Dinette set

Sitting behind me on the LIRR, a clearly appalled girl in her 20s exclaims to her friend:

“She advertised it as a dining room set, but it’s a dinette set at best!”

Now, I get as infuriated by classified-ad exaggerations as the next guy, but judging by this girl’s obnoxiouly loud voice and completely-void-of-irony indignation, I’m guessing she doesn’t have enough friends to require the extra leaf and two chairs she’d been expecting.

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I was out late last night and found myself, as I often do, in Penn Station looking for a train home to the burb. When I looked up at the big board, I could swear I saw not one but two trains to Babylon listed, one after the other. Now, knowing that after a drink or three my reading ability might not have been at its peak, I did a double take, and then a triple take just to confirm that there was indeed a train leaving Penn Station for Babylon at 11:31 p.m., and another one right on its heels, at 11:34.

Perhaps I’m grossly underestimating the number of drunken Babylonians heading home from Manhattan late at night, but the trains to my town run only once an hour, and fares are constantly being raised and service cut. Babylon seems like an odd basket to place all one’s eggs.

By the way, my crappy camera phone makes it hard to tell, but that big board in the photo lists 7 trains. Three of them are bound for Babylon.

It’s not often you’ll find me quoting the bible, but a quick SweetSearch turns up this wish for the future:

“And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwellingplace for dragons, an astonishment, and an hissing, without an inhabitant.”

Sounds like the LIRR is gonna have a lot of trains to cancel.

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Just got this alert from the MTA:

“Due to an overhead catenary problem in one of Amtrak’s east River tunnels, LIRR customers are advised to anticipate possible delays up to 30 minutes on trains out of Penn Station during the evening rush hour as well as some canceled trains.  Customers should listen for announcements since there will be track changes during the evening rush hour.”

You had me at “overhead catenary problem.”

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