Step All The Way Into The Train

Ever wonder what the conductor means when they ask people to "step all the way into the train?"

It's not like people are straddling the door with one foot in the train and one foot out of it.

What they mean is once you board the train, you should move to the middle of the car you are in...if you can.

People who enter the car first should remember this instruction. If you enter the train first and there are a lot of people behind you...move into the car as far as possible.

It's a different tactic than stepping all the way into the train...but harder to convey in an announcement.


May You Be Well

Bus Departure Time: 6:58
Bus Arrival Time: 7:13
T Departure Time: 7:17
T Arrival Time: 7:38
Weather as I call it: Sunny and 50s.
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 1
Feared for my life: Nope.


No school kids on the bus this morning which made for an easy ride again.

The Orange Line had no delays...so all and all it was a problem-free commute.

Taking a look at the date, it appears I have been running this blog for 2 years.

It's been fun. I have certainly learned a lot, but I think I've learned everything I can from this project,

I have come to the decision to semi-retire this blog. I've become less passionate about the subject matter (if passionate is even the right word for it), and looking at my watch for every connection has been getting a little tiresome too.

Not to say I won't post ever again, I just don't think I will post every workday like I have been for the past 450+ work days. I will be on vacation next week, so definitely no posting then. When I get back, we'll see.

Thank you all for reading. May you be well.


Without Kids

Bus Departure Time: 6:58
Bus Arrival Time: 7:10
T Departure Time: 7:12
T Arrival Time: 7:37
Weather as I call it: Sunny and nice. 50s
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 2
Feared for my life: No


The Malden Public Schools had the day off for Rosh Hashanah today. I found out that this is the reason why schools were in session before Labor Day. They had school in late August to make up for the day they would have off in September.

The bus came on time and was almost empty. Let's cherish this day.

The Orange Line had some delays and I was sitting in seat that faced east...directly in front of a window. The sun is still pretty powerful, so I sat there blind for a few minutes while we waited to move. (I would have given this trip a "1" on the annoyance scale if it hadn't been for this sun drenched delay).

Meh, it helped me to wake up.


Water Bottle Situation

Bus Departure Time: 7:05
Bus Arrival Time: 7:20
T Departure Time: 7:21
T Arrival Time: 7:42
Weather as I call it: Sunny and pleasant.
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 2
Feared for my life: Not today.


I had a pretty good commute this morning. The sun was out. I got a seat on the bus. It wasn't too crowded. Life is good.

Close to the end of the bus trip, there was a peculiar situation where an older woman put an unopened, half liter Poland Spring bottle on the seat next to me. I wasn't paying attention; I was looking out the window watching the world go by (remember, life is good?). Then there was a thumping sound made on the empty seat next to me. I turned to look and the nice lady who was sitting across the aisle from me held up her hand and smiled at me a bit. I looked down at the seat and saw the water bottle. I half smiled and turned back to the window.

I am not sure if she thought it was mine; I don't remember bringing a water bottle onto the bus. I think it was left behind and it was rolling on the floor. She must have picked it up and put it on the seat to stop it from knocking into her every time the bus took a turn.

When we got to Malden Center, I picked it up off the seat and threw it out. I mean, I wasn't going to drink it. Even though it appeared to be unopened, I wasn't 100% sure. Plus, it had dirt all over it...and even though that dirt hadn't appeared to contaminate the bottle's contents, I wasn't 100% sure.

I was thinking that eventually someone would have to throw it away, probably an MBTA staff member, so I did it before the bottle caused any more problems. I did what I thought was right.


Drippy and the Mumbler

Bus Departure Time: 7:02
Bus Arrival Time: 7:17
T Departure Time: 7:22
T Arrival Time: 7:46
Weather as I call it: Cloudy and misty. High 50s
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 3
Feared for my life: Nah


Just to let you know....The puke smell in the Malden Center T station stairwell was nonexistent this morning. It seemed clean from what I could tell.

The Orange Line was an adventure. I got stuck between two characters: Drippy and The Mumbler.

Drippy sat on my right. He had a large container of what appeared to be water tucked inside of a mesh pocket on his backpack. The lid must not have been securely fastened since it was dripping all over the place before he sat down.

The Mumbler sat on my left. He was a large man who wore shorts and Ace Bandages on his lower legs and mumbled odd phrases throughout the trip.

Drippy wanted to read his Herald using both hands and Mumbles was sitting wide-legged...so I had a pretty uncomfortable ride. I think one of my legs fell asleep.


Malden's Funky Odor

Bus Departure Time: 7:05
Bus Arrival Time: 7:23
T Departure Time: 7:26
T Arrival Time: 7:47
Weather as I call it: Cloudy and cooler. Have we had summer's last gasp?
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 3
Feared for my life: No


Yay Monday! Awesome!

I sat next to a woman who would sigh every time the bus stopped. I thought to myself, "Uuuuh, this is what the bus does...it stops....why are you so annoyed about that?"

I am thrilled to report that the stairwell of Malden Center's subway station smelled like vomit this morning. That was a nice wake up call. I was unable to make a visual, although that doesn't rule out it's existence.

The Orange Line was fairly uneventful. The announcer lost count of what stop was next and corrected herself with a laugh. I don't think anyone noticed.

She reminded people to take their newspapers with them as they left the train, which is nice.


T Riders Come Lately

Bus Departure Time: 7:06
Bus Arrival Time: 7:26
T Departure Time: 7:27
T Arrival Time: 7:47
Weather as I call it: Partly sunny
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 3
Feared for my life: No


When I started "using" the MBTA again to get to work back in February, the number of people sharing my commute was tolerable. This week, it's been a little much.

Maybe it's like this every September. Maybe it's like the gym in January. All the New Year's resolution peeps crowd the place but by mid-February most of them drop off and then it's back to "normal levels".

I hope that's what happens with the T too. Kids will say to themselves, "I don't have to leave so early." or "I can't take the crowds, I'm leaving later."

These things have a way of working themselves out. I am sure of it.

Happy Friday.


Pointing Out The Obvious

Bus Departure Time: 7:02
Bus Arrival Time: 7:18
T Departure Time: 7:22
T Arrival Time: 7:43
Weather as I call it: Partly sunny and 50s
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): I have to give it a 4
Feared for my life: No


It was one of those days, one of those commutes, that you just know isn't going to be good. It starts when you get to the bus stop and there are 7 or so people standing around that you have never seen before but they all want to get on the bus with you.

Where did you people come from? Why are you paying with change?

It also seemed like we stopped at every stop. It didn't feel like we got anywhere quick.

I think the heat was on in the bus and coupled with all the bodies radiating their own heat, it made for a sweaty ride for some people. Not fun. I'm grouchy. Wah.

The Malden T station had a larger crowd than normal waiting for the Orange Line. Are they all college students? Where have these peeps been?

The comment of the morning was spoken at Downtown Crossing by the T announcer. To try to ease the delay of passengers entering the train, he explained that, "the train has more than one door...please use all available doors."

The comment was just on the verge of being obnoxious, but thoroughly steeped in the realm of the obvious.

Funny thing is, it didn't shorten our time at the station. We still sat there for a good 30 seconds after he said it.


Movies Filming in Boston

Bus Departure Time: 7:00
Bus Arrival Time: 7:15
T Departure Time: 7:20
T Arrival Time: 7:41
Weather as I call it: Sunny but cooler. 50s
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 2
Feared for my life: No


The fall bus schedule has made me feel a little less stressed in the morning. I am happy not to be shoved or squashed or pushed. It has been pretty low key.

The one thing that would make it better would be for everyone to get Charlie Cards. Paying with bills and coins is so 20th century.

There is a movie being filmed near my work, in the Fairmont Copley Plaza. My guess is it's The Women shoot...and not the Bachelor No. 2 shoot.

It's just a guess though.

UPDATE: I guessed wrong! Boston.com sez it IS Bachelor No. 2.


Soy Amada

Bus Departure Time: 7:02
Bus Arrival Time: 7:15
T Departure Time: 7:18
T Arrival Time: 7:39
Weather as I call it: Sunny and 60s
Level of commute annoyance (scale of 1 to 10): 2
Feared for my life: No


It appeared that we were not going to be saved this week. It appeared that we were still on the summer schedule and we were going to be dealing with the same "too many people, too little space" we encountered last week.

As the bus turned the corner in the distance, my spirits sank. It was late and it looked to be alone.

Then suddenly, the lights of another bus turned the corner right behind it. All was not lost. We are back on the fall schedule!

I got on the bus and took a seat. The driver was new and was determined to get us to the T station as fast as possible.

There was a woman on the bus that had a button that read, "Soy Amada"...I guess we all felt loved today. (It means: "I am loved.")