We’d lamented the demise of the Westchester section of the NY Times, as it was always a good source of local news, much of it transit-related, because all we truly care about in the ‘burbs is a smooth ride to the city each day.
Well, the replacement for the Sunday Westchester section (not to mention the Jersey, the Long Island, the City, etc.) is the all-encompassing Metropolitan section. And the most recent one actually has two interesting stories about local transit–three, if you include the surprisingly moving Lonelyhearts subway poetry culled from Craigs List.
One story looks at the weird conundrum of train stations with long waiting lists for spots, juxtaposed with the fact that lots of people are laid off and no longer need their parking spots, at least for the time being. So there are long lists of people who cannot park at the station in their town, while spots are unoccupied because a permit holder is sitting at home, sending out resumes for jobs that will eventually get him or her back into the city.
Our fearless forefather Robert Meehan is quoted in the story.
Roughly 100 of the 573 spaces at the parking lot in Dobbs Ferry were free at 3 p.m. on a recent Tuesday. Over in Hartsdale, Stephanie Kavourias, executive director of the public parking authority, figures that about 90 of the station’s 900 permit spaces are empty on an average day now. And Robert Meehan, the supervisor of the town of Mount Pleasant, which includes Valhalla (191 spaces) and Hawthorne (355), has also seen growth in vacancies.
“I went down to Valhalla on a recent Monday and there were 30 spaces empty,” Mr. Meehan said. “Before the recession it would always be full.”
Some are pushing to allow permit holders to rent their permits (and spots) until they need them once again.
Elsewhere in the section, Timesman Ray Rivera offers an offbeat solution to the modern annoyance known round these parts as Fremix–the unwanted overspill of noise emanating from a fellow train riders’ iPod.
I sat down in the first car, empty but for about half a dozen people, including, of course, two teenagers blasting iPods. Each was playing different music, and the overflow collided in a discordant shrill that flooded every cubic inch of the car like a swarm of angry mosquitoes.
I sat two seats away and pulled out my crossword puzzle for the half-hour ride to Inwood. But those mosquitoes. … I gave the boys a stern look to telegraph my annoyance. They ignored me. Finally, I said, “Excuse me,” tapped my index finger to my earlobe, pointed to their headphones, and pantomimed, “Can you turn it down, please?”
“Go sit somewhere else,” one of the boys said.
“You can hear it through the whole car,” I said. Nothing.
Then Rivera gets clever.
Finally, a bit of subterranean poesy–with a System of a Down reference to boot–to brighten your otherwise unspectacular Tuesday.
metal train guy
i dont use this craigslist thing.
i was sitting right next to you.
long awesome Shavo style beard (soad).
you had headphones on.
chain around your neck.
backpack. big guy.
i had some tattoos.
my arm was touching your leg.
you got off at 42nd street and yes!
you looked back at me for a millisecond …
and i saw a very sad face.
im sad too.