11/01/2005

JFK to Downtown Xing and back/Frida & Diego

08:59 - arrived at JFK
09:10 - departed JFK
09:19 - arrived Downtown Xing

Total commute: 20 minutes
MBTA estimated total trip time: 8 minutes
discrepancy: +12 minutes
Total time in transit: 9 minutes
Total wait: 11 minutes

11:00 - arrived at Downtown Xing
11:05 - departed Downtown Xing
11:13 - arrived at JFK

Total commute: 13 minutes
MBTA estimated total trip time: 8 minutes
discrepancy: +5 minutes
Total time in transit: 8 minutes
Total wait: 5 minutes

Is it possible that when the MBTA estimates trip time they don't factor in the wait? Is this some kind of denial thing on their part? I mean, if I'm planning my little trip, and want to be somewhere on time, wouldn't I need wait time factored in? Isn't that part of the total trip time? It could be that I missed an asterisk somewhere, and some fine print reading "total trip time does not include the wait." But, hmm, it doesn't seem so.


During my wait at JFK I watched two pigeons mating in the rafters. You could tell they were an old married couple, used to the routine. They necked a little, and then they sort of went off and cleaned themselves, and then they came back and necked some more, which reminded me of Frida Kahlo's philosophy: have sex, wash, repeat. But pigeons apparently mate for life. And, according to a most informative website dedicated to the vile little creatures, the necking is actually called "billing," though there are no invoices involved. I also discovered that pigeons breed all year round--just like us!--and can raise four or five broods annually. Whoever is responsible for the website may be a fellow T commuter, because he certainly has a lot of time on his hands. "The fact is," he writes, "pigeons are special. They are special because there is such variety in the way they look. Blue Jays all look very much alike, and so do robins and cardinals. But find a flock of pigeons and you will see white ones and gray ones. You will see pigeons with blue-gray feathers and pigeons with red feathers. You will see solid-colored pigeons and speckled pigeons. Look long enough and you will be able to tell them apart, give them names, and get to know their habits." Yikes. Hopefully the train will come before it gets to that.


By the way, I think Frida wanted to be monogamous, too, just like pigeons are, but that damned Diego!

Another thing I noticed, when I could tear myself away from the avian festival erotique, was flip-flops. In November. People. Enough with the friggin flip-flops. There's apparently a whole student population out there that either doesn't know how or is too lazy to tie its shoes. That's what velcro's for. I don't want to see your gnarly, blackened and frost-bitten toes come December!

On my way back from the gym (it's near the Chinatown T but I just jog there from Downtown Crossing), I was walking through the tunnel that connects the red and orange lines, and there was a mephistophelian-looking busker. Oddly, we were the only two in the tunnel at the time, and he arched an eyebrow at me as I passed, and sang, "you better call Jesus up and tell 'im whatcha want!" I grinned. Jesus and I are like this, and I happen to know he hates it when people call him up to tell him what they want. He's like, "here, this is Santa's number--call him, for chrissake!" I smiled politely and hustled on down the tunnel, but he started calling after me--singing at the top of his lungs now--"YOU BETTER CALL HIM UP! YOU BETTER TELL HIM WHAT YOU WANT!" He already knows what I want, you evil busker! I need some new luggage and a scratching post for Walter. We've been emailing back and forth about it for months. I even sent him the Petco link. And anyway, if it's that urgent, He'll get in touch with me himself. None of this Joan of Arcadia "what if God were one of us" malarkey. He's got me on speed-dial, Buska Man.

I didn't have to wait long for the train, but when it came it smelled like somebody'd upchucked some Fruity Pebbles or something in it. But it's so unseasonably warm, everything smells funny.



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