11/27/2005

need a lift?

I walked to the Shaw's supermarket on the other side of the JFK/UMass T station. I needed some sour cream, you know, and none of the little markets this side of JFK have it. Can you believe it? And ever since I lived in Hungary, I have to have it with everything. I'm not joking, or only just a little. I have it in my soup (no brainer), in lasagna, on spaghetti. Goes great with Italian, Indian, Asian. Whatever. In Hungary people chug it straight, no chaser.

Anyway, the walk there takes me, necessarily, through the T station. That whole area, I'm telling you, if you haven't been there, you gotta see it. It is an engineering and architectural marvel. To me, the most striking feature (and there are so many it is genuinely hard to choose) has got to be the 17.9 mile-long handicap ramp out front. Now, you're totally fucked if you're handicapped and live on the Sydney Street side, like I do, but never mind. The question that always comes to mind when I come or go on the Morrissey Blvd side is, why didn't they just put in a friggin elevator? I mean, seriously, this ramp is off the hook. It's like something from The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T.

I always try to give the T-sters the benefit of the doubt (honest), so I was trying to think of why they didn't go the elevator route. I don't think the ramp was any cheaper. It's about as long as the Great Wall of China and can be seen clearly from outer space. I was thinking maybe it had to do with people abusing the lift. Like, not handicap people, but just sods who are too lazy to walk up and down the stairs. But then to think that they're punishing the handicapped for the sins of the able-bodied. That's just plain not nice. They could easily have some kind of card for the handicapped--with a magnetic strip, just like a Charlie card--that you'd have to have to get access to the elevator. That would pretty much solve that problem, wouldn't it?

But it's better not to start thinking about it, because when you do, you realize how sadistic that ramp really is. I can't imagine having to wheel myself up--or down--it. It seems sisyphean on the one hand, and suicidal on the other.

By the way, once you get into the station there is a lift, but, honestly, I don't know who uses it.

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