Hamptons Subway Newsletter: Week of April 2–9, 2020

Empty Hamptons Subway car
Hamptons Subway cars are empty, Photo: Aleksei Lagutkin/123RF

Week of April 2–9, 2020

No trains are running on the Hamptons Subway, so our celebrity spotters are not able to go out looking for the rich and famous, and as a result there is nothing to report, although you never really know with these people.

Apparently, we are not an “essential business,” so our application to remain open was refused. The Federal Transportation Authority noted in their response memo a number of reasons. One is that the subway is so badly run in the best of times that it doesn’t meet even the lowest standards for such an application. Another is that it is well known that Commissioner Aspinall illegally siphons funds from the Hampton Subway treasury and nothing can be done about it because of his close friendship with the President. We have appealed this horrible decision and it will be reviewed in coming months.

During this time when the Subway is not running, we are offering short-term leases for the use of all 24 of our subway platforms. So far we have two tenants.

One is to the Great Lakes Art Auction House. On the Southampton platform, paintings will be shown via video to prospective bidders either watching via Zoom or listening over the telephone with the auctioneer driving the prices up and up and up until the gavel goes down. Up for sale, weekly, are some of the best paintings ever done of the Great Lakes. Great Lakes Auction House not only auctions off these paintings but also, when sold, will have them delivered to buyers in waterproof cardboard boxes that can be left on doorsteps at no extra charge. The service starts Monday. Contact Great Lakes to get a paddle number.

Our second lease has gone to Gioseppi Figaro, the Hamptons Subway barber, who normally works in his little shop inside the Hamptons Subway building in Hampton Bays. Now, however, he is cutting hair remotely from his home in Flanders. Because the Subway building is closed for the duration, he offers up his special haircuts on the East Hampton platform in a single barber chair and using remote control. He has, he says, developed a flying scissors-and-shaver drone that he can operate using his TV remote from his living room. Visit Gioseppi’s Whiz Bang Barber Shop for the most exacting and perfect cut you have ever had. Payment is to a piggy bank that Gioseppi has set up at the East Hampton token booth outside the turnstiles, and payment is on the honor system.

Ordinarily, much cleaning and pampering is done to the subway trains nightly in the Montauk Yards. But this service was discontinued when the Subway was declared “non-essential.” However, the keys are left in the ignition of all of them, and though an electrified fence surrounds and 10 German shepherds roam the periphery of the Montauk Yards, someone has been stealing the trains.

These past three weeks, the workman doing platform repairs has seen trains rumbling through in both the east and westerly direction at high speed on at least four occasions. Up front in all trains is a uniformed motorman (not our uniforms), and in the cars that follow at what appear to be as least six well-dressed summer people enjoying cocktails and hors d’oeuvres—although they appear to be at least eight feet apart. Beginning tomorrow, keys will no longer be left in the ignitions.


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