Friday, June 5, 2009

Smooth Operator

Is that song in your head already?
We recently heard the story of Metro operator Ms. Gibson who berated her passengers to the point they felt like bursting their own eardrums with chopsticks, but we want to be fair to Metro because there are good conductors out there who do a splendid job, not only performing competently, but actually making Metro just a touch more bearable.
Yesterday, on the Orange Line headed back to East Fall Church, we had the pleasure to be served by a conductor we'll call "Barry Orange" since we were not able to get his name.
His sonorous voice is soothing, and his intonations are just enough to make things a bit funny without him trying too hard to be a clown.
"The next station is Virrrginiaaa Squarrrrrre," "Dooooors...leftside" and "the last station in Washington, Dee Cee" were highlights of his repertoire.
His subtle injection of humor caused two passengers, apparently strangers, to look at each other and chuckle a bit. No eye rolling, and they weren't laughing at Metro! First time we've seen that.
But more importantly, his announcements were informative, consistent and clear. A tourist's dream.
Better yet, the ride was as smooth as his voice--not a jarring stop or start the whole way.
If only all Metro conductors were like this. Whoever you are, Barry Orange, you have a lot of fans out there.
Metro: This driver should be hired immediately to do ALL your announcements. The prim and proper Door Witch was quite jarring in comparison.

Other news:
Metro looking at ways to improve pedestrian and cycler access to stations (GGW)
Metro tries to improve bus stop information (PDF)

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Megan said...

Barry Orange also performs on the Red Line. Love him.

Tony said...

Second this. Ride the Red Line and am lucky enough to get him as a driver now and then.

Steven Schwark said...

I've had Barry Orange on the Blue Line as well. When I used to work near Farragut West I'd always get him in the mornings. What comes to mind is "Next stop...Pentagonnnnnnnn". Nowadays I take Yellow and sometimes he's driving the Blue train right before mine and I get to hear him through the external speakers with the Doplar Effect as he drives away. Try to image that, it's pretty cool.

Emily said...

I love this guy! He is my absolute fav. When I am awake he entertains while he informs. When I am asleep I'm not jarred awake with brash annoucements or jerky starts and stops.

His voice brings a smile to my face.

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