Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Expensive Litter-ature

Today the T is handing out full color leaflets telling the travelling public to be aware of potential terrorist action.
They're nice leaflets, 3 panel, nice design, and of course, totally useless.
"If you see something, say something." "Accidentally left behind, or an accident waiting to happen?"
I was handed one by a smiling (!) T employee on my way into the station, and by the time I got to the train, there were loads of discarded copies on the ground, in the bin - where I put mine - and on the train seats.
All these handouts will accomplish is a (most likely) union affiliated print shop making a tidy profit, and the cleaning guy getting some overtime.
The Metro noted that 30,000 would be handed out on the commuter rail. I'm guessing that means that about 100,000 were produced for this event, as they can only have enough staff to hand them out at "key" stations in the T system.
Instead of placing trash around the system, why not have more POLICE on the trains and in the stations?

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

A Quick Response

I'm stunned. I had sent a quick letter to the Orange line chief - who probably doesn't really know the dilli-o - cc'd the GM, of course, and got a response from engineering.

From the T:

Thank you for your interest and for taking the time to write to us
regarding the new LED signs.

The new signs are part of an on-going project which is updating our PA
and LED announcement capabilities at key stations. The signs you
mention will provide service-related information, such as approaching
train information, next train designation and service announcements.
The information will begin transmitting in early April.

Thank you again for your inquiry and for your continued support of
public transportation.


Caroline Dunne
Infrastructure & Engineering
500 Arborway, Second Floor
Jamaica Plain, MA. 02130
617 222 1820 - Tel
617 222 3918 - Fax

Friday, March 10, 2006


I noticed the new orange LED signs at DTX today.
Other than the size and color, are they any different than the old red signs?
That is, are they actually going to tell us anything other than not to smoke?
How much more money can the T waste on stuff like this?
Whose brother works for the sign company?
In case you're not in the know, the T has had LED signs for years in many stations. I can imagine that they cost a good amount, even if the T goes with the lowest bidder.
The thing is that these signs have done NOTHING. EVER.
All they've told is not to smoke and to visit mbta.com.
They are almost as bad as the "announcements" the T makes telling us to hold on to the handrail on escalators.

Orange Scorn

Mr. Mac feels slighted, and perhaps a bit scared....

I was leaning on the conductor’s booth door this morning when it opened up. The conductor, a middle-aged woman, apologized, as did I for leaning against the door. Then she went to the middle of the train to check something out, and when she came back to the booth she said to me “You shouldn’t lean against that door because I might have to open it again. In fact, I might open it up on purpose if you’re leaning against it”. How about that?

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

You Knew I'd Be Pissed About This

Right then, another fare hike.
Another year of no improvements.
Another lame excuse.
And yet another reason to HATE UNIONS.
Really, does an organization as small as the MBTA need 30 unions?
I'm not familiar with the details, but why?
So say you've got your unions for the people who repair the trains and drive the trains, and maybe another for the conductors.
Who else is part of a union?
The cleaners?
I'm pretty sure they're 3rd party contracts, not T employees.
The management?
Nope, they are definitely not unionized.
Who else then?
In reality, you don't need any unions, as this country has LABOR LAWS.
The only people benefitting from the union are the union bosses.
The T has raised fares about 54% since I started taking it daily into Boston, say in the last 6 years or so.
I want to rage quite a bit longer on the fare hike, but I've got so much to say that I can't type as fast as my mind is grinding away.