Week of July 6–12, 2017
Riders this past week: 49,843
Rider miles this past week: 221,756
DOWN IN THE TUBE
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was seen on the subway heading from Georgica to Springs last Monday afternoon. Mets pitcher Steven Matz was seen traveling with J.Lo between Hampton Bays and Quogue Thursday afternoon.
FIREWORKS ON JULY 4
Monday night the annual fireworks display took place down in the tunnel between Shinnecock and Southampton. People couldn’t see them directly from the platforms but they could see flashes of light and hear thunderous bangs. “The Star Spangled Banner” was sung on both the Southampton and Shinnecock platforms, though not in unison as hoped.
Because of what we thought was a new law tweeted by President Trump against vegetarians, we began turning over all vegetarians using the subway system to the authorities beginning on Monday. These people were approached all day to show their paperwork and a few were given Breathalyzer tests to detect onions and garlic and so forth. Nearly 2,000 vegetarians were rounded up by the end of Monday, but all had to be released Tuesday morning when it was found that the tweet we got from Trump was about Unitarians, not vegetarians, and it had gotten garbled by spell-check.
As we reported last week, teenagers had begun climbing the fence at the Montauk Yards after the system shuts down for the night at 2 a.m. to take the trains out for high-speed joyrides. We suffered 11 days of this with the attendant minor damage to the railway equipment as the kids raced around turns and so forth and so on. But it all stopped on Sunday when 15-year-old Billy Tom Bathgate raced his train out on the subway spur that goes from Jobs Lane in Southampton to Cooper’s Beach. Instead of using the roundabout to come back, he drove the subway car at high speed out through the dead end in the dune and flew it over the beach to crash and burn by the water’s edge, where it was found the next morning. A note was found on his broken body. “I love Gwen,” it said, “and I can’t live like this anymore. Billy.” A minute of silence will be observed throughout the subway system at noon on Saturday.
PRANK AT BRIDGEHAMPTON
As you all know, we get extra subway cars onto the system on the Fourth of July weekend so the trains are 12 cars long. Since the platforms can only accommodate eight cars, the trains come in and stop with the last four cars not at the platform, the doors open for the front eight cars, then the doors close and the trains move forward four car lengths to re-open at the station a second time for the four end cars.
One of our summer interns was fired last Thursday for abusing this maneuver. All he had to do was stand next to the motorman with a microphone and call out the next station and say “watch out for the closing doors.” He would be doing this for one hour. At his first stop, at Water Mill going westbound, after the train stopped the first time, he said, according to witnesses, “Next stop, Southampton. New laser equipment will get this train there in 10 seconds. Please hang on.” The doors closed, then re-opened for the second stop at Water Mill and everybody in the last eight cars got off thinking they were at Southampton. Bye, bye, Henry Pickle. Good luck to you.
COMMISSIONER ASPINALL’S MESSAGE
I understand riders are petitioning to build a statue of me on the Southampton platform. Will wonders never cease?