Posts tagged transit notes
Transit notes

Some people like to make a lot of noise when they get on the train—usually teenagers, but not always. Some people just want to be noticed, I suppose, or poke a hole in the air you're sharing. Same with playing loud music in a car with the windows rolled down: "I am here." Or, in the immortal words of Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction, "I won't be ignored, Dan."

Tonight a man and a woman boarded at the 57th Street station, both a little raggedy-looking. Like times were hard. He was carrying an enormous wrinkled shopping bag, the kind that discount mall Santas lug their presents around in. They couldn't find seats together so they settled about ten feet apart and hollered back and forth to each other all the way to Columbus Circle, with him rooting around in that bag on the floor the whole time, clearly not finding what he needed. At Columbus Circle they both made their move to the open seats at one end of the car, opposite each other. She spread out and stretched her feet across the seat next to her and he shuffled through his bag again, pulled out a book, and handed it to her across the aisle.

Look at the light
Full up today!copy.jpg

I stayed home from work yesterday because I've had trouble sleeping lately: something about the switch from summer to autumn, from the drone of the air conditioner to an open window and sounds from the street, and all the light coming in, it takes time for me to adjust. So I was too exhausted to function and thought I'd be able to sleep during the day, except I checked the news and knew I would never fall back to sleep. I turned on CBS This Morning and Gayle King was on the phone with one of the hosts from The Highway, since we broadcast from the Route 91 Harvest Festival every year, and he was talking about what it was like to hide behind the stage when the shooting started, and later what it was like to step over bodies, looking for people who could still be helped. After a while we got an email from HR, letting us know the people we work with were all safe.

I don't know. Las Vegas is one of my favorite places in the world. I've had some of my best vacations there, and some of my best memories: the thought of it brings me nothing but joy. And I don't understand how we just keep going on like this, why nobody has the courage to fix what is so obviously broken, why we are so willing to sacrifice body after body after body after body after body after body to the men who hold the money behind these machines. I don't know how we all don't just walk around screaming all the time, but we don't, somehow. Of course we don't. And every story we tell ourselves about the great American experiment has to start and end with this: We the People of the United States, are not brave enough—are not strong enough—do not care enough—to fix what is broken. We don't even care enough to try.

I keep wondering if I should start a weekly newsletter to share these and other important thoghtz but A) I already have this cool blog & B) I don't suppose anyone wants to read an email that's just the word FUUUUCK over and over and over. 

The morning bus
Another Monday, another empty bus copy.jpg

Two M10s arrived together this morning and I hopped the second one because I'm no fool. Second buses are historically empty and this was no different:  besides the driver and me there was another MTA employee and one passenger. The other passenger got off at 81st and I rode all the way to Columbus Circle in perfect silence (well, I'm also not a psychopath, I was listening to Pop Culture Happy Hour's fall film preview the whole time). This entire event was a real departure from last week, when the rear of the bus was filled with hordes of terrible parents and worse children who exhibited zero understanding of interior volume control. Guess which scenario I prefer.