Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Commuting is a study in human nature.

Yesterday when I was heading out to a Labor Day BBQ with my family, I had meant to swing by the train station to buy a monthly commuter train ticket. I forgot and turned the wrong way. I asked my wife if I should go back, or do it later. I couldn’t decide and went back and forth few times in my mind and out loud. Exasperated, my wife said,
“Just go!”
“To the barbeque or the station?”
“Whatever you want to do.”
Wives are so helpful. I went to the station and bought the ticket. I didn’t want to put it off until later and then forget. I knew if I waited until Tuesday AM, there would be a line for the persnickety, slow-moving ticket machines, and there is no longer a human selling tickets at this station. Also, you should know, that New Jersey Transit charges a $5.00 penalty if you buy your ticket on the train when a ticket window or vending machine is available at the station you boarded at.

Predictably, those who did not have this discussion with their wives beforehand were lined up at the ticket machine minutes before the train was scheduled to arrive, and clearly not everyone was going to get a ticket. I had mine and I boarded. I didn’t see who it ended badly for. Hopefully they had just enough common sense to get hosed on the train rather than wait for the next one to save $5.00. Live and learn.

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