Reasons 987 To Hate the MTA

Excuse my language, but someone explain to me how the FUCK the MTA gets to stick taxes into my cellphone bill. And not just one, mind you, but three separate ones. An MTA sales tax, an MTA excise tax and an MTA surcharge. I’m sorry. A surcharge? For what? This sniveling group of math illiterates does nothing to enhance my cellphone service on a monthly basis. I could possibly–POSSIBLY–see a small fee if there was actual cell service in subway stations and on the trains. But that’s not the case (and, to be honest, I don’t want to hear the morons on the train making plans with their idiot friends or fighting with their stupid spouses over whose turn it is to pick up the damn milk on the way home from work).

Of course, New York City being what it is, there are a total of 10 taxes on your cellphone bill. Plus the Federal tax.

I love this quote from the story: “If there was a $5 monkey fee, even if they couldn’t explain it, you would still have to pay,” sniped Danny Schluck, 28, of Bushwick.

Hey, you know what Danny Schluck of Bushwick? A monkey fee is something I could get behind. At least monkeys are funny and bring joy to the lives of many. Besides, considering the MTAs rational budgeting plans, perhaps a monkey fee would be a more honest way of describing their taxes.

In the Bowels of Brooklyn

The lair of the CHUD
The lair of the CHUD
Braving giant rats, albino alligators and hungry CHUDs, I headed into underground Brooklyn today with a group of friends. Three years now, every other Sunday, I’ve watched people climbing a rickety ladder down into a manhole in the middle of the Court Street/Atlantic Avenue intersection for tours of the Atlantic Avenue Tunnel.
Continue reading “In the Bowels of Brooklyn”

10 Things I Wish You’d Stop Doing on the Subway

1. Clipping your fingernails (especially if your cuticles are bleeding).
2. Laughing hysterically with your friends. The joke wasn’t funny, your laugh is annoying and the girls across the aisle aren’t paying attention to you.
3. Sighing because I won’t give up my seat. You’re not pregnant, crippled, old or hot. It ain’t gonna happen. Hell, I’m married, so even if you are hot, you can remain standing. And sighing.
4. Performing magic tricks involving live birds.
5. Asking for change on behalf of the United Homeless Organization. (And those nasty-ass ‘sangwiches’ don’t help your case when you’re shouting in my ear.)
6. Reading over my shoulder. Get your own damn book.
7. Clipping your toenails.
8. Peeling that orange and dropping the peels on the floor.
9. Singing along with the Mariah Carey song playing on your iPod. You may be wearing heels, but your adam’s apple is giving you away.
10. Shitting yourself — and the seat.

UPDATE: On the ride home, woman sitting next to me is shelling peanuts! To be fair, she was putting the shells in the bag, not on the floor. … Also, ad your own in comments!

Check Out The Subway Chronicles

I’m adding my good friend Jackie Cangro’s blog to ye olde blogroll. I’m probably not going to make it a habit to announce additions, but since Jackie was the first person to publish me in book form, I owe her. Big Time. While you’re at it, order a copy of the book she edited, also called The Subway Chronicles. I’m in it, so you know it’s good! (It’s also very cheap.) Also featured in the book are Calvin Trillin, Jonathan Lethem and some other people.

Great way to start the day

Walking to the subway this morning, I noticed armies of kids on the march. Oh no. Field-trip day of some sort. Thankfully, none of the chitlins were climbing aboard my train. Indeed, I found a seat on the 4. But at some point my luck ran out … and ran out big. No gaggle of 6-year-old cuties for me. Rather, a horde of 12-year-old boys who’d never heard of that little thing we call “Inside voices.” The teacher tried a couple of times, but his heart didn’t seem in it. Hell, the only bit of conversation I caught was him telling the kids “Crack didn’t exist back then.” To which one of the kids said, “I only seen cocaine once” … at which point another in the group, a budding Oscar Wao meets Ignatius Reilly type started complaining that he was too warm (while wearing a down vest, cap and black mittens while dancing in place).