Wednesday, September 27, 2006

It's a conversation between A and B...

I sat next to a friendly blind man today who really wanted to talk during the ride from SF to East Bay. We chatted sporadically about BART's accessibility for the blind (to that, he says BART is not bad but it is important for the station agents and the train operators to speak loudly, slowly and clearly), his desire to find a job, and how he became independent as a blind. I found his independence and self-sufficiency very impressive. During our chat, the train operator announced, "We have been asked to be on a holding pattern. We will be moving in just a moment." Everyone sighed and whined.

The blind man said half sarcastically, "Oh great, just what we need, another delay. Always happens to me." At this moment, the train air system shuts down. The man said, "Great, now the engine shuts down. We are going to be stuck here for some time." He chuckled and shook his head. I didn't think anything of it and just responded, "Gosh, I hope not."

At this time, a random woman sitting across from us yells at him impatiently, "It's not the engine. There is no engine on BART. There is no motor on BART! We are not going to be stuck here. There is not need to panic and exaggerate and make everyone miserable!!!"

What the heck is her problem? No one asked her for opinion. No one asked her to listen or butt in our conversation! There are at least 50 others within a distance that could hear what we are saying but no one else complained. What is her issue? I didn't say anything back to her. The blind man didn't do anything either. I just looked at her with one raised eyebrow.

The train started moving after 3 minutes on hold. Still, who asked for her opinion? We can say whatever we's not like his statement was that far from the truth!


Anonymous said...

What a coincidence, I was sitting directly across from you. I was the person who told him the traction motors hadn't died when the motor alternator dropped out (the MA operates all the auxiliary functions like lights and air conditioning but it doesn't run the traction motors, which run the train).

Hi. You were very nice to him.

bartmusings said...

That would be a huge coincidence. You seem too nice to be that person though. That person didn't offer this detailed explanation and was very mean. Was this around 4pm?

Anonymous said...

I didn't say that and you know it. I said the engine hadn't died, the train was fine, and that the MA was probably malfunctioning and would probably kick on and off again during the trip. I remember saying that because he seemed alarmed and I wanted him to know that it would probably happen again and it was nothing to worry about.

Everything else you said must have come out of your head because it didn't come out of my mouth.

Jeez, now I have wonder if all the other things you've said here are over the top exaggerations as well.

bartmusings said...

OK. You can believe what you want to believe. This is a place for me to share my observations. Thats' all. I'm glad that you have commented.

Anonymous said...

By the way, I'm a former BART employee. It's not even remotely possible that I would ever say that BART has no engines. You, lady, are a little nuts.

bartmusings said...

thanks for your comment. if you still insist that i was writing about you, that's fine. feel free to leave as many objections and assumptions as you'd like.

i value your BART knowledge and hope that you will continue to share feedback and share your knowledge of how BART works.

have a nice weekend.