Sunday, July 24, 2011

Cause and effect

Sorry, kid, but when you deliberately smack a tree with your balloon animal, you forfeit the right to be upset when one of its little paws pops.

Low. Ri. Der.

Just walked past a guy on the Common who was playing "Low Rider" on the harmonica.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Whoa hey

As much as I like the renovations to Arlington station...and I really do...the wind tunnel effect on the escalator makes it surprisingly difficult to maintain my modesty.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Plan to ponder

If I decide to do a "Christmas In July" thing tomorrow and play entirely Christmukkah songs, will I get tipped well or beaten up?

(For anybody not in the Boston area, we're under an Excessive Heat Warning tomorrow, with a predicted high of 99F and heat index values up to 107F. Yes, I'm sure I shouldn't be busking at all tomorrow, but I like having a house to go back to when I'm done being itinerant.)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wait, what?

Waiting for the train, hear an announcement of an Amber Alert that says to call "nine hundred eleven". There were even hyphens in the text; why is it not automatically programmed to say "nine one one"?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Oh, duh

The ado at Porter was due to the disabled train's actually having broken down in the tunnel between Harvard and Porter and passengers being evacuated. Gotcha.


At least the automated announcement apologizes for "any inconvenience this has caused" instead of "any inconvenience this may cause". But why does it say AleWIFE instead of ALEwife?

(Which reminds me of my nephew thinking it was pronounced "ah-leh-WEE-fay". Which, in fairness, happened the day after I pronounced a certain Cranium category as "sculp-toh-RAH-dayss". It's Sculptorades. I live in a heavily Spanish-speaking area, ok?)


Looks like something happened at Porter. Two ambulances, two fire...vans..., couple Transit police cars. No wait, there are three of all the above, bunch of emergency personnel and a guy with what looks like a news camera. Now I'm wondering if the "disabled train at Harvard" was a front or if something else happened at the same time.

I'm on a bus!



After six full ones, now there are three in a row. I have hope.


That's. Not. Empty. And now people are refusing to get off so the full one can go.

I should probably not have done that

Now I know that I (and the aforementioned bunch of people) have been standing outside for 45 minutes with a heat index of 99° F. Numbers so often make everything worse. So grateful that it's slightly overcast and that I remembered to put on sunscreen.

And yes, there is shade from the station, but there are also a lot of elders and children who need it more than me.

And yes, we could have all walked to Harvard and back by now.

T guy just said he's got two coming empty. Might actually be able to get on one!

And that one... least took some folks. But it seems like they can't take enough to make the waiting crowd any smaller.

So that's a total of four so far that I, and a bunch of other passengers, haven't been able to get on.

And that one... too full to take anybody. At least there is a T guy over here now, trying to keep people out of the street and from trying to force their way onto an already packed bus.

Of course

The shuttle coming from Alewife is already too full to take more than about 10 people.

And again...

No T employee outside and people are making it all the way into the station, only to be turned back at the gates.

(And yes, other passengers are trying to catch these people, but earbuds and paying attention to your surroundings don't always mix. )

Have I mentioned WTF?

The 50 people I was waiting with JUST NOW got told that oh, no, we should be waiting on Holland St. So we dutifully trudged over to join the other 150 folks waiting. People are jumping on the first bus they see just to get SOMEWHERE.

For this, I need Twitter

People trying to use 96 bus as a shuttle. Driver looks confused and alarmed. So far, 1 packed shuttle bus has left in 20 minutes.


Oh, I see. The shuttle is on the opposite side of College Ave, on an unmarked bus. Pretty sneaky, T.


If you're going to SEND people to shuttle buses, how 'bout first making sure there ARE shuttle buses? Maybe some direction too?


Are there any T employees aboveground to tell us where the shuttle is or to stop people from going all the way downstairs only to find the trains are broken? No, there are not.

Oh, Red Line

Sitting in Davis. Two trains have been just sitting for about 10 minutes "due to disabled train at Harvard." says shuttle buses are running outbound from Harvard to Alewife. Nobody has mentioned this to any passengers. Every so often, a knot of inbound passengers get off the train and head upstairs, presumably to regular buses. I'm not gonna busk down here right now because the two idling trains make it impossible to hear announcements anyway.

Oh, now I can hear one of the drivers announcing something on her train, and a bunch of people are leaving. I assume it's about shuttle buses, but those of us outside the trains CAN'T HEAR. going upstairs now.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Day The Music Died

An article about the dissolution of an excellent music program in L.A. and the administration's refusal to answer any questions.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Note to self

If your case is in direct sunlight in mid-80-degree weather, and change has been sitting there for a while, be careful when grabbing a handful of said change. Ow.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Context clues are your friends

Ok, I know some T stations are confusing, but I was busking at Park Street on the Green Line platform, and I observed a young couple staring at the map of the lines, and one said to the other, "So where's the Green Line?"

I don't know; I would think the GREEN maps, the GREEN trains, the GREEN poles and the GREEN signage might provide a clue.

The blind woman who asked me how to find the Red Line was doing a better navigational job than those two. All she needed to know was which side of the construction to be on; she knew exactly where she was going otherwise.

Sound the trumpet

Just saw a guy pedaling his bicycle along the Southwest Corridor, wielding a trumpet. I guess that's an effective way to warn pedestrians, but wouldn't a bike horn or a bell be easier? And safer?

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Was that...?

I could swear I just walked past Bill Gates. Guess there's no reason it couldn't have been.

Sunday, July 03, 2011


I was just busking in the Public Garden when a gust of wind came up and dumped one of my gig books into a fountain. Now I'm sitting on a bench, peeling apart photocopies so they don't dry into a solid mass. Apparently, Mother Nature hates music.

And I'm hungry.