Wednesday, January 10, 2007

CTA: get it the fuck together

The joys of public transportation. Shuffling into an overpacked, hot, dirty El car. Dealing with all array of random crazies, scammers, vagrants, stinky people and Loyola students. Blankly staring at the train map overhead, trying to decipher Spanish advertisments, or, worse yet, reading the RedEye in order to avoid awkward eye contact with your fellow passengers. Every now and then something exciting happens, a drug-deal gone awry or a drunk dude collapsing, but basically it's just one of the unpleasant necessities of living in the City. Which is how we looked at it until this past summer, when the trains began arriving 30 minutes after we reached the platform, stopping on the tracks for goddamn Ever, and basically making us even later than we always are. Naturally, everyone got pissed. A series of articles appeared in the RedEye (which isn't that fun? reading about how awful the El is while sitting stopped in an El car?), and people switched to the bus or just got angrier on the train. Now comes news that we have 2 more years of sketchy El service to look forward to, the trains are going to run backwards around the loop, and will be running on 3 tracks instead of 4.

There really has to be a better way than this. By the time the new El is up and barely running, Northsiders will have figured out alternative transportation. Suggestions, hilarious El stories, or if you would like to start a carpool: please comment.


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