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OMG…WTF…and any other acronym that fits

I’m miserable. This week is a perfect example of why I consistently bitch about summer. I’d take a blizzard over this any day.

You know it’s bad when your cell phone rings, you pick it up, and it’s an automatically-generated recording from NStar advising me to conserve energy.

You know it’s bad when you get in to work and there are emails from facilities asking you to conserve energy.

You know it’s bad when the commuter rail is having to reduce it’s speeds because the tracks are rippling/expanding from the heat (leaving passengers with an extra 20 minutes on potentially 100+ degree platforms.

You know it’s bad when a pregnant woman dies at a Red Sox game while sitting in the sun-drenched bleachers.

My commute home last night was dreadful. Why is it that there always seems to be the biggest complications on bad-weather days? I got to Harvard station last night and waited with hundreds and hundreds (or more?) of passengers on the platform for a train that never came for 20 minutes. We were all sweating to death. Finally a train arrived. It was the longest train I’d ever seen: it must have been the length of three train station platforms. It appeared that two (TWO!!!) entire trains (not just the cars..but the entire link of trains) became disabled so a third group was pulling all of them.

Of course, that train went by and wasn’t taking any passengers.

Then I switched at Park (from red to green) and five (FIVE!) Government Center trains came by before one that went the two extra stops to my stop (North Station). This has always been a pet peeve of mine. North Station is the 2nd or 3rd most major transit hub in New England yet the MBTA doesn’t have all green lines go there. WHY?

Anyway, a train finally arrived after I waited on the humid 95-degree platform (with no fans to circulate air…well, they have fans – they just weren’t on!). But the train had a wheelchair bound person on it. And, since the line is not effectively ADA compliant, there was a 5+ minute delay while the train drivers got out, brought over the portable lift, raised it, brought out the ramp, lowered the platform, removed the passenger, put the lift back together again, and rolled it away.

I wanted to die.

And the poor man in the wheelchair: all of the heat-miserable passengers get upset with him as if it’s his fault – and then he’s stuck getting stared at while subway employees have to help him off the train. There has to be a better, less humiliating, solution to accomodating mobility-challenged passengers. At the very least, don’t the drivers have communication systems? Couldn’t they have called ahead and had people prepare the lift in advance to speed things up?

Or better yet, if the entire region is incapable of handling such heat (warranting recorded messages from utility companies and employers asking us to conserve energy at work) shouldn’t we just close all offices and send people home? Think about how much energy would be saved by turning off all of that electricity. Hell, we do it for 6 inches of snow. This is much worse.



  1. Comment by karyn on August 2, 2006 12:51 pm

    I agree with you completely – nature carries on despite societal demands and expectations… a reminder that we are intrinsically nature driven creatures who impose their own restrictions on themselves. Makes you wonder how we got to the top of the food chain, dunnit? I didn’t hear about the pregnant woman dying @ Fenway – how horrible. Yeah – that’s about the biggest tipoff that it’s too freaking hot. Go home, shut down the offices, conserve commercial electricity and sit in the tub. Fuck it.

  2. Comment by OTC on August 2, 2006 1:05 pm

    What kind of moron brings a woman that’s 7-months pregnant to a baseball game in 90+ degree heat? It’s tragic, but it was totally preventable.

  3. Comment by J.P. on August 2, 2006 2:14 pm

    I agree with you – they should close down office buildings in an attempt to save some energy. They close schools around here when there’s no heat, why don’t they do the same when the air conditioning isn’t working properly? I’m not being a baby about it, but perhaps if “the man” took an extra day or four off during the summer we wouldn’t have the energy concerns we have today.

  4. Comment by Jessie on August 2, 2006 3:47 pm

    Poor Karl!
    You must have been beside yourself after that commute. I officially give you permission to stay home for the duration of this terrible ordeal. File attending a Red Sox Game under “What NOT to do this summer…”

  5. Comment by chrispy on August 2, 2006 10:32 pm

    we have air conditioned subway stations, but then again all our summers are much like this one (though your heat index was something retarded like 115 degrees). hey it could be worse. you could lose power tonight.

    o o

  6. Comment by snarl on August 3, 2006 9:28 am

    Um, Jessie? File “attend a Red Sox Game” under what NOT to do the rest of my life!

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