The Hamptons Subway: Week of May 3–9, 2013

Sarah Jessica Parker
Sarah Jessica Parker. Credit: David Shankbone

Riders this past week: 8,821

Rider miles this past week: 96,566


Sarah Jessica Parker and her kids were on the train headed from Amagansett to Montauk on Tuesday. Christie Brinkley was headed toward Sag Harbor from Bridgehampton on Friday at 2 p.m. Bill Clinton was going toward Bridgehampton from Southampton with a bag of golf clubs under his arm. He’s a frequent guest at the Atlantic.


Just installed for the upcoming summer season is a new subway sound system where you’ll hear “Watch Out for the Closing Doors” loud and clear instead of “Mfffff Mfff for mff Closmmmf Doommf” with the old out-of-date system. The new system began operations last Monday, and Hugh Henry, who’s been making the announcements for all these years, began at 9 a.m. to say “Watch out for the closing doors” into his microphone, but it still came out “Mfffff Mfff for mff Closmmmf Doommf,” which had everybody scratching their heads. Turns out that’s simply how Hugh Henry talks. So on the new, or the old, it comes out the same. Employees at subway headquarters in Hampton Bays did say that Henry was always very quiet when he came into work, and nobody noticed how he talked before. This does bring up whether the money was well spent bringing in the new system, but it’s done and that’s that. Instead, Henry was given four weeks notice on account of his long and steady service with the company, and now Billy Longjohn from Liverpool says the line loud and clear with an English accent. As for Henry, he was miffed and did call a press conference out on the front steps of the Subway building, but those from the media attending said after it was over they couldn’t understand a word he said.


The Hamptons Subway building has been refurbished and repainted inside and out and for the first time is now offering the use of the company cafeteria for large parties, weddings, anniversaries, bar mitzvahs and other events, as long as they’re in the evening and not when lunch is served. It’s decorated now in cheery maroon curtains and there is a special maroon cover that goes over the kitchen appliances, sinks, stoves and refrigerator units for such occasions. The Hamptons Subway building, built in 1934, is on Ponquogue Avenue in Hampton Bays and is the only work in America designed by the famed German architect Albert Speer in his monumental fascist style. Call Hamptons Subway to schedule your event. Prices are reasonable.


As you may recall, the Harris Paint Company persuaded management to try their glow-in-the-dark paint on one of the subway tunnels. The tunnel between Quogue and Quiogue was chosen. The paint is a government-approved paint that when struck by a light, glows. It was felt that when a train headlight would strike the walls of a dark tunnel, the paint would light the way, but that is not what happened. A subway would come through, striking the paint, but the paint takes 45 seconds before it starts to glow, so the train still had to go through in the dark. Also, the glow was worn out by the time the next train came through 10 minutes later. The tunnels have been scrubbed free of the stuff.


I have been very happy with the newsletter editorial staff this year. I am awarding them a first prize award as “best subway newsletter for 2012” and all 12 staff members will receive a lapel pin to that effect at lunch next Friday.

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