Dear Metro: Fare is Fair

Dear Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority,

Sometime between now and January 28 you are going to decide whether or not to raise fares 10 cents to avoid the need for service cuts that would make my miserable commute even more miserable. The choice, and my preferred solution, reminds me of a joke that Jews like to tell: (it may be that non-Jews like to tell this joke as well, but I think it is funnier when told with a yiddish accent and if a non-Jew were to tell it with that sort of accent it would be offensive, you fucking anti-Semite):

Two Jews (natch) are eating lunch at a restaurant.
1st Jew: I hate this place.
2nd Jew: Me too. The service is horrible.
1st Jew: And the food is overpriced…
2nd Jew: And everything I order has too much salt…
1st Jew: And the meat must have been picked-up off the side of the road…
2nd Jew: And I always leave here sick…
1st Jew: And such small portions!

Metro you suck. But please don’t cut the portions. You win. I’ll pay. What do you want 10 cents? Sure. Twenty cents? Why not. Take everything in the wallet, just leave my driver’s license and the kids’ school pictures. I’m not alone in this. We, your downtrodden, defeated and dependent ridership are practically begging you to raise our fares just so we don’t have endure service cuts that would extend our uncomfortable commutes and make them more uncomfortable. When in the history of the world have 77% of any people asked you to charge them more for the pleasure of continued unpleasant experiences?

But here are my demands for a few changes that I want in exchange for the fare hike that shouldn’t cost too much money:

  1. Stop killing people. Seriously. Riders have been dying. Pedestrians have been dying. Your employees have been dying. You practically took down a team of safety inspectors. I see the guys walking around with the orange safety vests going to do track work and I feel like I have blood on my hands. I understand that accidents happen, but come on. You nearly killed SAFETY INSPECTORS INSPECTING YOUR PROCLIVITY FOR UNSAFE PRACTICES. Surely you can do better than that.
  2. Tourists and interns are only allowed to ride in designated cars. They talk. They make repeated trips to the map to see where they have to get off. They ask me questions about pandas and the Mall and Senate Rotunda and I’m just sick of acting nice.  The final straw came last month when a guy with his family sat down next to me and (ignoring the earphones I was wearing which were playing loud music) asked how to get to the zoo? I told him the map says to get off at Woodley Park, but really since he had a small child with him, I would get off at Cleveland Park and walk downhill to the zoo rather than uphill. He thanked me and then asked, “Are you Jewish?” I told him I was because I couldn’t think of reason not to. “Leave it to a Jew to think of something like that.” I’m not sure whether I should have been insulted by the stereotype, or offended on behalf of all non-Jews who understand both DC geography and the laws of gravity sufficiently to conclude that walking downhill is easier than walking uphill? Probably both. Either way, I’m done with them.
  3. Sell more advertising space on your trains. Have you been to New York? They’re selling every inch of those trains for ad space. I get bored looking at ads for defense contractors, so let’s get some more variety (and ad revenue) going to break up the monotony.
  4. Bring back the recording of the bitchy lady who told me to “Stand clear of the doors. Thank You!” I kinda had a thing for her.

None of those items should cost you money, and #1 and #3 will actually save or make you more money. So maybe I won’t have to be so eager for you to raise my fares again. Sound fair?

Love and kisses,





Filed under Commuting

4 responses to “Dear Metro: Fare is Fair

  1. Mel

    I want each car to be outfitted with a disco ball to give Metro that party atmosphere that it so richly deserves.

    Please, you do not attract nearly as many crazies when you are riding alone than when I am riding with you.


  2. Fred

    Or take a page from the Metro North Rail Line and attach a bar car to select Red Line trains on Friday evenings.


  3. LJ

    I love it – first car of every train could be the quiet car. No interns allowed. The back of the train can be for rowdy hooligans like Fred.


  4. jim

    Great post. I agree. Bar car and intern tourist car. Don’t forget a car for people with luggage, bikes, strollers, and other large objects.


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