This Is How I React When Somebody Asks Me About The Hamptons Subway And Old Man McGumbus

I was in Southampton Village Hall on Friday grabbing a beach parking sticker for my car and when I gave the woman at the counter my name, I was asked by a lady standing away from me an interesting question.

“Are you David Rattiner from Dan’s Papers?”


“Oh I just love you and your father’s articles. I’ve been coming out to the Hamptons from New Jersey for the last five years and I’m just obsessed with the paper. I wanted to ask you something, what’s the deal with this guy Old Man McGumbus from Shelter Island? I know that the Hampton Subway is a hoax, but is this guy McGumbus a real person?”

“The Hampton Subway isn’t a hoax.”


“It’s very much a real thing. You don’t know about it?”

“You’re pulling my leg.”

“A lot of people think it’s a hoax. It isn’t. The reason people say it’s a hoax is because the stations are not easy to get to because there is no parking around them, and the trains are almost never on time and it’s pretty much not used by very many people because everybody drives. But it’s real.”

“Really? I didn’t know.”

“Just call the MTA, they will give you the schedule. I have to get going. Oh and yes, Old Man McGumbus is absolutely real. He just is so old that nobody knows what to do with him when he’s arrested, and his crimes are never really that violent, so people just tolerate it.”

“That’s too funny. I wasn’t sure.”

“Nice meeting you. Thanks for reading, it’s so cool when people tell me they read what I write, I appreciate it.”




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