Tuesday, June 05, 2007


I like to write about things I experience that are new, or different from what I normally experience. Today I have had just such an experience. I have written before about flying Continental from Chicago to Newark, New Jersey. Notwithstanding that trip I continue to fly into Newark when Midtown Manhattan is my destination. I just can't beat taking the NJ Transit train in to Penn Station for convenience.

Anyway, on the way out this time there was "weather" at each end of my flight. For the uninitiated, "waether" means "bad weather" in the airline context. Obviously there was weather, but in this case, it was wind and rain. In any case, we were delayed. The New Jersey contingent was not pleased. They all called home to confirm that it was, in fact, raining in Newark. And in Saddlesore Junction. And in Upper Nobodycares. And in Lower Whatever. As if we could only take off if it would stop raining in Cherry Valley. The other beautiful thing about the New Jersey contingent: they have great personal style. All of the men follow GQ's advice and wear loafers without socks, both genders have quality fake-and-bakes, and the women all seem to have undertaken "work."

On the way out I saw something I never saw leaving before. For New York Penn Station's New Jersey Transit trains, apparently it is not typical for the same trains to be on the same tracks every day. That and you have to go a good story below ground to get on the train, and the passage way is pretty narrow. It is a bottleneck. Anyway, vast hordes of people stand looking at the information boards, poised for action. As soon as the track is posted they dash for it to get there first. This, as opposed to New Jersey Transit just always putting the 5:42 Princeton on Track 3 every day.

Is that any way to run a city?


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