Week of September 11–17, 2014
Riders this past week: 15,423
Rider miles this past week: 99,745
DOWN IN THE TUBE
Traveling on Hamptons Subway from Bridgehampton last Thursday afternoon were Billy Joel, Paul Simon, Suzanne Vega, Madonna, J.Lo, Justin Bieber, Shania Twain, Caroline Doctorow, Nancy Atlas and Jimmy Buffett. As soon as they found they were all on the same subway train going to the same stop (Sag Harbor), although for different reasons, they assembled in one car and began having a grand old time. Six degrees of separation and stuff like that. But no music was played or sung. Rules, you know.
SUDDEN DROP IN RIDERSHIP
Because last week was the week after Labor Day, we experienced a great drop in ridership, which is normal. That this drop coincided with the first week at work of our new marketing director, Ben Harris, who had never been on Long Island before, caused problems. Harris formerly was marketing director for FEMA, Louisiana District, and in his innocence, he took this drop in ridership very personally. He had a very public emotional breakdown. He told our Commissioner Bill Aspinall, the man who hired him, that this could not possibly have been his fault so soon after his having been hired and maybe somebody was out to get him and if so Aspinall should contact the police. Harris then offered to resign, which Bill regretfully accepted.
As it is after Labor Day and we operate with a much smaller staff, we are asking all riders to be aware that they might be asked to help out if a hurricane is coming. The most vulnerable stops on the subway are those at the two public beaches in Southampton and East Hampton, where riders disembark onto the sand of Cooper’s and Main Beach, from the subway “spur” that takes them from their respective Main Streets. Next time you use the subway, make note of the huge pile of 10,000 sandbags, which form a tall pyramid against the dunes next to the subway exits at the beach. If a hurricane approaches, and you are on the subway, you could be asked to join the “bucket brigade,” the chain of people moving the sandbags one at a time from the pile to the entryway to block that entrance. You will feel good about yourself for doing this. And busses at the beach will take you back to Main Street. After the hurricane passes and all is clear, look for the green flags, which will be posted at the entry stairs to the subway stops in Southampton and East Hampton. That will mean the “spurs” are back open. Orange flags mean we’re not open yet, but please drive down to either beach to rejoin in the effort to get those entrances back open. As I am sure you know, there needs to be two exits to every tunnel. Fire department regulations.
COMMISSIONER FESSES UP
Yes it’s true that Muriel Aspinall, our Commissioner’s wife, has accepted gifts of lingerie and perfume from the billionaire owner of a health food company who expected preferential access to Hamptons Subway. None was offered, however. She had a crush on this man. But Bill did not. So the billionaire got zilch. Also because Hamptons Subway is privately owned and Bill Aspinall is the major stockholder, he can pretty much do whatever he wants. Who cares anyway?
COMMISSIONER ASPINALL’S MESSAGE
It’s true my wife and I had a little spat over the summer. What husband and wife team doesn’t? But we’re back together again and it won’t affect how the subway is run in any way. Nobody gets any free subway tokens. Ever.