Riding Metro North later today? If so, do yourself a favor and hole up in the Bar Car and/or sit quietly while minding your own damn business, whether or not you suspect the driver is doing the crossword puzzle while driving, which he or she probably most definitely is. After a video shot by a passenger last week showing “a Metro North engineer engrossed in a newspaper while operating a rush hour train” resulted in the guy being suspended pending an investigation, fellow railroad workers, rather than making a big show of proving they don’t all catch up on the news while driving, have responded by more or less telling riders, “We don’t come to where you work and slap the dick out of your mouth.” Read more »
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Confidential To Connecticut Commuters: Bypass Parking Lot Purgatory And Still Be Able To Look Yourself In The MirrorBy Bess Levin
How does one know when they’ve made it in Connecticut? Is it when their net worth is north of $5 billion? Is it when news of their impending arrival downtown causes workers to roll out the fleece carpet? Is it when the Radio City Christmas Spectacular becomes known as the poor man’s version of the holiday light display on their front lawn? Is it when they can finger a horse and no one says anything? None of the above, peasants. One knows they’ve made it in Connecticut when they can board the Metro North train without having to walk 12 miles to the platform in the morning and the same amount back after getting bombed on the way home at night.
In the Metro-North parking lots along Connecticut’s Gold Coast, the haves and the have-nots aren’t defined by their clothes, car or even their net worth. Here, it’s about whether they have a flimsy green piece of paper visible on their dashboards. A public parking pass in this and other towns along the Long Island Sound has become a precious asset. The waiting list for a Fairfield Parking Authority permit has 4,200 people and stretches past six years. In another town, Rowayton, the annual permit sale is an epic frenzy similar to that surrounding the release of a new iPhone, with residents camping out overnight to ensure they get a $325 pass.
Think it’s no big D? Think again. Most people would sell their first born into White slavery for one of these elusive bad boys. Read more »
And yet, no mention of the bar car. Suspect. Read more »
Planning On Riding The Metro-North To Or From Connecticut Tonight? Try And Get A Spot In The Car That Doesn’t Have Its Door Open During The TripBy Bess Levin
Don’t Be Labeled A Degenerate Baby-Killer: The Unofficial Metro-North Railroad Riders Guide to the New Haven LineBy Anonymous
The following entry is by a Dealbreaker reader who shall remain nameless, who counts himself among the contingent making the daily trek between southern Connecticut and New York. In short, it’s the rules that must be abided if you hope to survive the jungle that is the Metro North New Haven commute. Whether you’re a neophyte who just moved out to CT or a resident who just started a new job in Manhattan, someone for whom none of this currently applies but fear it may in your future, or you’ve have been doing this trip for years and have your own tips to add, enjoy.
Just before the turn of the 20th Century, Metro-North Railroad’s New Haven Line carried home its first pack of ambitious, southern Connecticut natives from New York City.
In just over 100 years, this 90-mile stretch of rail has blossomed from a novel idea into a daily constant in the lives of hundreds of thousands of travelers. These people aren’t tourists. They’re longer impressed by the splendor of Grand Central Station’s ceiling astrology. They don’t have time to snap pictures of the giant American flag. And they don’t care if the “Oyster Bar is really good!” These people are men and women, young and old who, day in and day out, brave the true horrors of the New Haven Line so that they can chase the American dream. To those riders I say, “I am one of you. I feel your pain. This guide is written in your honor.”
Phase #1: Making it to your platform Read more »
The only thing it seems we can expect re: bonuses this year is that they’ll be all over the place. Hedge funds are looking at slight increase, many banks are looking at a flat to 30 percent decrease and some people’s bonuses will be so bad they’ve inspired code names like The Zeros. It’s nerve-wracking, to say the least. One thing that’s comforting, however, is to know that there remains group of people confident that compensation 2010 will be generous enough to not disrupt their quality of life, including the Christmas season. Read more »
As many of you are aware, some intimately, the right to get smashed on the ride home is one fiercely cherished and defended at all costs by Team CT Commute. It was something Metro North officials tried at various points over the last couple years to take away to no success. “They’ll have to pry this Tall Boy from my kung-fu like grip,” more than a few people slurred, getting confrontational. It also wasn’t enough to simply be able to purchase booze on board, but highly necessary to have the space to “stand around and talk,” mix it up with fellow financial services hacks and make new “business contacts,” rather than sit at banquette-style tables with some asshole you already know from work, a war currently being fought as designs for new cars and their bar cars are finalized.
Strangely, though, we’ve never discussed what exactly one is pounding in the 39 to 55 minutes you have before getting off. Luckily, the Times has investigated the situation. Read more »
“All train traffic in and out of Grand Central Terminal has been suspended, after a fire broke out underneath the 138th Street Bridge, which is owned by Metro-North and which carries all four Metro-North tracks. Officials said they believed that a wooden pier beneath the bridge that serves as a bumper for ships caught fire about 11:38 a.m.” [City Room]
Gather round Team CT Commute and those who care about their plight. We’ve got good news and bad news to discuss. First, the good. A few years back, your right to the one thing that makes the lives of people slogging back to CT each day after what was probably a miserable twelve hours on the job worth living was threatened. Obviously I’m talking about the right to get smashed on the ride home. They wanted to take that way from you, and they tried, hard. Unfortunately they didn’t anticipate just how important Happy Hour on Wheels is to your existence, or that the proposed ban would awaken a fire no one saw coming. You fought back and you won. And all was good in the world, for a while. Then, a few months ago, it happened again. Citing the “recession,” officials said that new trains might not include a place to booze it up, claiming more seats are a bigger priority than the bar car. It was like they were trying to suck out our wills to live. Things have been tense to say the least since then, operating in a state of uncertainty, not knowing if today would be the last day you’d get to mix it up with your fellow financial services hacks while chugging a Tall Boy. This morning though, news came over the wire that should offer some relief:
It looks like the party will keep on rolling on the Metro-North Railroad’s Connecticut trains, as officials are moving forward with plans to replace out-of-date bar cars with new ones.
Having said that, the bad news is that whoever is in charge of designing these things apparently has never ridden a bar car, or he/she would understand there are some serious design flaws to the plans. Currently, the set up of the old cars facilitates situations like this: Read more »
Metro-North Officials Contemplating Ruining The Lives Of Connecticut-Dwelling Financial Services HacksBy Bess Levin
Listen up. Something serious is going on. I’m not talking about Goldman v. the SEC and I’m not talking about Obama’s scheduled hate speech. I’m talking about the one thing that makes the lives of those of you slogging back to Connecticut each day after what was probably a miserable twelve hours on the job worth living– I’m talking about the right to get smashed during the commute. You fought the proposed ban on Happy Hour on Wheels a few years back and you won. And now, due to the “recession,” officials are saying that new trains may not included a place to booze it up, claiming that more seats are a bigger priority than the bar car, or something like that (I stopped paying attention because I was so seething mad, for you). I know it’s wrong, you know it’s wrong, and eventually it’s gonna kill a few people, either due a stress-related heart attack, or by sucking out their will to live. Read more »