"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

(Another) New York Minute

It is dark, cold and wet in New York this morning. Nothing like the rain to make the morning commute an adventure. The bus was jammed packed and so was the train. At one point, the conductor on the IRT said, “Please, step all the way inside, you are blocking the closing doors.” A few seconds passed and then his voice came over the loudspeaker again, “You are still blocking the door.” He wasn’t happy. Another beat, then: “I’m looking right at you!”

That got a good chuckle out of the people near me. I was smiling too. At the next stop, the conductor said, “This is a crowded train, people, let’s work together.” He wasn’t upset anymore but encouraging. And when we arrived at 72nd street, a transfer station, he said, “Number 3 arriving across the plaform, number 3. Oh, and it’s as crowded as we are. You are better off staying put.”

I got off the train at my stop and went up to the conductor, who was peaking out of his window, and told him what a pro he was and how much I appreciated riding with him. He had big teeth and he smiled and then he was gone.

Categories:  Bronx Banter  New York Minute  NYC  Subway Stories

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1 Dimelo   ~  Mar 16, 2011 9:09 am

A witty conductor always makes a morning commute way easier.

2 ms october   ~  Mar 16, 2011 9:35 am

haha yeah the conductor can often really set the tone and the vibe for the train.

3 Diane Firstman   ~  Mar 16, 2011 10:32 am

I hate overly-informative conductors ... ones who believe that every moment between stations needs to be filled with their voice.

Fortunately the new R-160 trains have automated announcements, though even THOSE can get repetitive with their NYPD warnings and such.

4 Sliced Bread   ~  Mar 16, 2011 11:39 am

Conductors like this are the NYers who keep the city from imploding.Forgive the hyperbole but every second counts in New York, especially underground. This guy is a hero.

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