudine Zap
Claudine Zap
The Upshot

Just a few days ago, Charles Sonder was an ordinary Everyman, who simply liked to enjoy a salty snack on the subway. Today, he's got a Facebook page, Web buzz, and a nickname: Snackman.

The 24-year-old was captured on video munching cheddar Pringles while stepping in to break up a fight between two fellow riders of the No. 6 train.

The clip shows Sonder calmly walking between the two to diffuse the situation, not missing a munch. The two stopped fighting. And yes, a hero was born.

YouTube views have grown to over 850,000. And a feeding frenzy of Yahoo! searches for "snackman" and "snackman breaks up fight" jumped in just one day.

Turns out the young, handsome Snackman works for an architecture firm by day (able to design buildings in a single bound?) when he's not patrolling the subway with chip-filled hands.

The supercool superhero told the local New York City website DNAInfo that he had boarded the uptown train at Spring Street on his way to midtown around 9 at night when a man and a woman began yelling and kicking each other.

"That's when I stepped between them and just stood there," he said, while continuing to pop Pringles and gummi bears, adding  "I didn't think of anything else to do."

The six-foot-tall Rhode Island native has lived in New York City for about two yearsand he's certainly made his mark. But the subway hero is supermodest, too: Said New York's crunching crime fighter to CBS 2, "It's cool to be thought of as maybe some kind of superhero, but I just didn't want to see anyone get hurt."