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Commuting joy

2008-08-11 , ,

I ride Amtrak. Frequently. I use it as an inter-city commuter train. I’m not the only one and after two and half years I’m not even close to being a regular, I’ve met fellow riders who make the daily trip to NYC and have done so for nearly thirty years. There is respect for using the time for work and the cars are usually quiet.

A recent trip was like participating in a guerilla public service announcement to stay in school and use family planning. Picture being trapped on a moving bus as too few, poorly socialized adults play zone defense against their too many, even more poorly socialized offspring: loud talk, arguing, parents swearing at kids, kids swearing at each other, music at deafening volumes leaking from headphones that I can hear through my own headphones, spilled food, running in the aisles, playing with doors, tumbling over their own luggage. The families on overcrowded coach flights the day before a major holiday are better behaved.

Then suddenly it all stopped. Silence at the front. All asleep except one boy who quietly played with his video game and occasionally moved around to look out the windows at the end of the car. No one stirred until almost an hour later when the train pulled into Penn.

Bizarre.

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