On November 17, 2014, MTA board member Charles Moerdler stated “I’d like to ban them, frankly”, while speaking of people carrying backpacks on the subway.
One could say the MTA was overdue for proposing something completely stupid. Fortunately for them I’ll happily remind them of what happens when they propose completely ridiculous things.
The main problem with this backpack idea is the victim blaming. Ridership on NYC’s subways continues to grow, and the service is absolutely not scaling with growth. 8 to 12 minute wait times during rush hour are routine. When the train does show up, it’s packed, and it moves slow if it moves at all. At least once a week there seems to be a catastrophic service change during the height of rush hour. The infrequenty, slow service results in stations like 59th & lex, that are packed to a point of being dangerous. Homeless people can be found all over the system these days, laying on seats and carrying carts full of junk during rush hour. Kids swipe people’s phones all day, and never seem to get caught. We are basically back to the service experience of the 1970s, only without the graffiti.
Maybe the MTA should focus on fixing the tracks and increasing service instead of talking down to its customers.
Maybe the MTA should focus on fixing the tracks and increasing service instead of talking down to its customers. Yes, people should be careful not to bump people around with their bags. Yes they should take them off and hold them if it is really crowded… but what’s next? Banning wheelchairs? Banning baby strollers? Service animals? And who is going to enforce this ban? Is the MTA going to hire a few thousand cops to put on bag patrol? (Here’s a hint: increasing service would probably cost less).
School kids have to carry books in bags. NYC’s high schools don’t generally offer bus service, and a student in any boro can go to specialized schools anywhere in NYC. Workers have to carry laptops, and frugal workers such as myself carry their lunch and other work supplies in a bag. People carry gym bags. Bags are a way of life in NYC. Just like nathans hot dogs and jaywalking. Good luck trying to change that. It’ll never happen.
Let me ask this: If I can’t carry a bag on the subway, is the MTA going to pay for my lunch every day? Is it going to buy me a second and third laptop to leave at my clients offices?
The answer is No. Just the same, the public’s answer to this ridiculous ban idea is No.
It’s bad enough you want to charge more every 2 years for this garbage ‘service’ – now you want to play dictators and tell us what we can and cannot carry? The answer is No.
Starting immediately, we can all start voicing our disgust via social media. Go ahead, use and abuse hashtag #MTAOffMyBack, and we’ll make sure these clueless clowns get the message. If they don’t, maybe we need a million backpack commute in protest. (Oh wait – that happens every day).
The solution is more trains, not more unenforceable, completely ridiculous rules.
On the northeast border of Astoria, there is a forest covered urban mountain whose origins are shrouded in mystery. This would make a great location for a very unique new park. Unfortunately though, this forest and ‘mountain’ may be bulldozed soon.
Thus past weekend, the legendary Jeff Stark organized a party that was held in the Chinatown segment if the second avenue subway. The NYPD is likely to arrest him and potentially all guests to this event in the coming days, months and even years, depending of course on how bored and desperate they are to make arrests and maintain appearances.
When we were growing up, we were always told no. No, you sit across the street from school waiting for friends (cops would chase you away). No you can’t get a car. No you can’t grow your hair out, or wear those pants. No you can’t have this, drink that, or smoke the green stuff. No, no no. We spend our entire teenage years being told No. We spend those years waiting endlessly to be ‘grown up’ and allowed to make our own decisions.
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Over the last few years a group of NIMBYS in central Queens have been basically advocating for the eradication of rail freight through Queens. The people behind this campaign seem to live close to Fresh Pond Yard (which has been a rail yard since at least 1906). After years of freight rail decline and the lost of the large ‘Yard A’ classification yard in L.I.C. (which will become a passenger rail yard in support of the ESA project) the LIRR outsourced its freight operations to a small startup railroad (New York & Atlantic) which has aggressively and successfully marketed its services. The growth of their business has made Fresh Pond yard busier than it has been in the last 20 years.
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Ever have one of those days where you just want to curse at everyone in sight? Well, it seems Elmo here has been having a lot of days like that.
After one recent freak out, Elmo went to Jail. Ta ta you crazy red fuck. Hope to see you again soon!
Being an EDP is rough in this town.
Whenever I hear about something like this, you know what message it sends across?
A) You’re on some state list of bad people
B) Our tax dollars are being thrown away on monitoring people like me, who are doing absolutely nothing worth monitoring. OMG he went in some abandoned building no one cares about and took photos! Now factor that by around 20 for all the active known explorers in NYC, and perhaps 200-500 for all those who stay off the radar. That’s a lot of people to monitor, follow around, and sift through the trash cans of.
C) Hey guys what’s up? Tell our mutual friends I say hello. BTW, can you do something about all the fucking homeless people riding during morning rush hour – you know, so us tax-paying (i.e. paying-your-paycheck) people can get to fucking work without smelling fungus coated humans? Thanks.
And no i can’t drive to work because the rent for parking in Manhattan is too damn high!
Oh well. Maybe they think we’re Muslims or something… not that that should matter.