I was part of a mini-drama on the subway today.
A small child had three helium balloons on strings as she waited for the train (at Times Sq-42nd Street)
As I got about three feet away from two NYPD officers, her balloons brushed against something sharp and burst. All three. One after another.
With the platform being such a long and deep space, the sounds were amplified, and truly sounded like three successive gun shots.
The NYPD officers freaked out, pulled the guns from their holsters and shouted "Everybody stay calm"
After a few seconds, the cops figured out what had happened, and the entire subway platform burst into hysterics.
One of the two cops, who clearly had a good sense of humor said "It's ok folks, all the perpatrator has now is a string"
PS - I love living in New York.