Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The Great Transit Strike of 2005

The Daily News headline says it all. Welcome to New York City, four days before Christmas, where an estimated 7 million people have been forced to walk up and down the largest city in the US in an effort to avoid traffic being caused by an additional 2 million cars trying to squeeze into a 17-mile island. Oh, and did I mention it's about 25 degrees outside? Thanks to this wretchedly horrible labor dispute between the Transit Workers Union (TWU) and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), 12 million people have to endure hardship on their way to work over greed. (Depending on who you ask, both sides of the strike are equally hated.)

Now, while I side with the TWU on this whole thing, I'm not going to turn this blog entry into a political rant or anything. Personally, the only thing I care about is that the strike is over. I can only hope that the TWU gets the money that they are rightfully owed after holding out for so long on getting real raises after 9/11, and that they are financially appreciated and respected for keeping the world's largest transit system running 24-hours a day. However, if they don't, womp, womp. At least they tried. I mean, it's not like I'm getting any money out of it, y'know?

Whatever the case may be, we need this transit system back up and running again. They messin' with my vacation!

So, here I am, back in NYC after making a mad dash escape from Syracuse for Christmas. I escaped blizzards, single-digit Arctic temperatures, and an empty refrigerator, only to come to this!! A crippled city!!! However, as a New Yorker, we have all learned to roll with the punches and take hardship in stride. With that said, one must look at the lighter side of this transit strike. Take for instance, this t-shirt, released and ready for sale even before the blisters on everyone's feet have healed after the 10-mile walks they had to endure to get to work:

Another great place for a laugh during your lunch break is Craigslist's personals section. Always an interesting read, today's personals have that oh-so wonderful "Transit Strike" theme: (links can be rather... adult in content...)

Hot girl needs a ride to work. Will finger my kitty while you drive - 24 (Ditmars Astoria)

Any cute Black guys walking over the Brooklyn Bridge tonight? - 27 (Wall Street)

Home, horney and high: Transit strike - m4w - 31 (Jersey City/ Hoboken Area)

Stuck in the heights due to the strike?

Let's trade rides. - m4w - 33 (my car)

Ride on this for free - 25 (south queens/li border/bk) pic

Seeking a Woman for Transit $trike Head - m4w - 26 (Wall Street)

good cocksuckers make good neighbors/ TRANSIT STRIKE SEX - 35 (west 20s near penn)

Strike is on, let's make a day of it - 27 (morgan off L)

And my personal favorite:

Transit strike: Give me head.. I'll drive you where you need to go - m - 29 (Kew Garden Hills)

So, hey, just because there's a train strike, it doesn't mean that at the very least, you won't be able to find someone to catch a "ride" from?

Yes...you gotta love NYC. :-)

Big shout-out to Gawker for covering the strike in "blogging" detail today.


Blogger Freebird said...

Wow, some of those personals are really out there. My favorites are the guy willing to exchange a BJ for a ride and the girl willing to put on a show. At least they're creative.

BTW, I'm on the strikers side too; I always root for the underdog.

12:09 AM  
Blogger GVock said...

I'm on the MTA's side for this one. It's hard to believe that the booth attendants, who probably have the most unskilled job in the city, are paid $51k a year. $12k higher than NYC teachers? This is definitely about greed, but on the union's side.

I like Ed Koch's idea: go after the union workers' bank accounts to repay the MTA for lost funds. They broke the law, they should pay the price.

10:12 AM  
Blogger djkibblesnbits said...

While I agree that teachers should be paid more money than what they make now, it isn't fair to compare the two occupations side-by-side. For one, teachers are only required to work 190 days a year. Compare that to the average 250 days that a transit employee works. Also, a teacher doesn't breathe in nearly half the carcinogens that the average transit worker breathes. Employees who qualify for their pension don't have a life expectancy greater than 66 as a result of the cancers that they are prone to develop after years of working for the MTA.

In this day and age, everyone assumes that just because you don't have a college degree, that you're "unskilled." After being in college for four years, I can honestly tell you that the only thing college did for me was improve my ability to bullshit others...

Kind of what the MTA is doing to the TWU and the City of New York right as we speak...

11:27 AM  
Blogger ~Krystyn~ said...

Eeks I checked out a couple of those Craigslist personals - pretty funny & creepy!

Stay warm!!

2:25 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

Dude, don't give out the secret abilities of college graduates! Now no one will think we're intellectuals.

While I support some union strikes, I don't think they should be unreasonable. We don't know much of the history out here so it sounds excessive; $51K to operate a toll booth? Of course I don't think I'd do it. It sounds incredibly boring. I do think they should outsource it to a private contractor. Public money could be better spent.

We had a strike out here, which I honored, for the grocery store chains. They spent about 4 months on the picket line just to accept what the chains were initially offering.

10:51 AM  
Blogger djkibblesnbits said...

LOL. I guess to people outside of NYC, 50 K sounds like a lot, but it's really chump change here, with everything being as expensive as it is. Believe it or not, other transportation systems pay more money across the board in the US, like in Chicago and in Washington D.C., and those systems aren't even open 24-hours!

Plus, it takes a special kind of person to deal with a New Yorker, lol. We're kinda...snotty... :-)

It makes me hate all those stupid masturbatory stories you find out here where reporters are constantly in "Only in New York" mode. "New Yorkers are STRONG people."

Yeah, whatever, lol. Like people out in Syracuse need the Red Cross to show up to give out hot chocolate to people who happen to walk around in, gasp, 30 degree weather. That's summertime for us!!!

And I officially just went on a Rant. Damn you, Robert, now I have Voices in My Head!!!

11:10 AM  
Blogger Robert said...

<Don't fight the feelin' man!>

12:38 PM  
Blogger Freebird said...

Hey, what is average rent for a 1 bedroom apt? Not moving or anything, just curious.

1:25 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

In San Diego, a 1 bedroom in my area is about $725. Downtown ranges anywhere from $1300 to $2000. But there's also this.

<StarTrekBimboVoice>What is this word "Win-Ter"? We have no such word here. </StarTrekBimboVoice>

11:46 PM  
Blogger djkibblesnbits said...

In NYC, the average 1-bedroom apartment is about $1200.

12:06 AM  
Blogger Freebird said...

Wow, those are both high, esp NY. I rent a 2 bedroom/2 bath w/fireplace/vaulted ceilings for $800.

2:32 PM  
Blogger Jose said...

i'm definitely feeling this post. definitely. and you're right about the teacher stuff. i don't know what more to say seeing as how everything has been covered, but good show, sir.

12:05 PM  

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