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November 8th, 2005


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10:44 am
I think I need a T icon now. It's getting that bad.

Three times this past week the Red Line train I've been riding has had "door problems." On Friday my homeward train was magically turned into an Express Train to Harvard from Park Street, simply because the right-hand doors along the entire train weren't working. So long, Charles, Kendall and Centralsuckers! Those of us who exit on the left are SAVED! I sure hope they shunted the train onto the correct track at Alewife.

Things got even better yesterday and today. My morning commutes have been interrupted horrendously -- once in Harvard, today in Davis. Ten, fifteen, twenty minutes go by while they empty out the offending car, reshuffle the customers into other cars, and then wait until Sully gets back from Dunkies aboveground with new coffee. Then two guys get on the intercom at the same time at every stop. One man, whom we shall call Mr. Helpful Mans, says things like "The second car is not in service, please use another car." This lets the customers know that the second car is not in service, and that they should use another car if they wish to travel on this train. The other man, who sounds amazingly like the "THERE ARE NO SERVICE" guy from a few months back, does nothing but holler "THE SECOND CAR IS ISOLATED! THE SECOND CAR IS ISOLATED!" which lets the customers know that... uh, that the second car is, uh, isolated. Really, as far as helpfulness and obfuscation-eschewing goes, it's about as helpful as singing the theme to The Jetsons at them.

I love my scrappy little city by the hahbah, but golly do I feel ashamed when I think of the public transportation system we've got and the mess it's in. Such wasted potential mired knee-deep in bureaucracy and ineptitude! Such a black eye on an otherwise ... well, slightly pristine reputation! Folks should say "We can go anywhere, we've got the T!" rather than "We can't go there, cause we'd have to take the T." Oh, for the loss of innocence! You should've seen our fresh faces back around 1997 or so, spritely flitting through trains both underground and above, while An American In Paris-like music danced about. Now we simply scowl after being shoehorned into a seat between two seat hogs, pretending to sleep so as to avoid eye contact with our fellow purgatorians.

Alas for Danny G! Alas for humanity!

(20 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


From:eclecticavatar
Date:November 8th, 2005 04:52 pm (UTC)
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However... we HAVE a public transportation system. Try living in most of Appalachia, the Midwest or the south and good luck getting anywhere without a car!

I take my lumps and smile politely, trying to always recall that fact, having experienced how the other half lives.
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From:derspatchel
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:20 pm (UTC)
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I've been in that situation, too. Back in the days of the Valley when all I had was a bike and a sometimes-working headlamp and enjoyed my midnight rides down Route 9. And frankly if I didn't have to be places at "reasonable" times at night, I'd just hoof it to and fro every day. It's only like 6 miles. I'd get me a new pair of shoes and an umbrella for those bad days, and then I'd get back those calves to die for.

But I shouldn't have to, because the framework is in place for a functional transit system. That's what irks me the most.
From:revolution724
Date:November 8th, 2005 06:37 pm (UTC)
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I was just going to say - dude, I grew up in Atlanta. I just feel lucky as to have a moderately functional public transportation system. The T makes MARTA look like... um... I don't know, but it's in a third-world country somewhere.
From:eclecticavatar
Date:November 8th, 2005 06:38 pm (UTC)
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Amen! Lexington Kentucky had a bus system that was supposedly really good but barely got you anywhere and the schedules were so crazy that it was easier to walk than try to go from one side of the city to the other.
[User Picture]
From:r_ness
Date:November 8th, 2005 04:54 pm (UTC)
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T is for Toy.

(Inspired by frotz, who grumbles a lot about the T being a toy system.)
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From:surrealestate
Date:November 8th, 2005 04:55 pm (UTC)
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From:orionsmom
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:36 pm (UTC)
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hahahahaha! What a great icon for this situation! I love it!
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From:r_ness
Date:November 8th, 2005 04:56 pm (UTC)
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You should've seen our fresh faces back around 1997 or so, spritely flitting through trains both underground and above

The T was better in 1997? Really?
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From:derspatchel
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:24 pm (UTC)
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Maybe so. Maybe not. But in the wide eyes of a fresh-off-the-farm-boat youth, them trains were magical.

Perhaps the scales have fallen off the rose. Most likely.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:36 pm (UTC)
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That makes sense.

I mean, the T beats the snot out of the nonexistent transit in most of the US. On the other hand, compared to Montreal or New York...well, let's not.
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From:r_ness
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:37 pm (UTC)
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Oops. That was me.
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From:allicat42
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:12 pm (UTC)
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Um. It's STILL better than MARTA.
From:revolution724
Date:November 8th, 2005 06:38 pm (UTC)
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HA! I posted above before I saw this! Amen.
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From:allicat42
Date:November 8th, 2005 09:13 pm (UTC)
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I grew up in middle-of-nowhere Connecticut. Went to school in Boston. Back home to CT. Been in Atlanta for 5 years. MARTA is only good for things like cheap (aka FREE) parking for sporting events and day-tripping Dragon*Con... Oh, and occasionally getting to and fromt he airport. However, the long-term parking MARTA lots are few and far between. Wah.
From:mhaille
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:16 pm (UTC)
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Four words:
Pushing Virgins Towards Amherst.

I'll take the T over that.
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From:lexinatrix
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:45 pm (UTC)
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Word.
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From:muffyjo
Date:November 8th, 2005 05:31 pm (UTC)
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The tune of "Charlie of the MBTA" comes to mind...
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From:plumtreeblossom
Date:November 8th, 2005 06:11 pm (UTC)
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From:derspatchel
Date:November 8th, 2005 06:19 pm (UTC)
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IF THE TERRISTS WIN, IT'S YOUR FAULT FOR NOT SAYING ANYTHING
[User Picture]
From:plumtreeblossom
Date:November 9th, 2005 12:27 am (UTC)
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WE *ARE* THE TERRORISTS, POOPHEAD
HURR HURR HURR

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