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Metro Testing New Rail Car

When Metro introduced its newest type of rail car last year, riders were worried -- especially riders within a few inches of 5 feet in height. They didn't like the new design that eliminated the poles at the front and rear of other cars so that riders would move toward the center rather than congregating around the doors.

Eliminating the jam of passengers around the doors was a fine idea in principle, they said, but in practice, everybody knows that trains often stutter to a stop at platforms, and people need something to grab onto. Preferably, something besides each other. Few liked the idea of trying to reach up for overhead railings.

minus the poles.jpg New cars introduced last year, minus the poles. (Robert Thomson)

Today, Metro is going to begin testing one rail car along the Green Line that just might please riders put off by the new design, but there's only one way to find out. See what you think of this new car, which has 20 spring-loaded overhead handles to grab onto. The handles should make the ride steadier for passengers who have trouble reaching the railings.

The test car is being put in service at 2 p.m., traveling from Huntington up to Greenbelt, and then it will stay in service for three months.

This is the second time in about six months that Metro has tested out a new design. There's another car that has been running on various lines, testing a design that reduces the number of two-by two seats facing forward or back, in favor of larger banks of seats against the walls, facing passengers toward the aisle. The idea of that one is to make more room for standees and make it easier for people to get in and out of the seats.

bench seat.jpg This car tested some expanded bench seating.(Robert Thomson)

I like these tests and hope they lead to some wider changes. As ridership grows, Metro has to make the best possible use of the space it has for passengers. There are only so many new cars and so many more trains that can be added to the five lines. At some point, the car design will have to get smarter.

By Robert Thomson  |  February 7, 2007; 6:53 AM ET
Categories:  Metro  
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Comments

I can't believe (well actually I can) that Metro wasted time and money testing the car w/out the poles - what were people supposed to hold onto, when the car was crowded and you couldn't move the middle?

One of the main reasons people don't move to the middle now is that the aisle is narrow and in a crowded car, you'd never make it to the door at your station.

Also, I've always wondered why the didn't run poles from seat to ceiling in the current configuration? The smallish handles really don't work well in crowded conditions.

Metro should focus on using the facing seat configuration (keeping poles near the doors), and opening up the aisles to encourage standees to move toward the middle, and provide easy egress when they arrive at their intended station.

Posted by: Zizzy | February 7, 2007 8:44 AM | Report abuse

For those of us riding the trains from stops toward the end of a line all the way into D.C. and back every day, the new car "designs" promise even less seating, and therefore less comfort, than we have today. It looks as though more standing commutes are in store for me and my neighbors.

As the trains are today, there are often no seats available when I board at Van Dorn at around 7:00 am each weekday morning. The new eight-car trains are the most crowded, as the trains are timed to arrive farther apart when the eight-car trains are running.

The proposed new seating arrangements will only make the ride less comfortable for most riders. How about this alternative: post signs in the cars saying that anyone found crowding the doors when there is space available toward the center of the car will be invited to leave the train by Metro officials and police. Enforcement of the rules is the way to go- not removing already scarce seating.

Posted by: J. Bloom | February 7, 2007 8:52 AM | Report abuse

"It looks as though more standing commutes are in store for me and my neighbors."

Poor baby. There are worse things in the world, you know.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 7, 2007 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Poor baby. There are worse things in the world, you know.
_____________________________________
I never said that standing is the worst thing in the world, did I? Why are you misleading people about what I said?

In fact, it is very difficult for many of us to stand all the way in to D.C. from the near the end of the line-- many of us have medical conditions that make that difficult-- so, pardon us for having these physical problems, perfect one, but we are not to blame for being sick, old and/or partially disabled, in most cases.

Posted by: J. Bloom | February 7, 2007 9:03 AM | Report abuse

I applaud this new car they'll be testing on the green line!!! I'm 5'4" and I rode one of the new cars last year and had no choice but to bump up against my fellow short riders that had nothing to hold onto.

This open floor design with seats against the walls and overhead handles has worked for NYC for decades; why does Metro feel the need to "test" such a car.

Sorry, J. Bloom, but I have to agree that there are worse things than having to stand for your commute. It's not comfortable, but a mass transit system like Metro cannot currently function like a commuter train (VRE, MARC) and keep up with ridership. To make more room, some seats have to go.

Posted by: Petite rider | February 7, 2007 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Petite Rider: as I said before, you have misread my original post. Nowhere did I say it is the "worst thing" to stand on my commute. However, it is very difficult for many of us, and will eventually be impossible. Excuse us for being sick and old.

What am I to do then, walk to work? We have no choice other than the Metro trains. Eventually, I will have to sit down in the aisles and be trampled as people get on and off.

Moreover, you cannot say truthfully that, to make room, "some seats have to go," unless you have shown that there are no other alternatives for carrying more passengers.

Nobody has demonstrated, for example, that the money could not be found for adding cars to each train. How about saving the money currently spent on many of the orange-vested personnel that stand around talking to each other rather than looking for trouble or passengers in need of assistance or direction. We keep hearing that Metro has no money for adding capacity in any way other than removing seats, but where is the evidence for that conclusion? The public has never seen it.

Posted by: J. Bloom | February 7, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse

There needs to be a poll from the ceiling to the middle chair (the one that has the double-sided bench). As it is now, there's a huge gap in the middle of each row, because people grab onto the poll from the ceiling to the second-to-first chair, and refuse to move in.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 7, 2007 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I've never had trouble getting out of crowded car, even during rush. Generally, the regulars on the Orange line are very respectful of the unwritten rules and exit briefly to let others out. Indeed, it's common to see us step out just in case someone is trying to make their way out. The drivers understand this and usually wait at the platform to allow this practice.

When everyone is keyed in and respectful, it operates smoothly, even if its crowded. The problems are caused by the few inconsiderate and selfish individuals who need to lean against walls and poles, read their papers, and live in their own little world.

Posted by: Dave | February 7, 2007 9:35 AM | Report abuse

My major problem, having ridden on the bench seat tester train, is that the bench seat does not actually seat 5 people as it shows. Maybe 5 women, or 5 children but I am a fairly thin girl and I had to squeeze in, luckily between two very nice gentlemen, and we still didn't have room for the 5th person, plus I was sort of squashed between seat cushions which was very uncomfortable. Needless to say, I moved as soon as I could to a traditional seat. I think if we do adopt the bench we'll have to lose the cushions and just have a NY style bench. The other problem is the standing room, no one moved in any further from the doors and we just saw people falling all over each other. The bench seat actually took away the old aisle handhold from the back of the seats and it was chaos. I hope the spring loaded handles work but, based on my trip- I think I'd rather remain a sardine standing on a traditional car.

Posted by: commuting girl | February 7, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I would like to see them lose the orange seats that clash with the current color configuration. We don't need a color "memorial" for the guy who first picked the colors. If we are to continue with improving Metro, get rid of those seats.

Posted by: dancermommd | February 7, 2007 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Whatever their internal configuration is, I hope the new cars work better on snowy days than the cars we have now. This morning it a series of broken down trains ahewad of me on the Orange line. From announcements I could hear while we sat at various stations on the way in from Vienna, it sounded like the Red and Blue line had lots of problems, too. C'mon...it was only two inches of snow!

Posted by: Delayed | February 7, 2007 9:45 AM | Report abuse

In response to the first commenter, it sounds like the cars still have the rail down the center of the ceiling and it's only people under a certain height who will have difficulties standing right by the door.

Posted by: Drew | February 7, 2007 9:48 AM | Report abuse

"It looks as though more standing commutes are in store for me and my neighbors."

I don't believe I'm reading this. Then again, I do. Comments like this are exactly why I say too many Metro riders have a sense of entitlement. Especially those in the overpriced close-in suburbs.

You want Metro rail EVERYWHERE, at practically no cost, NO new roads EVER (why build roads when you can spend all available money on rail?), AND a gauranteed seat! All I can say to that is "Wow!".

Now I realize some people have conditions that make standing for long periods uncomfortable or even impossible, but where is it written that everyone who boards a Metro train is entitled to a seat?

It's called "mass transit. Metro may have started out as part commuter rail, but it's not anymore.

What's next? Dining cars and lounges for those who get on at the end of the line and can't stay hungry or do without a drink for "long periods of time"? Sheeesh!

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 10:03 AM | Report abuse

J. Bloom, I think your point is valid specifically with regard to the Blue line. That line currently seems to be underserved--I often note 4-car trains on the Blue line when I'm waiting for the Orange line. Adding more cars to the train would likely better serve Blue line riders.

Elsewhere in the system, however, there are some practical limitations to adding more cars. As I understand it, the 8-car train is about the maximum that some stations can accomodate. And running more trains (i.e., cutting down on the time between trains) apparently causes some safety risks.

I'm lucky enough to see some 8-car trains on my morning Orange line commute but the reality is that at my stop (the third from the beginning of the line) many/most of the seats are already full. Thus, the only way to accomodate more riders is to make more people stand.

Posted by: TC | February 7, 2007 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Its just the train! Why complain if we are still going to use it daily. Even if they take away all the chairs what are you going to do? STAND UP!! We should complain when there is no metro. What are we gonna go then? No one can ever be happy with the metro services, so just shut up and get where you gotta go or drive and brave the traffic.

Posted by: simple | February 7, 2007 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Wait a minute! Why ride the train if you have to stand all the way from Shady Grove?

The ability to sit down and read something or do your organizer, as opposed to being occupied driving, is a reason people CHOOSE metro for those longer rides. If you have to stand then you lose that. Taking metro on those longer routes is a choice. By the time you drive to a station, park (pay), wait for a train (paying again) you could have driven.

I think the trains with fewer seats should be organized so they run on the shorter routes, The Grovesnor/Silver Spring run for example.

Posted by: RoseG | February 7, 2007 10:16 AM | Report abuse


CEEAF wrote:

" You want Metro rail EVERYWHERE, at practically no cost, NO new roads EVER (why build roads when you can spend all available money on rail?), AND a gauranteed seat! All I can say to that is "Wow!". "

Reminds me of the folks who insist on driving their cars and will never ride Metro, who want roads EVERYWHERE, at practically no cost, NO new rail EVER (why build rail when you can spend all available money on roads?), AND a gauranteed traffic-jam-free commute to work! All I can say to that is "Wow!"


Posted by: Dan | February 7, 2007 10:16 AM | Report abuse

If you're sufficiently disabled that you need a seat, then you should ask someone more able bodied to move. I suspect most riders would be willing to move if asked. Also, if you're getting on at the end of the line, there's a much better chance of a seat; and by teh end of the line ,many of the seats are vacated.

But I don't see how leaving the seats solves the problem. No matter what, the trains are going to be packed. less space just means more waiting for the next train, which also won't have seats.

I think it's great that Metro is looking at ways to increase capacity of their cars and make them better for people standing. That said, I hope they'll consider a way of leaving some cars on each train with the "more seats" configuation--perhaps the two cars at either end, or maybe teh four cars at either end, with teh middle two cars having more standing room.

Posted by: ah | February 7, 2007 10:19 AM | Report abuse

"Reminds me of the folks who insist on driving their cars and will never ride Metro, who want roads EVERYWHERE, at practically no cost, NO new rail EVER (why build rail when you can spend all available money on roads?), AND a gauranteed traffic-jam-free commute to work! All I can say to that is "Wow!""

I can't speak for everyone, but don't "want roads EVERYWHERE" and I use Metro when it makes sense which is quite often. I'm just not narrow-minded or stupid enough to think Metro makes roads unnecessary as many, possibly including you, obviously are.

Your statement "NO new rail EVER (why build rail when you can spend all available money on roads?)" clearly shows your ignorance about the history transportation policy in the metro DC region.

30 years of building the nation's second-largest and most expensive subway system while simultaneously canceling more lane-miles of highway than were built - more than any other major US city - can HARDLY be described as a policy of "NO new rail EVER (why build rail when you can spend all available money on roads?)".

As for "roads EVERYWHERE,", refer to wwww.highwaysandcommunities.com and learn about how highways in the DC region were killed in favor of Metro rail.

As for roads "at practically no cost", borrow a 13-year-old's 8th grade civics books and read about how roads are financed.

Meanwhile, keep posting. Show us what ELSE you don't know.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 10:35 AM | Report abuse

I'm glad to see that metro is rethinking the pole-less design at the ends of the car. I think simply adding seat to celing poles on the seats and leaving the end-car poles where they are would help. Every morning my train cars are completely full and people move the the center of the train, and the ends of the car are still stuffed. If decides on the first design, they are going to have to add more cars to the trains during rush hour.

Posted by: alexandria, va | February 7, 2007 10:38 AM | Report abuse

CEEAF wrote:
""It looks as though more standing commutes are in store for me and my neighbors."

I don't believe I'm reading this. Then again, I do. Comments like this are exactly why I say too many Metro riders have a sense of entitlement. Especially those in the overpriced close-in suburbs."
___________________________________________

I never said I am entitled to a seat. Again, do not misrepresent what I said. I don't believe you are suggesting that it is an option for me to live far enough away that the housing options are cheaper-- as if that is relevant to these issues! If I far enough away from D.C. and my job to have less-expensive housing, I would be way beyond the bus-metro lines. And suggesting that I drive to work is ridiculous! You can't be serious! I can't afford to pay for parking in D.C. all day. It must be nice to be rich!

Posted by: J. Bloom | February 7, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Why are they sticking with the poo-brown color scheme? Horrid.

Posted by: Mike | February 7, 2007 10:48 AM | Report abuse

"Dan",

You just proved that most road-opponents/transit advocates don't know what the heck they're talking about.

Another one sliced, seasoned, skewered and grilled.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 10:48 AM | Report abuse

I think its great that they are looking into Bench Seats. But they also need to make sure they have those spring loaded handles.

I think that more people might end up taking metro and it would become more efficient as more people might be able to fit in each car. This would in turn possibly help with their finances.

All I ever hear is the Metro is losing so much money- I think one other way they could fix this is to get rid of the carpeting and put in rubberized or textured metal floors. Also, get rid of the vinyl seat cushions. They all may look nice, but they require more maintenance and cleaning than simple metal seating and flooring, dare I say it, like NYC. All you would need is a power hose or broom. Lack of Carpet would also help rid the cars of the musty smell, especially following rain or snow and would look cleaner with the lack of dark stains on them.

They also need to get rid of those tiny arm rests. First of all, they are useless. But more importantly, they cause more inconvenience than comfort. It limits the space in the seat, and people can't simply swing out their legs to let the inside seat out, instead they have to stand up, many times into the already crowded aisle.

Posted by: TJG | February 7, 2007 10:49 AM | Report abuse

I ride the Red line from Shady Grove to Dupont and back everyday. I agree that the trains need to be fixed. My commute is 38 minutes standing on the train. A train that speeds up and then breaks hard before almost all stops because there is a train in front of us. I am 34 and can barely keep a grip on the pole so that I am not thrown about the train. I have actually seen older people, even of good health, being thrown from the pole onto the floor! Because all trains do not go to Shady grove, the Grovner Strathmore train is barely half full when the Shady Grove train is packed to capacity. Then the packed Shady Grove train has got to pick-up even more people at Stratmore. Wake-up METRO and look at the bad decisions you already are making. If all Red line trains went to the Shady Grove station, then the crowd of people could disperse among more cars. But, if the past is any vision of what Metro will do in the future, we are in for more of the same old bad decisions.

Posted by: shady grove rider | February 7, 2007 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Someone mentioned delays this morning. Today's Orange/Blue Line delays did not all appear to be due the snow. A woman was bumped by a train at Rosslyn. See

"Woman Struck by Metro Train in Rosslyn
Morning Delays Reported on Orange, Blue Lines"

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/07/AR2007020700456.html

Posted by: Longtime Metro Rider | February 7, 2007 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I hope the pull down handles work. The other test car with the bench seats and no pull down handles is terrible. I'm 5'2 and I can barely reach the overhead bar. Definetly can't get a good enough grip to old on properly. I fear a torn rotator cuff. I also say don't take away seats on all cars. Maybe have the center car with few seats to help with downtown crowding. This car could have handles below the windows, I think I have seen this on an airport subway, maybe Atlanta or Detroit, not sure. I ride from Metro Center to Shady Grove and already pay way more for half as much service since half of the trains stop at Grovensnor. I would have to think of giving up on Metro If I can't have a seat to read, can't read standing up because of trying to hold on.

Posted by: Shrimp | February 7, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I think these new rail cars look great. I am thrilled that Metro is finally getting serious about taking a look at ways to maximize the use of space on their rail cars. Some different seating configurations are LONG overdue! It would seem to me that the spring loaded handles are key to making this work.

I would love to see these cars tested on some of the other lines as well.

Posted by: JH | February 7, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse

"I never said I am entitled to a seat."

Complaining about not finding one at 7AM, as if you got there early to be able to, certainly comes off as entitled.

"Again, do not misrepresent what I said."

Again? This is the first reponse I've made to your comments. Why so hypersensitive? I'm not putting words in your mouth; I'm merely repeating what you said.

"I don't believe you are suggesting that it is an option for me to live far enough away that the housing options are cheaper-- as if that is relevant to these issues!"

No, I'm not, so don't put words in MY mouth.

"If I far enough away from D.C. and my job to have less-expensive housing, I would be way beyond the bus-metro lines."

Aw, poor baby!

"And suggesting that I drive to work is ridiculous! You can't be serious!"

Many do. We're not talking about the Loop or Midtown Manhattan here.

"I can't afford to pay for parking in D.C. n all day."

Sorry, but that's not my problem. And I never suggested it.

"It must be nice to be rich!"

"as if that is relevant to these issues!"

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

This open floor design with seats against the walls and overhead handles has worked for NYC for decades; why does Metro feel the need to "test" such a car.
--
Hah, I agree. It obviously works in other cities & no one starts raging fights over testing out new cars there. Do you know how long of a ride it must be from Brooklyn to Midtown? Suck it up DC...

Posted by: metrobus is worse | February 7, 2007 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Not to put too fine a point on it, but part of the current problem of crowding has to do with the growing number of riders of larger than average girth who, by themselves, occupy two seats or at least make the neighboring seat uninhabitable without leaning into the aisle. The redesign, with bench seating and grab bars from the ceiling, will not make people smaller and healthier, but it at least reduce the congestion caused by oversided seated and standing passengers because of the wider aisle and standing spaces.

Posted by: Largo | February 7, 2007 11:40 AM | Report abuse

""If I far enough away from D.C. and my job to have less-expensive housing, I would be way beyond the bus-metro lines."

You mean like the 70% of people in this region who (1) can't afford to live close-in, (2) can't commute by Metro, (3) get flamed because they "will never ride Metro", (4) are called "selfish" and "socially irtresponsible" for living in "sprawl" and (5) can't get the roads they need, thanks to the region's obsession with Metro?

Look, I'm not suggesting you do anything other than STOP WHINING.

I've been on every subway system in the US and Canada and on several overseas systems. When it comes to comfort, Metro beats them all, hands down.

After you've experienced the hard plastic and metal seats in New York, the freezing cold stations in Chicago, the crowds in Tokyo, or the the non-air conditioned cars in London, maybe, just perhaps, someone might have some sympathy for your having to "stand until the end of the line".

Meanwhile, those of us who rot in traffic while paying for your train ride frankly don't give a damn.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse

The NYC subway system is well-run and a model for comparable cities.

DC is not a comparable city.

There is greater sprawl, meaning more of its riders come from the edges of the city inward. It's possible to spend your entire ride unable to get a seat. There's greater turnover at the stops in NYC, so it's highly unlikely you won't be able to get a seat if you want one. FYI: many of us would be more than willing to stand the entire ride if it was possible to do so without being pitched back and forth.

NYC is also a much denser network and you could ride an entirely different subway line and still get where you want to go. It also has an extensive bus system.

NYC is a city designed for excellent public transportation. DC public transportation just isn't structured like that. It has buses that run only every hour!

Until DC (and it's Virginia and Maryland commuters) get serious about funding and planning to encourage public transportation, it's just going to keep getting worse. And it's not just the fault of Metro.

Posted by: mizbinkley | February 7, 2007 12:20 PM | Report abuse

" 30 years of building the nation's second-largest and most expensive subway system while simultaneously canceling more lane-miles of highway than were built - more than any other major US city - can HARDLY be described as a policy of "NO new rail EVER " "

The phrase "NO new rail EVER" does not decribe the policy that was actually followed (thank God). It describes the attitude of some of the anti-rail every-trip-one-person-one-car drivers that populate discussions such as these.

Posted by: Dan | February 7, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I completely agree with TJG*s comment about the tiny armrests. They are indeed absolutely useless. First of all, they are entirely too small and shallow to actually rest your. Secondly, they confine you to your seat and prevent you from being able to turn into the aisle so that the person seated at the window can exit quickly. Lastly, on several occasions, they have snagged my coat or pant pocket when getting out of the seat. Useless.

Posted by: chrisinwdc | February 7, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Someone once wrote: "Believe it not, there are people in our region who think Metro makes roads unnecessary."

I call b.s. Show us someone who has said or written "roads are unnecessary".

This is a classic strawman argument technique.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man

Posted by: Dan | February 7, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse

It's being tested on the Green line "traveling from Huntington up to Greenbelt"? Is Huntington on the Green Line now? Sweet!

Posted by: bearclaw | February 7, 2007 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Thank god. I can't believe it took them this long to put in pull-down hand grips. They should put the poles back (note: NOT THE WINDSCREENS OR SEATS) around the door entrances though. Reaching out for a grip is still easier than reaching up.

Posted by: Erika Froh | February 7, 2007 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I'm tall enough to reach the ceiling, but I have a bad shoulder, so I really prefer the poles. And like a lot of Washingtonians, I carry a briefcase and often a lunchbag and a newspaper, magazine or book. Its nice to be able to stabilize myself by wrapping an arm around a poll instead of dedicating a hand to keeping myself in place.

They should put more poles from the seats to the ceiling, as suggested by many others.

Posted by: Falls Church | February 7, 2007 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I have free parking in my building downtown, so really, its cheaper and more convenient for me to drive. But since I like to try and be "Green" I do take the Metro. I live far enough out to get a seat and I read the paper or a magazine on the way to work or actually do some work.

I figure the nice seat and uninteruppted reading time is worth the extra $4.30 a day I am paying to take this trip. (Yes, I realize that I am saving on gas, oil, wear and tear on my car by not driving).

But if I have to stand for the trip to and from, I'll be back in my car listening to NPR real quick.

Posted by: Foggy Bottom | February 7, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

My idea has been that the trains should be mixed with bench seats on one side with the doubles on another. Or, have a train with a mix of full "subway"-style cars (all bench seats, lots of standing room) and the traditional more commuter-rail type of cars for the longer commutes. An 8-car train could have 2 commuting cars on each end, 4 subway cars in the middle. It would be an easy system to learn and nice for those that live close-in and only need it for a stop or two and still have seating available to those that need it.

Recently, after more ridiculous delays and other failures of the metro system I have been convinced that the entire system is lost and we should strip out the entire thing and just add underground roads. Sure they will be backed up for miles with the hundreds of cars traveling on them, but it just couldn't be less efficient than this atrocious system that was built.

Also, to the first poster who mentioned long commutes while standing the whole way and only after someone replies did you state that you were elderly and disabled, don't be ridiculous. Of course people with disabilities or the elderly should be allowed to sit, the entire train car can't possibly be filled with geriatric individuals! Then again, I've so rarely seen anyone give up a seat in DC that maybe you're right, you'll be forced to stand.

Posted by: PMB | February 7, 2007 3:41 PM | Report abuse

"And like a lot of Washingtonians, I carry a briefcase and often a lunchbag and a newspaper, magazine or book. Its nice to be able to stabilize myself by wrapping an arm around a poll [sic] instead of dedicating a hand to keeping myself in place."

Please put your briefcase on the floor and dedicate your hand to stabilization. Wrapping your arm around the pole takes that handhold away from many other passengers who can't reach the overhead bar. Please be considerate and share the pole.

Posted by: Paze | February 7, 2007 3:55 PM | Report abuse

"Its nice to be able to stabilize myself by wrapping an arm around a poll instead of dedicating a hand to keeping myself in place."

God, would everyone just stop "multi-tasking" for a few minutes while riding the train? If you are too involved with playing with your ipod, blackberry, cell phone game and novel all at the same time to hold on, then you deserve to fall. Just shut up and hold on!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 7, 2007 3:59 PM | Report abuse

DC could learn a lot from SF's BART.

Posted by: ExSFO | February 7, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

This mornings commute from West Falls church to Metro Center involved THREE total evacuations of the train at THREE separate stations. One evacuation was caused by excessive smoke inside the train! The entire trip took about 1 1/4 hours! The third time we heard "this train is out of service" we thought the driver was joking!

Forget about rehabing the stations -- fix the damn trains so the work.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 7, 2007 4:22 PM | Report abuse

If people were just nicer to each other, many of these modifications would be unnecessary.

Posted by: JB | February 7, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

We could learn from BART? Uh, as in, what not to do? BART is only used to get suburban commuters into the city and at rush hour only comes every 10-15 minutes; if you're trying to get around within SF, BART is useless.

Posted by: BART | February 7, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse

"This is a classic strawman argument technique.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man"

Glad you learned a new word; too bad you don't know its meaning. How anyone can call the agrument that many think Metro makes roads unnecessary a "strwman" is beyond comprehension, unless that person is ignorant of the region's history, or happens to be just plain dumb.

Humor us and post another display of your ignorance, PLEASE.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 5:12 PM | Report abuse

"Someone once wrote: "Believe it not, there are people in our region who think Metro makes roads unnecessary."
I call b.s. Show us someone who has said or written "roads are unnecessary".
This is a classic strawman argument technique.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man
___________________________________________
Yo, Dan,

You're doing one heck of a job showing us how much you don't know, ESPECIALLY when you try the "intellectually superior" angle.

So far, you're batting 1.000. Keep up the good work. I can't wait to see what you try next.

Posted by: CEEAF to Dan | February 7, 2007 5:24 PM | Report abuse

It's not unreasonable to want the option of a seat on your commute. When I take the Metro, my commute is 1 or 2 stops, so I often prefer to stand, but when I'm going further, I often want to sit. When you're carrying a briefcase, bags, etc., for work, it's often very uncomfortable to try to balance that all AND hang on for dear life in a jam-packed car as the train starts and stops and lurches.

And I'm young and able-bodied and tall enough to reach ceiling poles.

I'm just saying it's not about feeling smugly entitled or whatever. Part of the attraction of commuting by Metro is (SUPPOSED to be) that it is comfortable as well as efficient and convenient. At least that was what I always thought.

Posted by: PQ | February 7, 2007 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Handles! More handles! Please! I use these on the bus (they are on Ride-on at least) and they are a life-saver. Handles will work great, particularly when people are entirely leaning against the vertical poles, not enabling those nearby to grab on. Seems like such an easy thing to help people stand.

Can't wait to see them on the red line!

Posted by: Takoma park | February 7, 2007 5:58 PM | Report abuse

I hope the seats near the doors will be removed from the whole fleet. Possibly, someone who can't stand standing will quit riding; but these defectors will be outnumbered by the new riders for whom there is currently no room at all.

Posted by: amturnip | February 7, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

"It describes the attitude of some of the anti-rail every-trip-one-person-one-car drivers that populate discussions such as these."

If you honestly can say you got that from my comments, then:

1. Your reading comprehension skilss are that of a moron.
2. You're smoking some powerful chronic.

The fact you have a problem with what you refer to as "anti-rail every-trip-one-person-one-car drivers" shows you've got some serious control issues. People like you oppose every new road and advocate the every-transportation-dolloar-must-go-rail policy because you WANT congestion to get worse and force everyone onto transit. You talk just like the silly enviro-wackos who don't even believe the garbage they've gotten gullible people like yourself to buy into.

Last time I checked, people had the right to choose their lifesytle. I'm not going to let some clown who couldn't get a prom date or make the basketball team tell me I must ride a train everywhere to fit HIS idea of a model citizen.

But keep posting. I like a good laugh. And I'll continue to "populate discussions such as these" to show people like yourself who ALSO "populate discussions such as these" up as the uninformed, agenda-based phonies that you are. Besides, I don't want the lurkers to get sucked in by your nonsense.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 7, 2007 7:42 PM | Report abuse

"I'm not going to let some clown who couldn't get a prom date or make the basketball team tell me I must ride a train everywhere to fit HIS idea of a model citizen."

CEAFF is just a dumb jock whose opinions don't matter. He sure sounds like he must've had a lot of coaches who did a lot of yelling but very little coaching.

Posted by: Baltimore | February 7, 2007 9:18 PM | Report abuse

It's pretty funny that people on here are talking about being nicer to each other, and yet it seems like all some other people want to do is start arguments. Who cares? Attack the opinions, not the people holding them.

That said, here are my opinions:

* pull-down handles -- I'm 5'3" and I can reach the ceiling bar (anybody over 5'5" who can't should do some morning calisthenics), but it's uncomfortable. Pull-downs would be great for me. I know shorties like myself will use them, but I'd like to see if pull-down handles will encourage normal-sized/taller people to hold something other than the floor-to-ceiling poles.

* bench seating should not have defined seats if at all possible -- this solves the problem of wider people getting enough space, and skinny people/kids taking up less space.

* Definitely take off your large handbag, tote, messenger bag, backpack, or briefcase while you're riding on a crowded car, or at least move it so it doesn't make you stick out more than an extra inch or two. I put my messenger bag at my feet almost every day, right where I can see it and nobody can mess with it, so I won't create extra unusable space. I've seen people wearing backpacks that stick out over a foot and smack people in the face who are sitting down. Totally unconsiderate. Why aren't people more thoughtful?

* I still contend that the best move Metro could make would be to make new cars with four sets of doors. More sets of doors, more places for people to get on and off; less trepidation about having to move far into the middle of the car (especially if you're just going a few stops). But since a lot of Metro's problems seem to involve door malfunctions, maybe this wouldn't be feasible after all.

* This is probably too anal of me, but the past few days, I've found myself thinking there should be a posted capacity number in each car and a diagram of most efficient use of space. For instance, don't stand by yourself in an aisle! Two people can fit next to each other in the aisles, for pete's sake, unless you weigh 300 lbs.

Posted by: KateR | February 8, 2007 10:00 AM | Report abuse

CEAFF you may have a right to choose your lifestyle but others have a right to complain about it too. If you truly prefer to take trips by yourself in your car, one a time, then you are polluting and hurting the environment (and therefore your fellow citizens through any number of different ways) and those who you are hurting have a right to work to stop you from doing so. Similarly, you can choose to lead the lifestyle of a criminal - but the police and other citizens will work to stop you from living your life.

Posted by: Nick | February 8, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Hey CEEAF,

Enough of the namecalling.

How about you show us a quote in a news website where someone actually said something to the effect of "roads are no longer needed now that we have Metro rail."

If you can't, then your "argument" (that lots of pro-Metro folks think we no longer need roads) indeed sounds very much like a strawman.

Posted by: Curtis | February 8, 2007 11:32 AM | Report abuse

CEEAF,

Thanks for always using the same name on all your posts. That way, I can easily tell which posts to ignore when I don't feel like reading something by a complete ignoramus. Seriously, your posts are nothing but attacks on others. Why not just post your opinion and leave it at that. That's what others (whose posts really say something) tend to do.


Posted by: the anti-CEEAF | February 8, 2007 11:40 AM | Report abuse

"People like you oppose every new road and advocate the every-transportation-dolloar-must-go-rail policy because you WANT congestion to get worse and force everyone onto transit."

Ha! That's right! And after I force you to take transit, but not paving the entire metro area for your SUV (stupid user vehicle), then I'm going to take your guns! And then guess what? I'll annul your marriage to your half-sister and make you marry someone of another race or ethnicity! (That's "social engineering", just like building rail transit!) And watch out, you CEEAF, you! If you really get me riled up, I'll make you take a typing course! (From the look of your posts you need it; must be the self-control issues you have to deal with.)

Posted by: Dan | February 8, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse

To those complaining about the Redline trains that terminate at Grosvenor, the whole point of these trains is to ease congested in the downtown (inner areas of the city). It's a way of running more trains without having an additional cost of going to the ends of the line. Now, I agree that trains going to Shady Grove are packed all the way to the end of the line, but this is not because of the trains which terminate at Grosvenor. It's due to the an increase in the number of people living farther out (Gaithersburg, Germantown, Derwood, Fredrick, and up 270) and taking metro in. When they orginially started running trains from Silver Spring to Grosvenor, the ridership on the ends of the lines was lower.

Honestly a better solution to this would be to run some trains from the end of the lines to just past the center of the city (Shady Grove to NY Ave and Glenmont to Van Ness for example). And then still have the usual amount of trains that run the entire route.

Oh and to those complaining about being on that crowded redline train and having to stand on a train that starts and stops so much, if they added more train service to Shady Grove, the trains would just back up more. FYI.

Posted by: Laura | February 8, 2007 1:39 PM | Report abuse

You are all wrong. Metro is no better than cars because you still get fat sitting in a seat or standing still. People need to ride bikes to work and drivers need to get out of the way.

Posted by: BIKE_OR_DIE | February 8, 2007 5:39 PM | Report abuse

"That way, I can easily tell which posts to ignore when I don't feel like reading something by a complete ignoramus. Seriously, your posts are nothing but attacks on others. Why not just post your opinion and leave it at that. That's what others (whose posts really say something) tend to do."

I never attack anyone unless they attack first. After that, I take no prisoners. If they can't take it, they shouldn't dish it out.

I don't need you to tell me how to post. However, you CAN ignore what I post, so grow up, ignore it, and stop whining like some she-dog.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 8, 2007 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Danny Boy,

Up to now, your posts have consisted of:

1. Misstatements of facts that glaringly show you know absolutely nothing about the region's history of transportation planning and policy.

2. Weak, limp efforts to insult with pseudo-intellectual claptrap direct from a sophomoric do-it-yourself web-based "encyclopedia".

3. Silly anti-car slogans cut and pasted from some enviro-weenie fringe group's agenda-based website.

4. Phony, anti-car, anti suburb NONSENSE from snot-nose who is quite likely the child of people who ran to the suburbs to get away from people who didn't look them.

Now you want to imply that I, a successful Black Man, am what you're just a generation or two away from: PWT.

You're obviously immature and inexperienced. Youthful idealism is one thing. Pompous arrogance is something else altogether.

AS I said earlier, you make yourself look more foolish every time you post. At first, it was funny, now it's sad.

You come off like some college sophomore who thinks he's smarter than everyone else because his divorced parents have always told him so. I'll bet you believe that girl who's given it up to everybody on campus that you're the best she's ever had. Right, smart guy?

You're obviously pleased with yourself for living carless in the city and riding transit while you cringe and look over your shoulder anytime you see a face darker than yours. Guess what. People don't have to live as you do. In fact, most choose not to. Grow up and deal with it.

Look. Get your jollies with someone at you own level and come back when you've grown up, got a job, and paid some taxes. For now, you're dismissed. Have a happy landing.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 8, 2007 10:59 PM | Report abuse

"Ha! That's right! And after I force you to take transit, but not paving the entire metro area for your SUV (stupid user vehicle), "

You never have your facts straight, do you?
I don't drive a SUV. When you talk about what you don't know, you look like a fool.

"then I'm going to take your guns!"

I don't have a gun. I don't like them.

"And then guess what? I'll annul your marriage to your half-sister"

My half-sisters are both already married, thanks. But since you want to go down that path, perhaps I'll annul YOUR marriage to that guy you think is so cute.

"and make you marry someone of another race or ethnicity!(That's "social engineering", just like building rail transit!) "

You gonna introduce me to your sister or mom? Never mind, I outgrew white chicks years ago.

"And watch out, you CEEAF, you! If you really get me riled up, I'll make you take a typing course! (From the look of your posts you need it; must be the self-control issues you have to deal with.)"

Someone who brags about a desire for social engineering wants to talk about "self control issues"? Look, I'm not the one who needs to control the lives of others to feel like a man, baby boy. Consider therapy. I've heard they have drugs that can do wonders.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 8, 2007 11:16 PM | Report abuse

"You are all wrong. Metro is no better than cars because you still get fat sitting in a seat or standing still. People need to ride bikes to work and drivers need to get out of the way."

Nobody listened to this nonsense in 2001 (before you were banned from the Post Forums) and no one is listening now. YOU stay out of the way of the cars and you'll live longer.

Have a happy landing

Posted by: to BIKE_OR_DIE | February 9, 2007 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Curtis,
"How about you show us a quote in a news website where someone actually said something to the effect of "roads are no longer needed now that we have Metro rail."

Start with these:

www.highwaysandcommunities.com
www.roadstothefutre.com.

"If you can't, then your "argument" (that lots of pro-Metro folks think we no longer need roads) indeed sounds very much like a strawman."

I hope you take the time the read the links and learn something about the history of transportation planning and policy in this region, instead of calling me names, ridiculing my arguments, accusing me of setting up strawmen, then calling me a bully for retaliating as others on this blog have done. That's classic "shoot the messenger".

To be frank, they're a bunch of spoiled, snotty crybabies.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 8:15 AM | Report abuse

to Curtis,

Don't get me wrong. I'm NOT anti-Metro. I use it myself.

What I AM against is the mindset we must invest soley in Metro and never build roads. If your looking for "news links", do some research on the fast-tracking of Dulles rail and the "never say die" actions of the opponents to the Intercounty Connector (ICC).

This region spent 30 years canceling roads and expanding Metro, thanks to the efforts of people who believed (1) building Metro would eliminate the need for freeways, especially in the core, and (2) we were running out of oil and therefor wouldn't need roads (the links I provided do a good job of detailing and explaining that).

We're living with the results of that folly. We don't have the nation's 4th-worst traffic congestion because we haven't built enough rail.

Now, we have to listen to people who insist on doing more the same for silly reasons. Someone on this blog actually said something to the effect of "when you drive by yourself you hurt the environment". Duh! Cars stuck in traffic on an inadequate road network pollute NO MATTER how many are in the vehicle, IN SPITE OF the existance of rail transit. It's amazing that people who think they are so much smarter than the rest of us can't see that simple fact.

Moving forward, I'll welcome intelligent discourse and ignore the clowns who dish it out but can't take it.

They don't know anything and don't want to learn, so why bother?


Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Nick :

" If you truly prefer to take trips by yourself in your car, one a time, then you are polluting and hurting the environment (and therefore your fellow citizens through any number of different ways) and those who you are hurting have a right to work to stop you from doing so."

Duh! Cars stuck in traffic on an inadequate road network pollute NO MATTER how many are in the vehicle, IN SPITE OF the existance of rail transit.

It's amazing that people who think they are so much smarter than the rest of us can't see that simple fact.

Then again, I think they can. That's why I'm convinced that most environmentalists and transit advocates don't care one bit about the real causes and effects of traffic congestion and air pollution. Their only goal is to tell peole where they can live and force them to use transit.

That's why I call them phonies, that's why I call them hypocrites, and that's why I don't respect them.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 8:56 AM | Report abuse

I think ALL of you need to STFU for a bit.....come on, you're lowering yourselves to the level of the idiots on Capitol Hill and in the White House (and I don't exempt anyone from either party from that, since they all squabble like spoiled kids who are mad that Mommy poured more bug juice in someone else's glass). When the notorious BIKE_OR_DIE (whom I recall from the old Post message board) has the most rational statement in a while, it's sad.

The ORIGINAL purpose of the thread was to discuss the new Metro car. I think the metal strap is LONG overdue. Maybe someone who understands physics can explain why, but I've long noted that the seatback rails are useless and that it's much easier to maintain one's balance using an elevated pole or railing.

What's funny is that when Metrorail was built, its designers intentionally scorned anything that might be similar to New York's subway. I think they're finally realizing that, while New York has had its problems over the years, the fact that that system is some 70 years older than Metrorail means that the New Yorkers have had a lot of time to try different designs and to find what works.

Posted by: Rich | February 9, 2007 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Nick.

I suppose you're going to tell me I'm "polluting and hurting the environment (and therefore your fellow citizens through any number of different ways)" by living in a single-family house, turning on the TV, and flushing my toilet more than once a day and "you have the right to stop" me. Try it.

What do you thik YOU'RE doing when you burn the electricity to on your computer?

You guys are ridiculous!

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Rich,

You're right. And saying "he started it" is no excuse.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Four people in four cars polluting the air is four times greater the pollution than four people in one car. I keep forgetting that unless you went to school in Fairfax County, you didn't learn math. 2+2=4. If you take four single people who are each driving their own cars and put them all into one car, how many of those cars are on the road driving? ONE! Now take all of those people who are on Metro that could be clogging 66, the Beltway, 295, 395, 95, etc., and the commute would probably double.

Quit crying about having to stand on Metro, most people sit all day anyway, it's good for you. To the tall people, grab the bar on top (I do). To the shorter people, start pushing the taller people around, they'll learn. And to the people who decide to put their bags in the aisle or group of friends that like to clog up the trains by stretching their legs across the asile, STOP IT. Got on a red line train yesterday and went to stand in the aisle because I had a little bit of a ride ahead of me. Couldn't.

Whether it was the black athlete who stretched out, the person doing drugs on the train (not hard to spot the person snorting coke across from the athlete) who was facing the athlete. The mid 20's white woman with a suitcase that should have been checked (yes it was that big). The white business man who stood like an "X" while holding his briefcase above his (and other riders' heads) and the hearing impaired person who kept trying to get around Mr. X. This may sound racist, but this is what it was on this train.

Some systems put people on every car to make sure nobody is doing anything stupid, Metro had three people working Metro Center. Two guys to clean up (one must've been on break tailing the other one) and one employee facing the wall with his cell phone in hand talking to someone loudly "Yeah I'm a work. Would rather be at home but they're making me work." OH WAH, take your six figure salary and stuff it Metro.

Posted by: Simple Math | February 9, 2007 9:44 AM | Report abuse

"most people sit all day anyway, it's good for you."

Not so. I'm a woman who has worked white collar, professional jobs throughout my career. I once boarded a Metrobus on my way home at the end of the workday and was offered a seat by a Hispanic laborer. He clearly worked construction as he had a hard hat, wore workboots, etc. In my view, given the type of work he did all day, he needed to sit far more than I. I won't tell you all whether I accepted the seat or not.

Sometimes you can pick out on Metro who works that type of job. Other people may be sales clerks or wait staff or cashiers who stand behind a counter all day. Not everyone sits at a computer all day. Why do you assume "most people sit all day?" As for large bags, you're going to see that on Metro sometimes, plenty of people use it to get to the airport or to Union Station. There is no place to "check bags" on the subway.

As for short people pushing tall people out of the way, not everyone is aggressive or assertive by nature. Nor can riders always tell who needs a seat. My sister rode Metrorail to her medical appointments during the year after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Sometimes she had to stand. Although she knew she would die within a few months (yes, she's dead now) and often felt weak from radiation or chemo, you couldn't tell by looking at her that she was terminal. So she rarely received offers of seats on Metro when it was crowded. Yes, she tried to make her appointments for offpeak hours. But sometimes she had to travel during rush hour. But she never complained, never pushed people, never claimed any entitlements.

As you can imagine, having watched a loved one handle discomfort and oncoming death with enormous courage and grace, I am not a big fan of stereotypes. Or of overly prescriptive comments and snap judgments. People come with varying temperaments and characters, some accept discomfort better than others, some whine about the smallest things. People also have differing sensibilities: some have good hearts and show kindness and tolerance, others are heartless and cruel and rude and self centered. All I can say is, you're going to see all those qualities on display on Metro as in any other public space.

As for the overhead handles, I think they're a good idea. As Rich points out, holding on to the seat handles doesn't always work well.

Posted by: No cookie cutter stereotypes | February 9, 2007 11:13 AM | Report abuse

"AS I said earlier, you make yourself look more foolish every time you post. At first, it was funny, now it's sad.

You come off like some college sophomore who thinks he's smarter than everyone else because his divorced parents have always told him so. I'll bet you believe that girl who's given it up to everybody on campus that you're the best she's ever had. Right, smart guy?"

Wow, talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

Posted by: Hypocrites | February 9, 2007 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I have a comment about the new cars (rather then an addition to this moronic arguement going on above). While I do think that getting rid of the ceiling to floor bars in the new cars does create more space, I feel like it creates a lot of "dead" space because you lose where you can and cannot hold on anymore

With the floor to ceiling poles, people could hold on 360 degrees around it (baring some jerk who is leaning or hugging on the pole). With the new design, there are poles next to the doors and along the sides by the maps/ads inside the door. The problem with these is only 180 degrees of space to hold on around it. And for the poles by the door, in reality only about 135 degrees of space to hold without blocking the doors. I think these actually might promote standing near the door.

Now yes, there are the overhead bars and (hopefully) the ridgid handholds, but riders will still be limited by the distance they are standing away from these bars or handholds. I still think one ceiling to floor pole would be fine and still get people away from the doors. The open layout is a great idea to allow for more movement in and out of the cars, but not practical when a car is completely full with riders.

Posted by: Laura | February 9, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

"What's funny is that when Metrorail was built, its designers intentionally scorned anything that might be similar to New York's subway. I think they're finally realizing that, while New York has had its problems over the years, the fact that that system is some 70 years older than Metrorail means that the New Yorkers have had a lot of time to try different designs and to find what works."

I think the cars were configured the way they were because Metro designers initially wanted to attract suburban commuters. The routes in Montgomery, Arlington, and Fairfax counties were completed first, so Metro was for all practical purposes, a commuter rail system until the DC and Prince Georges County sections were completed in recent years.

Metro has been a victim of its own success. The suburban areas it serves are far more dense than they were in the 1970's and ridership has exceeded original projections.

They will eventually have to figure out how to accomodate the additional riders.

Posted by: ceeaf | February 9, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Wait a minute . . . someone was doing coke on the train? REALLY?

Two comments:
(a) I'm constantly amazed by the things people will do in public; and
(b) Wouldn't you end up with your coke blowing everywhere when the train lurches? Man, that would suck.

But to get back on topic, I have seen a few cars lately on the red line with the windshields and side-facing seats removed.

Posted by: Dupont | February 9, 2007 5:22 PM | Report abuse

"Wow, talk about the pot calling the kettle black."

I'm about as black as they get, baby boy. And I was a college sophomore a long time ago.

Anything else?

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 5:37 PM | Report abuse

"Wow, talk about the pot calling the kettle black."

I give as good as I get, friend.

Sorry if it bothers you, but I suffer smart-aleck know-it-alls very lightly.

That guy exibits classic college sophomore behavior - he thinks he knows everything because he's read a few books, gone to a couple rallys and lectures, and stayed awake in class. He knows nothing, knows not that he knows nothing, and is arrogant enough to think he'll change the world whether the world likes it or not. He's a joke.

I tried to educate him with facts and links and he responded with pseudo-intellectual nonsense, put-downs, sarcasm, and name-calling.

And you're chastising ME? I beg your pardon!

Posted by: CEEAF | February 9, 2007 5:52 PM | Report abuse

CEEAF,
Look dude, your posts are always the ones that call people morons and tell people to "look at the facts." They are looking at facts. And you are, too. The purpose of a forum like this is constructively debate ideas - not call other people stupid because they don't agree with you. I'm just confused how you "suffer smart-aleck know-it-alls very lightly" when that's exactly what you come off as when you say things like "That guy exibits classic college sophomore behavior - he thinks he knows everything because he's read a few books, gone to a couple rallys and lectures, and stayed awake in class. He knows nothing, knows not that he knows nothing, and is arrogant enough to think he'll change the world whether the world likes it or not. He's a joke." That's exactly what you sound like. My "pot calling the kettle black comment" simply meant that before you attack other people for not being open to other opinions maybe you should make sure that you don't suffer from the same disease.

Posted by: Hypocrites | February 10, 2007 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Hypocrites (the name's a good fit) -

Have you read Dan's messages to me? I wonder why you don't take Dan to task for what he's posted instead of spending all your energy lecturing ME. Are you and Dan one and the same? Probably so.

In any event, I'm done explaining myself to you - I owe you no explanation.

As for "Dan", or who ever he is, he's lucky were not doing this in person.

Posted by: CEEAF | February 10, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse

WOW! After reading all these posts and seeing all this seething hostility, I'm SO HAPPY I escaped the DC "rat race" and now reside on the ocean shore.

My commute was once a walk across the fairway on the golf course. It's a bit longer now, but all that tension and hostility and "better than you" attitude I accumulated during my 10 years in the Metro area have long since vanished.

Life is a lot better at the beach!

Don't got no Metro. Don't NEED no stinkin' Metro. YEEE WHOO!

Posted by: EZ at the Beach | February 13, 2007 5:51 PM | Report abuse

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