What could it be like?

For those of you (and there are many) not fortunate enough to visit Washington, DC and ride the Metro, here’s what you’re missing.

Granted, it doesn’t go everywhere like the NYC subway does.  And you have to pay based on how far you ride.  Otherwise, the Metro is beautiful.

Just look in this video at things like the platform that lights up and blinks when a train is arriving.  The clean stations.  The clean trains.

I’m just saying.  We should demand better for New York.

Feel free to link to other nice subway videos in the comments.  We’d love to see them.

Obnoxiously Long Commute this Morning

Wow did it take for ever to get to work this morning.

There were some pretty significant delays on the 1 train last night because of signal problems at 96th Street.  The trains were running excessively slow.  At one point, it took 10 minutes just to get to the next stop.  We were rolling the whole time, but at a pace that I could have matched on foot without breaking a sweat.

So this morning, I don’t know if they were still recovering or what.  There were huge gaps between trains.  The trains themselves ran quickly when they finally arrived.

Then there was the largest single travel group I’ve ever seen trying to board the train.  On the Upper West Side, there are a lot of less expensive boutique hotels, so groups of foreign travelers (and students) often stay there.  So you see the groups of them all the time.  Sometimes they can get large, but nothing like this.

There had to be over 150 of them.  Mostly they seemed to be around 18 years old.  I couldn’t make out where they were from.  They sounded sort of Dutch?  I don’t know.  What I do know is there was a ton of them.

Any other day when there are delays like this, the train arrives at the station packed to the gills.  Only 2 or 3 people are able to get on at each doorway, even though there are lots of people waiting at the platform.  So then, throw in this mass of tourists, and you’ve got complete insanity.

They’re still probably standing there waiting to get on.  There’s absolutely no way they were getting more than 10 of their people on a train at a time.  Of course, none of them wanted to do that.  They looked like they were just going to keep waiting until a virtually empty train came along.  Good luck with aaaallll that.

Railfan Porn

I know I’m a big subway geek and all.  I mean, this is a three year old blog about the subway.  So I’d say I’m ranking up there in world of subway geekdom.

Some people are on a whole different level, though.

http://www.viddler.com/player/8ed6585e/

Kinda cool, right?  Somehow this cam was mounted on the front of a 7 train or just inside a front window.

But then notice that it’s something like 48 minutes long.  Wow.  That’s dedication.  Scary, but dedicated.

The AC Turned Off Early?

I feel like the air conditioning on a lot of subway trains was turned off too early.

Honestly, I have no idea how the AC works on the trains.  Don’t know if there is a thermostat or what, but I feel like the AC was cut.  Seems to happen every year.

There was a bit of a cold snap a week ago, so there wasn’t much need for too much AC.  So I think it was cut off on many trains.  Then late last week, it warmed up again, but the AC wasn’t turned back on.

It really gets oppressively hot when theirs no air on the trains.  The heat is one thing, but then it feels like the oxygen in the air is getting thing.  Kind of a panic situation if you are at all claustrophobic.

Heavy Breathers

This is a second-hand story that I will retell now.  I’m sure many of you will be able to relate.

I was speaking to a lady friend the other night, and she was telling me how she hates heavy nose breathers on the subway.

She’s not very tall.  Average height I guess.  However, when she’s in a crowded train in front of a taller guy, she often finds herself under his nose.

Not all up in his biznass, but close enough that they are literally breathing down her neck.  Some of them apparently breath out of their noses like they just got finished running the marathon.

I’d say that ranks up there in the grossness meter.  I don’t think I would be able to have some big dude breathing on my neck or head for an entire ride.

I haven’t experienced this myself, but I guess it is pretty common.

Photo

Trains that Bypass Stations…”Beep Beep”

When was the last time you were waiting on the platform for what seemed like an eternity only to have the next train blow right past you?

I’ve witnessed it a lot lately.  At least 3 times in the last 5 days actually. Luckily for me, I was already on board the train doing the bypassing.  So my local train got to run express for a few stops.  Honestly, it feels awesome.

It totally sucks though if you’re the one on the platform.

Sometimes, the trains get so backed up that there are massive gaps between trains.  So, the train dispatchers instruct the trains to skip stops in order to catch up and spread the load out.  It will slow down as it approaches the station and beep the horn in two short bursts.  That’s the sound of you getting screwed.

In most cases, there’s another train a minute behind the one that just blew past you (like they say in the announcements).

Have you witnessed it a lot lately?

PHOTO CREDIT

Welcome Home Kids

The kids are back on the train.  They’re back from their summers in the Hamptons, and they look excited…haha.

Schools in the city have officially started, so students are back with us on the platforms in the morning.

It’s fun to watch the high school dynamics.  It’s like a flashback for me.  They cluster in little groups.  The hot chicks in one group, with the obligatory gay guy friend.  The punk rock kids in as much black as possible.  Cracks me up.

The trick is figuring out how to avoid the train door they are going to use.  They’ll only get on the train if they can all fit at once.  So you don’t want to be caught in the middle of that for an entire ride.

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend.

Anyone have some Double Mint gum?

A funny improv mob hit the 6 train to create the human mirror.

Fifteen sets of twins, dressed identically, boarded a train and sat directly across from each other.  They mimicked each other’s every move.  They then waited for people on the train to notice the real life human mirror, then taped their reactions.

Pretty funny.  That would be pretty freaky to see in person.  I would probably have stood there for five minutes or more before realizing it.  The whole time though knowing that “something is strange here…but I can’t quite put my finger in it.”

Metrofart T-Shirts?

Ahhh the joy of reader emails.  This one goes in the classic pile:

Hello SubwayBlogger!

Hopefully you’ll get a kick out of the new MetroFart t-shirt, just made available on DiggerTees.com.

A recent trip on the 6 train inspired this t-shirt design; I jumped on the train at 33rd street, to head home to the UES. I immediately detected a foul odor from the passenger standing next to me…only for the doors to open at the 42nd street stop, and an even fouler odor wafted in from the platform. It was unreal…

…but hey, we all come out of this winners, we now can proudly sport the new MetroFart t-shirt!