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Friday, November 30, 2012

Negotiating on the Train

Last night heading home from North Station, the train was packed! I walked all the way to the last car before I found a seat. Some guy who had mistaken the train for Southwest Airlines, was sitting on an aisle seat and had the window available. He was talking on the phone so I interrupted him. He looked at me like I had six heads. I thought "Screw you buddy. You're letting me sit. I have a 45 minute ride ahead of me and I'm not standing! Plus I want to read my book." Instead of saying what I thought, I smiled and asked "Can I sit down please?" He got up hastily and allowed me to take the window seat.

Once I got situated, the conductor comes in and screams "If you are in a three seater and the middle seat is empty, MOVE IN!" People slide in but this one woman refuses to slide in. Explaining that she is claustrophobic and doesn't want to slide in. The conductor comes over and says if she is claustrophobic, she can stand and let two people sit. She didn't like that and starts negotiating with the person who is aligned with her seat and should be the one sitting down. "How about you sit in the middle and then at the next stop we switch. We can take turns?" Everyone looks at HER like she has six heads. Really? You're going to make someone switch off every other stop from middle to aisle. What if this person wants to read or set up their laptop? That's just not conducive at all.

The conductor then became a mediator. He turns to the person standing "Would you mind taking the middle instead of the aisle?" The woman is still trying to negotiate "Where are you getting off? I don't want to get up to let you off if you get off before me." Ok, you lost me lady. Didn't you just say you wanted to switch off every other stop? Now you don't want to let this guy out if he happens to get off before you? Now your just crazy.

The conductor turns to the guy in the aisle "Take the middle seat." He turns to the woman "Tickets and passes please!" Obviously this conductor wasn't going to deal with this ladies crap and rightly so!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Missed My Train! But the Bright Side is, I Didn't Die!

This morning I missed my train! Not because I was late, because it was early! I parked, paid for parking, walked up the hill and the train was already coming in to the train station. I had to heed my own advice and not run or cross in front of it. It was so aggravating watching it pull into the station and block me and then I have to watch everyone board on the other side while I was stuck on the side of the train that wasn’t opening its doors. Because the train was early, it didn’t leave right away, it left on time. So, after everyone boarded, they waited! THANKS for waiting! You made it so that I was stuck on the wrong side and now I have to look at the train I need to be on even longer than I have to and fester while I can’t do anything about it. I contemplated crawling under the train on the rubber crossing. There is about a 3 foot gap between the ground and the bottom of the train. I sooo could have done it BUT then I thought “What if I am under there and the train starts to go? Now you’re just being an idiot!” The train finally left the station and I could cross. The next train wasn’t for another 35 minutes.

Why couldn’t they have stopped 50 feet back and let the people cross before pulling in to the train station early and blocking the people who were there on time from getting on the train? Huh? Maybe next time Mr. Train Engineer, you should do that!

Friday, November 23, 2012


I love when noncommuters ride the train! The commuters generally keep to themselves, bury their head in books,  kindles and blackberries but the noncommuters, full of energy it seems.

Wednesday when I was heading home on the 3:10 train, I noticed I was surrounded by people with luggage and most of those people were coupled up or had kids in tow. Not a usual train ride for me. I hop on the train and start to grab my book when I hear some girl say to a stranger in the seat across from her "Can you watch my stuff? My boyfriend is lost and I don't want to lose this seat for us." I am intrigued. I look up to see a young girl with luggage asking an older woman to watch her things. I am pretty sure everyone around me was shocked. I was waiting for the cameras to pop out from the show "What Would You Do?" Did this girl really just ask a perfect stranger on a train, in a large city, to watch her things?

The older woman cautiously agrees to watch her things. However, I watched the older woman, she did not watch this girls things for the entire time she was gone. This woman chit chatted with her seat mate, looked out the window (away from the girls belongings). I don't know about you, but if I was responsible for someone else's stuff, I'd watch it like a hawk. There is no way I would want something to turn up missing on my watch!

The girl finds her boyfriend and makes it back safely and her belongings are still there in one piece.

Once this is done, I return to my book. However, a young couple slides in behind me and is talking loudly so I can't focus on my book anymore. The boyfriend is briefing his new girlfriend on his family. I feel like I am in an episode of Jersey Shore. "My Ma wears hot things like sweatpants and stiletto's. She's really cool ya know." The girl giggles. "My Gramma! Oh my god! When you meet my Gramma, she's gonna tell you" he pitches his voice up so high he sounds like he's the big bad wolf trying to imitate Gramma "'He's my favorite Grandson! He's just the best.' Ya, my Gramma LOVES me YO!" the girl giggles again. Mean while, I am rolling my eyes while looking at my book pretending to read. The girl finally says something "I hope she loves me too then." The guy goes "Anyone who I make a career out of lovin', she'll love." The girl gets feisty, "A Career? I'm a career?"

"A relationship yo! A relationship! We have a relationship yo! You know what I mean yo." he says trying to console her but I don't know how that's consoling when you throw three yo's into one statement. She is calm now (I guess when you're Jersey Shore wannabe's, "Yo" is a soothing word.) "Good because I'm gonna marry you some day." I roll my eye again and bury my head in  my book desperately trying to tune them out. After 45 minutes of them doing some Jersey Shore canoodling made me THANKFUL to get off at my stop as they kept canoodling all the way to the last train stop!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Haste Makes Waste

To further my point as to why you don't run or don't try to beat the train, I myself expeienced this one. I'm running my ticket through the card reader at State when I hear that the train towards Oak Grove is arriving. I decide not to put my card back in my wallet and run for the train.I make it and am very proud of myself right now. I spot a seat which never happens. I take a seat and try to one handedly put my card back in my card case. My soda is in the other hand so this is tricky. The train takes off and my cards go flying! I panic and throw my soda between my legs as there are no cups holders on the T. I'm pretty sure everyone sitting across from me saw my under garments. I furiously collect my cards hoping I have them all. I am also hoping no one tries to "help" me. I make sure that I have my train pass, my I.D. and my capital one gold card because I know life will stop if I don't have those. I sit back on the seat and verify that I have each and every card bfore I get off the T. I did all this in hopes of catching the 510 train home. Wouldn't ya know, I miss the 510 by one minute.              

Monday, November 12, 2012

Almost Get Hit By the Train! Oh, and Happy Veterans Day!

OH! MY! GOD!! Don’t try to beat the train in order to make it. You will lose… or come close to losing.

Let’s explain my new train stop in case you aren’t familiar with it. North Billerica. You can park on the outbound side but once you get up to the train tracks, there isn’t a nice little bridge that goes over the tracks to get you to the inbound side. On NO! You must cross the tracks. It is set up with a nice rubberized path. However, the tracks stick out just a little so you must be careful when crossing. There is also a nice little warning bell at the crossing so that if you don’t see the train coming, you can hear that it’s on its way. (Pictured below you can see the rubberized path for crossing)

Now, this morning a man coming up from the outbound side realized he was going to miss the train if he didn’t get across. The alarm goes off way before he gets to this rubberized path. I look to my left to see the inbound train coming to pick us up. When I look back at this man he is full out sprinting. He has his dress shoes on that are obviously not made for sprinting. He gets to the path and the train is about 100 feet away now. As he is on the path he loses his balance and FALLS! Yes, he falls!

The crowd gasps, some running to his rescue. Others screaming “Get up! Get up!” I hear a few “Oh my gods!” sprinkled in there too. The train is now only 50 feet away and I am thinking this guy is a goner. The train’s horn is blaring.  I nearly drop my coffee and close my eyes praying that I am not going to witness what I think I am going to witness.

At the very last moment, this guy rolls out of the way and off the track. “Are you ok?” I hear people screaming. “Are you hurt?” another one screams. Someone replies “Only his ego is hurt today!” It’s safe to open my eyes and I look over and the guy is brushing himself off and is shaking like a leaf.

Please learn from this guy’s mistake. Don’t run in front of a train in order to catch it. I don’t care if you’re going to be late for work. I am pretty sure you’d rather still have your life and have to deal with an angry boss/client/whatever than to be dead! You’re better safe than sorry. There is always another train that will come along.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Voting Day

I woke up this morning with great anticipation! I was finally going to vote for who I want for the next four years. I got dressed for work, brewed my coffee and was out the door to go wait in line. This morning was quite the turn out at the polls making me hopeful that the outcome of this election is a great one. 

Many went before work today to cast their ballots and make sure they got theirs in! As I showed up for the train at 9:23, I figured I'd be one of the few stragglers to go in to the city but I was wrong. I was there with a slew of people with "I Voted" stickers on their jackets heading to Boston.

All day I have been anxiously awaiting the results and for dinner, I will be having Champagne. I know I will not know the outcome but I figure it's an early celebration or an early drowning of the sorrows. Cheers!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Lucy Desi Comedy Hour on the Train

So, last night on my ride home on the Commuter Rail, I felt like I was in the middle of the Lucy Desi Comedy Hour! As I am sitting in my seat, others are boarding including a couple that was clearly mad at each other. The girl keeps heading down the aisle while the guy spots a seat they both can sit in. He starts screaming in another language. I have no idea what he is saying. However, I know he wants her to sit with him as he is pointing to the seat. She screams back and I hear “Blah Blah Blah Pendejo” (I pick right up on Pendejo and now I know they are speaking Spanish.) Then he screams back at her and furiously points at the seat. Meanwhile, everyone is piling up behind the guy as he is blocking the aisle.

The guy then points to the stack of people behind him and screams “Blah Blah Blah Punta Blah Blah Blah” (Why do I only know swear words in Spanish?) Well, not liking the fact that he just called her a “Punta” in front of an entire train car of people, she storms off down the aisle and into the next train car. The guy sits down in the seat he already picked and the couple sat separated the remainder of the ride. I was glad she stormed off. I didn’t want to hear them fight for 45 minutes or they’d have some “‘Splaining to dooooooo”