Thursday, March 27, 2008

Policy you can roll with!

Ok, this is might be only vaguely related to public policy but I wanted to mention it anyway. I ride the NYC subway every single day to come to work. The yellow line I ride is not by any means the most crowded in the city, but it can get a little close. I however, live at the end of the line so I always get a seat on my way into Manhattan.

This morning on my ride in someone rolled their carry on luggage style (and size) bag into the train car at the most crowded stop on the line. What struck me about the scene is that because her bags were larger than what is considered "normal" rush-hour size she recieved penetrating glares from every rider near her, as if to say "How Dare you?" And she bore a look of shame for having broken one of the cardinal rules of commuting-Be as small a possible.

It was then I began thinking, that we as a population, simply deal with what we are handed. We expect over crowded subways, despite rises fares and tax hikes to pay for improvements. So rather than getting mad at the MTA for providing more trains more often for my commuting dollars, we get mad at the woman with a carry-on. Fascinating what we'll tolerate.

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