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Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Bye bye Joe Lhota, hello Sadie the cat? Humor Photos

Friday, December 21st, 2012

In case you missed it, two big things in MTA land went down this week – (or should I say up?) fare increases are totally happening in March, and Chairman and CEO of the MTA, Joe Lhota, will be resigning. We’ve certainly had a seemingly endless revolving door in terms of MTA chiefs. Lhota has been at the helm of the MTA for just about a year, so I guess he didn’t really set any records for longest time served.

People have been debating who should get the nomination to replace Lhota, and if you ask me, it should totally go to Sadie the subway cat! A few weeks ago I updated you on Sadie, who formerly worked at the New York Transit Museum, but has since retired. I had a chance to talk to the wonderful museum employee who has adopted Sadie, and it seems that she is certainly enjoying retired life…

The subway kitty is now an apartment kitty, and with a nice view!

I bet we could convince Miss Sadie to take the post as chief of the MTA, though. Think about it, we’d just have to pay for her cat food, litter and vet care, and that can’t be more than $1,000 a year, right? That is a bargain compared to the $350,000 that Jay Walder got paid in 2010 as MTA chief. And it wouldn’t be the first time a feline was in an executive position at a transportation company – just ask Japanese cat Tama, who worked herself up from the position of Stationmaster, to Super Stationmaster, and now Chief Operating Officer at the Wakayama Electric Railway. Apparently putting animals in executive positions at railroad companies seems to be a perfectly acceptable business practice in Japan. So why not hire a cat and get ridership up?

In other news, when it comes to the cuteness factor, Sadie beats Joe Lhota hands down. Jay Walder, too.
Sorry, Joe Lhota.

In all seriousness, it will be interesting to see who will be replacing Lhota. And a little bit of a shame, as I thought he seemed pretty competent. (And yes, I admit, I always thought he was pretty cool for actually starting and maintaining a twitter account.) The likelihood of a cat getting the position is probably less than the world ending tonight, so we certainly wish Sadie the best, and to keep enjoying her retirement. But on the off chance that she does get the job, I know who Sadie can hire as her deputy!

The trains aren’t running? GOOD!

Celebrating Grand Central Terminal’s Centennial: The 100 for 100 Project Events History Photos

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Provided you haven’t been living under a rock recently, you may have heard that Grand Central Terminal’s Centennial is fast approaching. While Metro-North will be kicking off celebrations in February, I thought it would be more fun to get the party started now. That’s why I Ride the Harlem Line will be counting down the next 100 days to Grand Central’s Centennial with a historical photo of the Terminal. That’s right – 100 historical photos, posted one per day, for the next 100 days. I like to call it the Grand Central 100 for 100 Project. While there will, of course, be a few iconic photos in the mix that you’ve certainly seen before, I’m hoping that the majority of them you haven’t seen. It is a great way to visually explore the history of the Terminal, and to see Grand Central in a new light.

Grand Central is truly a monument of New York City. Not only is it functionally important – a great example of what a train station should be – it is architecturally significant, and paramount, an important precedent for historical preservation in the United States. Besides all that, Grand Central means a lot to me – and this is one of the few ways a lowly commuter interested in history such as myself can celebrate it. Grand Central, and its Centennial Committee, plan to hold their festivities on the first of February – which seems entirely appropriate – for the committee contains the rich, and the famous. Grand Central unofficially opened on the First of February in 1913 – not to the public, but to the rich and the famous. It was not until the gorgeous Information Booth clock’s hands moved to midnight, commencing the new day of February 2nd, that the Terminal opened to the public. Thus, February 2nd is the day that our project will be counting down to, one photo at a time.

A poster advertising Grand Central Terminal’s opening on February 2nd, 1913.

Our photographic countdown will be comprised of nine different topics, with the photos in each moving in a roughly chronological order. Posting a new photo on the blog every day doesn’t seem to be the best format in which to present these images – thus I’ve decided that the better place to post them all will be on social media. Facebook and Twitter are conducive to sharing – and I want you to share these photos. I want everyone to celebrate Grand Central and its 100th birthday – for it is our monument, not just a pretty building for the privileged.

Part 1: Construction of Grand Central Terminal
Thursday, October 25th

Part 2: Outside views, and the Changing Urban Landscape
Sunday, November 4th

Part 3: Waiting for the Train
Saturday, November 10th

Part 4: Trains in the Terminal
Sunday, November 18th

Part 5: Famous Faces
Friday, November 30th

Part 6: Around Grand Central
Sunday, December 9th

Part 7: The Main Concourse
Saturday, December 29th

Part 8: Noteworthy Events in the Terminal
Wednesday, January 9th

Part 9: Grand Central Terminal, Restored
Thursday, January 24th

So today, we begin. The first photo, and all subsequent photos, will be posted daily at 11 AM. Make sure to like or subscribe over on Facebook, or follow @mtaHarlemLine or the hashtag #100for100GCT on Twitter to see all the photos. There is also an unofficial countdown clock on the top of this site, which will link to the project photos, and count down to the centennial. We’ll also be celebrating with other Grand Central-themed posts over the span of the next hundred days, and will have something special on Grand Central’s birthday, February 2nd. Let the festivities begin!

Metro-North – on a mission to clean your potty mouth Humor

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

There are quite a few things that Metro-North could be doing right now to make our train rides better. Attempting to rid the internet of profanity probably isn’t one of those things. Every time I see one of the many tweets like this, it cracks me up:

Metro-North’s twitter is apparently being run by someone who does not understand how twitter even functions (more about that here). Messages sent to the Metro-North twitter account aren’t really “public.” Unless I am following the person, I’d have to dig around to actually find the tweets. Hilariously, by posting these things, Metro-North is actually calling attention to them. In fact, I would never have seen this gem of a conversation, if they didn’t call attention to it.

Maybe we ought to focus our energies in helping people? Instead of telling them to call 511? (oops, sorry folks in Connecticut. You need to dial 877-690-5114 to call “511″) Better yet, you totally should have called out that guy for improper use of “you’re” – clearly that was the biggest offense in that tweet!

But really, @MetroNorthTweet, thanks. Every time I need a little chuckle, I’ll turn to you. Good luck getting rid of profanity on the internet, the moon from the night sky, or the drunks from your late night trains.

In other news, today’s Tuesday Tour is coming, but will be slightly late – likely be posted sometime this afternoon.

Nobody likes a late train… and other such twitter nonsense Humor

Friday, November 11th, 2011

One of the things I hate more than being dull and serious is a late train. To amuse myself while waiting for late trains, I began using twitter to invent odd reasons for the lateness. Derailed circus trains, planking customers, and rabid pigeons have all been presented as reasons for lateness, despite their relative insanity. Although it started as a joke, I now feel the obligation to come up with something crazy every time I hear there is a late train.

Below you will find some of my favorite nonsensical tweets about late trains, several of which have been designed to annoy @MetroNorthTweet. Over the years, Metro North’s twitter account has been operated by several individuals – the most recent of which has decided twitter is absolutely pointless and is not a platform in which customers can be helped. Their current modus operandi is to copy and paste to everyone “call 511, idiots, twitter sucks.” The new tweeter also made it a point to unfollow me, though to my immense amusement they are still best pals with @fuckedcommuter. A fine endorsement for the railroad, I see. If you want to read more about my thoughts on Metro-North’s attempts at social media, you can find it here. But now, onto the insanity:

Note: Gregory, occasional blog reader, railfan, and photographer was that week arrested for train photography at the Virginia Road crossing in North White Plains. He claimed that while this was all ensuing, police asked him if he knew “the cat girl.”

Based upon a factual incident, where 3 young females attempted to fit into an M3 bathroom. Clearly they should have waited for a train using M7 equipment.

By all means, if you have a suggestion for a future reason for a “train delay” – please comment. And if you’re not following me on twitter, you totally should.

Metro North thinks that twitter sucks…

Friday, November 11th, 2011

Over the years, Metro North’s twitter account (@MetroNorthTweet) has been operated by several individuals (two of which are most wonderful folks) – the most recent of which has decided twitter is absolutely pointless and is not a platform in which customers can be helped. Their current modus operandi is to copy and paste to everyone “call 511, idiots, twitter sucks.” The new tweeter also made it a point to unfollow me, though to my immense amusement they are still best pals with @fuckedcommuter. A fine endorsement for the railroad, I see.

Unfortunately, I thought the railroad was actually doing pretty well in terms of social media. In fact, I thought the way they handled Irene was commendable. There were frequent photographic updates on flickr, many of which were picked up by various arrays of media outlets. In fact, a photograph taken by Metro-North spokeswoman Marjorie Anders pretty much went viral, was talked about by thousands, and was even a trending topic on twitter. Companies pay to get their topics trending on twitter. Metro-North did this organically. And you know what? I bet all of nobody at the company even knew it. So although there is a lot to learn, they were on the right track.

Well, that is, until they dropped the ball on twitter. Twitter is now merely a platform to refer people to 511. End of story. How unfortunate. You can see my conversation to the right with the new @MetroNorthTweet – and the other people who just happened to chime in, which was never my intention, but thus the spirit of twitter. Since they don’t believe that people can actually be helped on twitter, I decided to come up with a list of times that I was helped by twitter… and for the record, I am sure there are many more that I do not remember.

• Goldens Bridge station was graffitied. Reported via blog and twitter. Was cleaned up within two weeks.

Glass panels in the doors at Goldens Bridge were kicked in. Was repaired within a week.

• Was extremely irate due to being detained by a track worker who eventually called the cops on me for photography. After blogging and being angry on twitter about it, @MetroNorthTweet talked to me, and turned me into a friend. That on its own should be a fairly powerful statement, because I was seeing stars angry.

• As a personal favor to me, I requested that @MetroNorthTweet investigate a situation where I was trapped in an elevator at the White Plains train station. After being stuck for a half hour, by the time I was rescued by the fire department, my train had just arrived on the platform and I ran off to catch it. I felt bad that I did not appropriately thank them, and after Joe was able to figure out who it was that rescued me, I telephoned with my gratitude.

• Goldens Bridge station was again graffitied, reported on twitter and taken care of within a week.

• Reported via twitter that CooCoo was not appropriately serving schedules for Beacon – it only showed schedules for Beacon Falls. This bug has since been fixed.

• Me and countless others have reported things like air, heat, or announcements in train cars not working via twitter. @MetroNorthTweet always followed up on these for us. The real question is, if not on twitter, who would we even call about this, or even about vandalization in our stations? I’m not going to spend ten years talking to a robot and wishing and hoping for an operator that can speak English with 511.