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Rough days on the MBTA

Posted by Jeremy C. Fox  March 15, 2013 06:14 PM

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Blue Line Feb 2013.jpg

Jeremy C. Fox for Boston.com

These riders waited peacefully for the Blue Line train.

Rough days on the MBTA

Storified by Jeremy C. Fox· Fri, Mar 15 2013 15:12:31

People joke a lot about the frustrations and perils of the MBTA -- that's one of the major reasons this page exists.

But sometimes a situation gets serious, and there is real danger to think about. The past few weeks have seen a shooting at a bus stop, a bus driver attacked by a mob of young people, another bus driver spat upon when he asked a woman to leave because she had not paid her fare, and a person trapped under an Orange Line train.

No one expects a commute on public transit to be a limo ride with champagne and caviar, but neither passengers nor drivers should have to worry about their safety when they step onto a bus or train.

This week's first #MBTAannoy tweet had these issues in mind:
This is beyond #mbtaannoy. Armed robberies, bus confrontations, even a bus murder. And yes, all south and east of the Orange Line. #mbtawhy?Jules Wang
While Jules was concerned about those issues, many of this week's tweeters were focused on the more common concerns of long waits, often caused by questionable planning:
Two C trains, three D (2 with three cars), and one B. Guess which one I needed and which one was so packed I couldn't fit on? #MBTAannoyKyle W. Kerr
One car train on the B line at 6pm?! ONE? Seriously #MBTAannoy 'd right now. Come on, @mbtaGM! You guys aren't this dumb...Kyle W. Kerr
Stopped South of Park in packed train last in a 5 train pack I hate the Red Line #mbtaannoy #mbtarev8056
21 minutes between Braintree trains in peak rush hour Well done again @mbtaGM #mbta #mbtaannoyrev8056
On the positive side been sitting here so long now we first of 4 train pack #mbtabrag #mbtarev8056
I posit that by schedule adjustment the mbta means let's sit here in the middle of rush hour and see how many people squeeze on #mbtaannoycharlene mcbride
@mbtagm thx for canceling my train and doubling my commute home. So glad I am paying over $200/month for this service. #sarcasm #mbtaannoyMichelle
.@mbtaGM Why are trains running 15 minutes apart? It's rush hour! #mbta #mbtaannoy #redlineSabrinaTheWiseLatina
8 minutes between trains on the orange line. How is this rush hour? #MBTAannoyKneeAnalogue
Stuck on orange line between Wellington & Sullivan. We might be stuck until they finish the useless Assembly Sq station. #MBTAannoyPeter Winson
@mbtaGM you would think 45 minutes to go 7 stops on the orange line would be plenty of time. I guess not. #mbtaannoyJennifer O'Neil
Thank @mbtaGM late for a job interview and I left 20 minutes earlier than I needed to leave. Great job. #mbtaannoyJennifer O'Neil
I'm never checking a bus schedule again. #bookoflies #mbtaannoy @mbtaGMChelsea Bathurst
5 days in a row with red line delays. Well done #mbta #MBTAannoyRhiannon Gorham
But even the longest wait and the slowest train are better than being abandoned entirely:
It's really cool of the 4 to blow off its last Tide St pickup of the day and completely throw a wrench into my dinner plans #mbtaannoy #mbtaJess Infante
At least one commuter managed not to face any of these issues:
Gorgeous sunny Monday! No #MBTA problems today either! #Boston #MBTAbrag #MBTAmiracleRed Line Commuter
Kyle and Melinda, meanwhile, were distracted by malfunctioning equipment:
Heater on this bus in blowing at full blast. Gonna need another shower by the time I get to work. #melting #MBTAannoyKyle W. Kerr
The ‘doors closing’ tone has been playing random versions of itself throughout this entire #OrangeLine ride. #MBTAannoyMelinda
Other passengers were faced with human behavior that was less frightening than gunfire or assault, but still pretty annoying:
Dear couple licking each other on the red line. #GetARoom #MBTAannoyRachel Heaton (Ryan)
#FFS it's rush hour! Step ALL the way into the train and don't spread yourself out when someone vacates a seat. #mbta #mbtaannoyBurple Yak
Stepped off the train to let people off. Train filled up. Now I'm waiting for the next one. #MBTAannoyLindsay
5:53 am and plenty of seats and you have to cram yourself next to me! #MBTAannoy #Seriously #FMLRed Line Commuter
#MBTAannoy The #MBTA is not your bathroom #keepitathome http://pic.twitter.com/4UbioyE9jALiz
Who are these ppl with their backpacks on wheels?! #pickitup #MBTA #MBTAannoyRed Line Commuter
Really? Speakerphone on a crowded train?!? #mbtaannoy #wtfKrista Marie
5:55 from N Station to Beverly. Guy next to me = on his phone. SPEAKER phone. Really? #MBTAannoyLesetchka
Apparently using speakerphone on a crowded train is a thing now. But while some abuse technology, others find charming ways to combine it with tradition.
The Implementation of the Technology Modernized Freedom Trail has begun. Plymouth Plantation's begins soon. #mbtabrag http://pic.twitter.com/BfgDoobICgJules Wang
Though some riders drove their fellow passengers crazy this week, other people on the T got rave reviews, like this Transit Police officer:
A transit cop ON the subway? First time ever in over 28 years. Do it more. #MBTABRAGDoug Horne
And this conductor:
@mbtaGM #mbtabrag The announcer for Orane line car 01254 is awesome. Give that man a raise for making the commute a little nicer.Neenah Estrella-Luna
And these buskers:
Nice 2 hear string duet version of @BrunoMars #lockedoutofheaven at DTX orange line this morning. Refreshing start 2 a tired day! #mbtaBragJohn Griffin
And the cadre of people who brightened Jules' Wednesday commute:
I'm such a forgetful man. Lost groceries while compacting my profile.Fortunately, #mbtabrag employees of the Blue Line, I thank thee.Jules Wang
#mbtabrag also that they're able to do this at rush hour. Also, to this accordion guy at Bowdoin. Keep on playing.Jules Wang
Even a dog brought some joy to Teesh:
Who brings their beautiful Weimeraner on the E at 6 in the mornin? This is a first...#mbtabragTeesh
Is a stately spaniel brightening your day? Don't forget to tweet about it using #MBTAbrag.

If you see any violence on your bus or train, don't waste your time tweeting -- get to a safe place and use your phone to call 911. But if your fellow passengers only make you wish you could get violent, tweet about it using #MBTAannoy.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @jeremycfox.
Follow Downtown on Twitter: @YTDowntown.

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