Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Not all Metro Employees are Bad

Via @MedivalMetro After my 15 min wait, I was greeted by the sight of this lazy bastard reading in his folding chair. #WMATA http://yfrog.com/kffs4oyj

I've spoken to a lot of Metro employees over the three-plus years of working this blog. A lot of them are good people who are embarrassed by how far Metro has sunk. A lot of them feel helpless to turn the tide. They're just as frustrated, if not more, than all of us.

Moreover, if you think it sucks to ride Metro twice a day, imagine working there--all day!

Some of the crazy, bureaucratic stuff I've heard from employees is simply mind boggling. I wish I had a green light to publish all I've seen and heard, but alas, these people need their jobs, and Metro will punish them for talking to the media.

Yes, the fundamental right to freedom of speech is basically bullied out of a lot of Metro employees by an insecure management that doesn't trust them or want to hear any of their ideas.

But a few are brave enough to come forward here, and I take my hat off to them.

Lately, however, there's been a tendency, on Twitter at least, for riders to take pictures of every Metro employee they see who's not actively turning a screw or hammering a nail, labeling them as "lazy bastards."

More troubling, however, is being openly hostile to a Metro employee actually doing their job. This is from a Metro employee:
I had someone start yelling about Metro sucks this and blows that when I was offloading a train. He was at the far end of the train and was raising hell, "I ain't getting off this train, f*ck Metro" and so forth. Well, as people were exiting the train, I started toward the screamer. He saw me coming and turned toward me and took a posture of "lets go!" He looked like he was ready to fight. I kept walking toward him, and as he saw I wasn't going to run away, he turned and got off the train. As the doors were closing, and he was a mere five feet away (I was inside the train he was outside.), he tells me "f*ck you asshole, I should kick your ass for making me get off this train."
Seriously, don't do this.

This guy is simply trying to do his job. It sucks to get offloaded, but it's not the employee's fault.

Yes, there are "lazy bastard" employees and outright a-holes who work for Metro--too many. We should continue to call the bad apples out. I'm happy to put them on this blog.

But a lot of the "lazy bastard" employees you see out there may be sitting idly because Metro management can't get their act together.

I've run into Metro workers who seem to be milling around, and every time, I've gone up and struck up a conversation. Inevitably, it's some sort of SNAFU with management or some kind of interdepartmental squabble (and here) that's holding them up from getting the job done.

Next time you see a Metro employee "lazing" about, strike up a friendly conversation, ask them what's going on. Chances are, they'll tell you something that's much more interesting than meets the eye about how Metro operates. When they do, let me know.

Other items:
Two-city transit perv busted (Patch)
Dulles rail board spends $1 million studying itself (Examiner)
Purple Line funding uncertain (WaPo)
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