Tag Archive: MetroNorth


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Are You Licensed to Ride the Bus?

I got this link in a comment to my “Riding the Bus” post, not only do I agree with these guidelines I could probably add a few or a hundred to them.

A Collection of Musings

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In order to drive a car, you have to take lessons and pass a test. I strongly believe that transit users should also be subject to rigorous testing, because they too can be a hazard to the public. In order to enforce the system, there should be inspectors who you show your ‘Certified to Ride Public Transportation’ card to. If you get 10 de-merit points in 1 month, you will need to undergo an intensive course entitled ‘How to Behave in Public’.

I understand that this is unlikely to happen unless city leaders start using transit and see for themselves that most villages have in fact put their local idiot on a bus to the city.

In the meanwhile, based on real experiences, I’ve drafted a list of guidelines I would like to print out and hand to people who ride the bus or metro with me.

  1. If you drop…

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This was an acoustic show. Meaning no band, just him and two friends with guitars. The proceeds from this concert benefited his charity “Sidewalk Angels“. Mari even came on stage to tell a little about it and thank everyone for, in effect, donating. This is also not the first time I have seen Rob Thomas, and the reason this is not on the review blog is because I am not reviewing his show.

Instead I am writing about the experience. I went up to Em’s on Friday and we drove out to the concert. I had a migraine starting Wednesday and was still feeling it Friday even after I stayed home Thursday (I had originally planned to go to work on Thursday). Despite this I made it to the train I wanted to catch, I was even early and very proud of myself. The only thing was, since I was getting on at 125th, and I never know which direction is which, I mean I had an idea but I wasn’t sure, so I got on the front of the train instead of the back and so got off in Beacon on the wrong end of the train. Not really a problem, just confused Tigger who was waiting for me and didn’t see me come out with the rest of the people.

Fast forward to the concert, which we got lost driving to (a couple of times), and as we were sitting there Em told me that a co-worker made her feel old by saying Billy Joel is washed up, or a has been or something like that. After I scoffed at that I was looking around the arena and saw a banner hanging up, “Billy Joel” with a big 10 under his name, and under that “sold out shows in a row. A New England record. Or it was at the time. I pointed it out to Em, she read the dates “from May to July 2008”, well that was 3 years ago she remarked with a smirk. He broke a record set in 1987. Washed up my a__.

In the Spring of 2008, Billy Joel performed 10 sold-out shows at Mohegan Sun, and set several attendance records.

On the entertainment side, the biggest thing in the casino business, for this property and for me, was Billy Joel. It was the biggest deal I have ever been involved in. Dennis Arfa (Joel’s booking agent since 1976) and I go back years. I would always approach Dennis–from when I was in Atlantic City until I came up to New England—and ask, “How can I get Billy Joel to do a casino?” It never happened. One day, Dennis and I were having a friendly lunch and, of course, I brought the subject up again. The idea of breaking a (casino) record intrigued Billy and it intrigued us as well. We did 10 sold-out shows in a row. He sold out every show instantly. That, to me, is one of the great casino entertainment stories.

The concert was nice, Rob making his little comments, forgetting the words to a song (not his own, “Save the Last Dance”) and getting them from someone’s iPhone, then tossing it back to them (OOPS).

Then we drove home, only getting turned around once this time. The next morning I went home and that was an adventure.

First was getting to the train station, first thing was, since it was New Year’s Eve day, I wanted to get home as soon as possible, before everyone and his brother started going down to the city. I was up to late for Tigger, D wanted to get the car looked at, Em convinced him to wait for me to eat breakfast. I caught the 10:57 out of Beacon.

When I got to 125th Street I had to pee but the bathroom door was locked. Since I was going home I decided to just wait till I got there and hiked down to the #6 train. I swiped my card, and went nowhere. A 30 day MetroCard is just that, 30 days not a month. So I had to go get a new MetroCard, then I went down, I was determined to not get on the express like the last time but I hesitated on the first platform, “Uptown and the Bronx”. If I was at GCT that is the train I would take, but I was in Harlem, I ran down to the next platform as the doors were closing on the train. So I had to wait and I had to pee, not a good combination. I hate running in my apartment when I have to pee, that’s usually when I forget to lock my door and then I’m in the bathroom wondering if I locked the door or not.

The issue with the MetroCard meant I didn’t go shopping. That turned out to be good because by waiting until today the dress I wanted was 50% off.

After the hurricane passed through New York, I read headlines like this: ‘Some Hurricane,’ New Yorkers Grumble as Danger Passes with quotes like this:

“With all the preparations and all the hoopla on TV, it was all for naught,” he said. “I feel embarrassed that we made such a to-do.”

“The cops were riding around telling people to get out, and we were making fun of what a big deal” the storm had not been, Mr. Fenton said.

No big deal? Maybe he would like to tell that to the million people in New Jersey and New York (each) and the Hundreds of thousands more residents in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island without power, to the people whose houses and businesses floated away, to the million people who rely on the trains to get into the city to work. He could also tell that to the two people whose kayak overturned and the rescue workers that saved their lives, or the hundreds of work crews that labored through the night on the train tracks looking for fallen trees and mud slides and arranging for clean up and repairs.

As for the comment that the mayor over reacted by shutting down mass transit, could you imagine the response if water had gotten into the tunnels and shorted out the system? Not only would you have damage to the system, you would also have hundred if not thousands of people trapped in subway cars in tunnels. Would that have been better?

Yes New York City did not get hit as hard as forecast, but if anyone thinks this storm is no big deal, they should go tell that to the families of the 40 people that died.

Just for fun

Ever do something just for fun? MetroNorth has a text number for getting the next train. Last time I used it I noticed ‘reply MLB’ so I did, just to see what would happen. I got the following.

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Then I noticed there were letters next to the games listed. So I replied with a ‘C’. Hey I have unlimited texting.

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I don’t know what those numbers and letters mean. Then I replied ‘b’ for NYY.

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Then ‘s’ for standings.

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Just for fun.

Wearing of the GREEN

Is not part of the plan today. It never is, since I don’t observe holidays. And the more I don’t, the more I don’t like them.

Take today, St. Paddy’s Day or St. Patrick’s Day whatever you like to call it. What exactly is its purpose? Em says Irish Catholics make a huge deal of it. They go to church, they get together with the family, have dinner etc. Yet for the rest of people it is just an excuse to wear green, go to a parade, get totally wasted and bug me on the train. Well I suppose not all of them want to bug me on the train, but the girl who patted my breast? Yeah, that bugged me.

But seriously, does anyone really remember who St. Patrick was and what he did for the Irish people? Or what the legend says he did? I seem to recall a story about snakes. Is anyone else bothered by the fact that this supposedly historic and important act has been turned into a joke? An excuse to get drunk and be rowdy? Exactly how many of these people, wearing green, dying their mustaches and hair green or red, drinking beer, how many of them are really Irish? I’m not Irish, I’m Spanish and English, two nationalities not exactly known for good relations with the Irish. Another reason for me not to wear green, it would be hypocritical.

Not that I have anything against the Irish, this rant is not against them. Just against March 17.

That is all, she says.

Three days

Three days and no posts from me. I am blaming it on the flu or a stomach bug, or whatever it is that is floating around the house making us sick. I tried hiding in the basement, the darn germs found me. When I got home from the city Monday, I was so sick I slept right through the stop. That has never happened before. NEVER. Then I started throwing up. So when Stitch asked, “So am I driving to New Hamburg?” The answer was no. I needed to go to Poughkeepsie cause I needed a bathroom so I could get cleaned up somewhat.

When I told Stitch what time, he said that is about how long it would take him to get there, so I just waited for the train and came home on it. The people working at the Poughkeepsie train station are icky. Not very nice at all.

Blogging was the last thing on my mind when I got home. I thought about it yesterday, but couldn’t come up with anything to say and so just didn’t write anything. So now I am behind. I am going to try posting two today, and two tomorrow.

I hope the post-a-day people don’t ban me from the clubhouse.