Halloween Commute

I enjoy seeing people riding the T in costume. This year wasn't spectacular, but there was enough to comment on.

There were mouse ears on a woman on the bus.

There was a bunny costume including painted on whiskers on an Orange Line woman.

I saw a guy in a Yankees uniform in Back Bay station. He must have lost a bet.

Lastly, the guy who sells Spare Change news on Clarendon St. was wearing an Elvis mask...very surreal.

Happy Halloween.


Best in Baseball

Three long years. I didn't think the curse of Mark Bellhorn would ever be reversed.

The bus came on time today so I had to jog a bit to make sure I caught it. I got a "fist punch" from Mike. He has been my Sox talk partner all year. He never gave up even when the Sox were on the brink of elimination in the Cleveland series.

P.S. I am not a smug 21st century Sox fan. I will appreciate this championship as much as I can. I already told a Yankee fan that works with me that she should start rooting for a winning team. She's from New York...but when in Boston...do as the Bostonians do.


Singing Conductors Bus Detour Pennant Waving

A few notes from the world of commuting to work.

Yesterday there was a woman conductor on the Orange Line who was "singing" out the stop names. Well, she wasn't totally in full-on song mode, but each stop name and connection information she broadcasted over the intercom had a tuneful lilt to it. She could be the next MBTA idol.

I like that you can now put the word "idol" on the end of any organization, and somehow it means you could be the winner of that organization's singing competition.

Today the road that leads to Malden station was being paved, so the bus had to take a scenic tour around, up, and through Malden Square to get to the T station.

The woman who was sitting next to me was reading a book. When she noticed we were not stopping at the station, she looked around and exclaimed, "What the hell happened?"

I told her we were detoured and she shook her head. You could see panic in her face and she was reaching for the stop signal...muttering something like, "Well I'll just get off here."

I could see in her face that she started to slowly understand that we were going to end up at the station eventually.

She reassured me that we were indeed heading towards the T station, which I never doubted but was pleased that she wanted to comfort me.

She then started to sing a little song to herself. More singing on the T...sweet.

When I got to Back Bay, I noticed the red flags and a big 2007 American League pennant waving from the top of the old Hancock Tower. Check it out if you can.


Maybe People Were Tired?

Back in 2004 when the Red Sox won the ALCS, people commuting to work were jubliant. We were letting people cut in front of us. We weren't driving like maniacs down the road. We were waving to each other on the roads.

On the T this morning, it was business as usual. Nobody looked really happy. There was no feeling of joy in the subway car or on the bus.

2004 was certainly different. We beat the Yankees after not beating the Yankees for so long.

This year, it seemed like we should win...unfortunately, I think we underestimated how good the Cleveland Indians were.

I don't know. I was beat this morning. I think everyone else was happy, but just not showing it because they were sleepy from staying up until midnight to see the end of the game.


Hot Bus

I was on "Faint Watch" this morning. The bus had the heat cranking this morning. I didn't think it was that cold. It seemed kinda steamy out there, and the fog sorta reinforced the feeling.

Nobody opened a window. The bus was not filled to capacity, so that may have help us to get through the ride without anyone passing out.

In February, when we really need that level of heat, we won't have it. Save it, my fine bus driver. Conserve the heat until the dead of winter.

Don't waste it on a mild October day.



It's hard to retire a blog. I just logged into my blogger account for the first time since earlier this week and I found two comments that people had left that were very complimentary. It warms my li'l heart.

I saw so many Red Sox caps on people's heads today...and on people I wouldn't expect like Graphic Novel Reading Guy and Business Man #4. These are just nicknames I have given some of the regulars who share my commute.

In Boston, we don't have much that unifies us...but we have the Sox. For me, that's just fine.

From reading my comments, maybe another unifying force is a collective annoyance for the MBTA. Meh, I'd rather root for the Sox.


Wake Up!

Fun Columbus Day ride on the Orange Line today.

I was sitting next to a woman who was pushing against my right side. I wasn't too sure why this was happening. I wasn't wearing any Axe bodyspray.

Soon, she stood up between the Community College and North Station stops. I was thinking she was getting ready to depart but she surprised me and sat down in an empty seat across from me. I wasn't too sure why this was happening. I did shower this morning.

Two stops later I understood why this woman was acting the way she was. There was a guy who was falling asleep...literally. When the train pulled into State, the guy toppled like a Redwood in an Oregon forest. His head barely missed my shoulder. The fall woke him up for a second, in which he held out his hand to motion an apology.

The next few stops were an adventure because he continued to wobble with each movement of the train. Finally, he moved over to the corner seat and was able to lead against the wall.

Dude, wake up.


Orange Line Disruption

Good story.

I got to the bus just in time to catch my bus. It came on time for once and I thought it was a sign that the commute was gonna be sweeeeet.

Not so fast there, kiddo.

I walk into Malden Center and there is a woman talking into a C.B. radio-looking microphone (I'm totally dating myself, but I don't care. Hey, it's true. I remember the 70s!). I couldn't hear what she was saying because she was broadcasting through speakers that were situated on the platform above.

I walked up the stairs, took my normal stance on the platform, and awaited her message.

"We are shuttling passengers from Haymarket to Back Bay Station," she kept repeating as if it was some sort of transportation mantra.

Many people looked bewildered. Others appeared angry. I shrugged my shoulders and came up with the solution that I would be able to pick up the Green Line at North Station and not concern myself with this shutttle bus nonsense.

The Orange Line came shortly after her announcement. The ride was delayed many times; at stations and between stations. The conductor on the train reiterated the shuttle bus plan and made it clear that Haymarket was going to be the last stop. He also told us the reason for this disruption of service.

"There is a damaged work vehicle stuck between Haymarket and Back Bay."

One person offered a simple solution in response: "Well, move it," he said.

Maybe it was just that simple. Maybe the T didn't think of that.....

When we finally got to North Station, many people had the same idea as me. Chance would have it that an empty "E" line train was waiting for us as the doors opened. Suddenly, it was if the starting gun of the marathon has been fired. People started to run...I mean sprint...for the train. I decided to wait. Heck, I had waited this long, why try to hurry it up now?

A "C" line came right after it. It was slow as ever...but I finally got to Copley.

I couldn't pass up this report.