Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Park slope hates me back

The F train wasn’t running today

Walked to 4th ave in the blissssterrring cooolddd

My hair was wet from the shower and parts were hard as a rock

Park slope hates me back.

- A poem by Ayary

Friday, August 14, 2009

July?/Help me, Howard

There have been several comments made, both over the web and in the far-less-common mode of communication of face to face conversation, regarding the lack of posts during the month of July. Some have questioned whether this meant the MTA was actually useful/efficient/enjoyable during this time period.
Ha. Haaa.
It simply meant the Muad'Dib was prevented from his/her usual prophecies and explanations. Prevented.
How, you ask? Well. Was it not mentioned in several previous entries that we were dealing with Pirates*? And dumpsters full of corruption? And alien babies? This is no small Web of Evil...
But we digress. The point is, your ever-faithful and heroic Muad'Dib was in the throes of something so perilous and mysterious that we can make no further mention of it...that is, until it is published. And then we will blow you away with the MTA's new levels of gross misconduct, illegal shenanigans, and generally asshole-ish shit that we uncover.

*Please see post from March 30th, 2009

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Winter Expectations (Don't Have Any)

Take note of the snow caking the outside of the train window. Take note of the people on the inside, who, though protected from the conditions of Mother Nature, are at the mercy of the conditions of the subway car. Take note of the expressions on every visible face. If the photo seems insignificant to you, it's because you have been thoroughly conditioned into a state of perpetual, unquestioned misery already, and no longer remember what it was like before you became ensnared in the evil web of the MTA.

Observations, 8.5.09

Today, at approximately 12:17pm, on the 6 line heading downtown:

Two strangers sitting side by side on the cold blue subway seats are swapping MTA horror stories. These stories mostly revolve around crazy train passengers or absurd situations never before encountered in life.
Apparently, MTA misery brings people together.

This is much like traumatized war veterans, shipwrecked passengers, victims of abuse, etc.
All of the above will remain scarred for life, alone in their struggle for sanity, normalcy, a sense of peace--things which may never actually return for them.
In fact, two such persons might just bring each other down, like recovering addicts alternately consoling and then enabling each other.

Thanks, MTA.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Never doubt the MTA's impeccable consistency in its attempts to fuck you over.
Example # 342: The 4th Ave and 9th Street stop in Brooklyn. Nine out of ten (9/10) times, the transfer from the F train to the R train will add an additional fifteen (15) minutes to what could be a six (6) minute commute, due to skilled coordination of trains.
If you've ever had to make this transfer, you are aware that the station is built like an old, decrepit castle with dark, winding, putrid staircases, exits and entrances at the farthest ends of convenience. In short, a true MTA masterpiece of construction. Walking from the F platform down to the R is a good 5 minutes, and that's if you're a young sprite-ish thing. This makes it particularly tantalizing when you get off the F train to hear the R train arriving, and, as you descend deeper into the dank corridors of the MTA, you begin to see people who have just exited the R train. By the time you arrive on the actual R platform, all that remains are the empty benches and red signals, signifying a good ten (10) minute wait is incumbent.
On a one out of ten (1/10) day, a remarkably not shitty day, the entire ride can be a pleasant ten (10) minutes, if that.
But it's dangerous to get on the train those days, for several reasons:

1. Your expectations rest at a higher standard, making you susceptible to severe depression and uncontrollable rage.
2. It means the Pirates have infected the train with rabies.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Read this book if you like junkies and trains and not good writing

"The Mole People," by Jennifer Toth

Though not very well-written--in fact, well-written is not a phrase I would ever use in describing Jennifer Toth's book--it is a book worth reading if you're a subway connoisseur and/or an urban myth junkie. Frankly, I am both, which allowed for a quick and pleasant, if somewhat grammatically irksome read. 
Ms Toth plays the role of the anthropologist documenting a rugged, undiscovered, literally underground scene, where she meets many characters who are clearly interesting and attempts to emphasize their fascinating lives, but the overall lack of structure for the book impedes her ability to effectively develop them throughout the work. Characters are generally considered more important in works of fiction, but in this non-fiction piece, it is they who help her tell the untold story of the mole people, and therefore they must be all the more vivid and tangible to the reader.
When reading this book, it becomes difficult to wonder how a young, upper-class white woman (who is not a native New Yorker) was able to delve into the dirty tunnels of New York City and uncover information about a group so insular they remained a legend until Toth's work. Though she details some of the grittiness involved in her investigation, and even narrates a few perilous situations she manages to survive, she is mostly unconvincing in her description of why she, of all people, was able to penetrate the dark recesses of New York City's underground community. Though perhaps it is not a very serious defect in her book, it certainly bothers my native New Yorker sensibilities. 
The greatest flaw of the book--ah, now we come to it. I've put down all my middling complaints, here is the real one--is her inability to coherently organize the book and her experiences to create a comprehensive or compelling story for the people she documents. 
But I'll end on a positive note, because I am not trashing the book, I'm even tentatively recommending it. Ultimately, the greatest attribute of the book is one that she did not design: the subject matter. Who doesn't like reading the sordid details of a junkie's habit? Or learning about the mysterious community that is so hermetic the author only hears about it from other communities? As humans we have a fascination for that which eludes us, and that which is deep, dark and clandestine. A mythical underground community comprised of society's untouchables both literally and figuratively fits that description. Excellent choice on subject matter, Ms Toth. But a recommendation for the future, from a veteran reader: You may be an excellent anthropologist, in terms of accessing an enclosed community and documenting untold stories, and a compassionate reporter for a neglected and rejected group (both self-imposed and otherwise), but you are not a good writer and your next work would be best aided by a collaboration with someone more adept in the organization and writing departments.

FUmta Commuter of the Week:

Monday, June 8, 2009

A snippet of the commuter experience + kittens

1 am on Saturday night. The F train stops at 23rd street - a useless stop like Delancey Street. Then. The train doesn't do anything. This means that everyone with a tendency to become crazy and start ranting or scratching/ singing publicly does this. After 15 minutes of mysterious loitering... nothing happens. Then the conductor kicks everyone off and sends them crying into the streets. 

A few sensible commuters decide to ask for a refund, which would buy a cheap beer in a paper bag on 5/9/2009. The same refund in July would buy a kitten.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

A word on who exactly works for the MTA organization:

The Metropolitan Transit Authority company is comprised entirely of only children. You know, offspring who grew up without siblings, generally spoiled rotten by parents, and consequently vessels of extreme socialization issues? Right. These are the men and women making the decisions, pulling the strings, manning the labor, behind all MTA actions and endeavors. Once this knowledge is assimilated into your perspective, it may be easier to understand how the MTA has had the guts to do what it has done and when.
The average life-cycle of an MTA employee goes something like this:

1. Born as a single child
2. Weird socialization tendencies develop, such as: snatching things out of other kids' hands; eating all the cookies in the cookie jar; chasing pet hamster around cage with magnifying glass at 3pm when the sun is just right; eventually letting same hamster die of toxicity from living in overwhelming amounts of own excrement due to lack of cage maintenance
3. Mating with sheep
4. Gainful employment at MTA (world-wide recession ensues)
5. Mating with pig (Swine-flu pandemic becomes imminent)
6. MTA promotion and pay-raise

So don't take it personally when the MTA shits all over you. It's just that they don't know any better. They were raised by parents who either didn't really want them, or were too stupid to have more children. MTA is only the unfortunate side effect of poor parenting.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

MTA Q & A, Part 1

The following are commonly asked questions and FUMTA answers that will aid commuters. We welcome questions from readers and will post another Q&A soon in anticipation of further inquiries.

Q: When will the new fare increases become applicable?
A: As soon as it becomes impossible for you to afford it.

Q: What will decreases in service mean for me and my morning commute?

Q: How should I decide what kind of MetroCard to get?
A: You must ask yourself certain questions, such as, How often do I plan on torturing myself subterraneously? Do I want to have the option for unlimited hell that expires in either a day, week, or month? Or do I want to select exactly how many times I can be miserable, applicable for whenever I want, without an expiration date? Your personal state of masochistic desires is the true determining factor in this equation. Also, you may want to consider how badly you want to be financially raped at the moment of purchase. Sometimes, little increments of raping over a long period of time is easier; sometimes getting brutally defiled in one sweeping molestation is preferred. Remember, this is a personal choice. There is no right answer. Only many, many wrong ones. 

Q: Whatever happened to the 9 train?
A: What will soon happen to the V train. Sometimes it takes years for the MTA to realize the obsolete and redundant nature of a particular train route. In the mean time, enjoy.*

Q: Who is Muad 'Dib? 
A:  A prophet of sorts who has seen through the mad trail of extortion, sewage and aborted fetuses that is the MTA and devoted his/her** leisure time to enlightening the confused and angry masses of commuters fed up with the corrupt system. 

Q: Where does Muad 'Dib get his/her sources for information?
A: Don't ask me about my business, Kay.

Q: I have been searching for a cool movie review site for years. Can you help?
A: Actually, yes. Soon there will be an amazing movie review site that will be better than anything currently on the internet. Be on the lookout for: www.diymreview.com

Q: Where can I find more up-to-date information on the MTA?
A: www.fumta.blogspot.com

*By "enjoy," we at FUMTA in no way mean to imply that you will actually receive any pleasure, convenience, or expedience from the MTA. In fact, it is best to expect the exact opposite. According to the online thesaurus, the antonyms of enjoy, in the context of "take pleasure in, from something," are: dislike, detest, hate. Also, in the context of "have the benefit of, use of," the antonyms are: lack, need, want. These antonyms are all words much more closely aligned with the feelings that the MTA will elicit from you. We apologize for any misconception we may have inadvertently caused. 

**In order to protect the identity of Muad 'Dib, whose safety, in speaking out against the evil forces of the MTA, is placed in great peril, it is necessary to refrain from divulging even the gender of the great prophet. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

What Went Wrong? A line-by-line analysis of the MTA budget

You have been raped. Yes. The MTA has just raped you and you should feel filthy and used. This is because your subway fares are being increased 28% while service is being cut. And you can't do Shit about it except take it.


But can you really just let this happen without at least understanding the cause?

Not long ago, the MTA tested the waters of public tolerance by raising the fare from $1.50 to $2.00 per ride under the pretext of financial melt-down. If you remember, the City of NY (after much B.S.) pried open the MTA's financial statements... The result turned out to be an alien autopsy on what was first believed to be human. The accountants cut in, found antennae, wings and three sets of genitals - then they closed the books back up and released the following statement: "….umm…"

The larger financial recession may have been a contributing factor to the collapse of the MTA. As you can imagine, it's much easier to kick someone in the head when they're already on the floor. This is the attitude the MTA has taken toward commuters, and has been the unofficial motto of the organization (followed by 30 seconds of evil laughter). To be fair, efforts have been made to cut costs. Instead of hiring expensive, highly trained accounting staff, the MTA decided several years ago to outsource money management to greedy death-row inmates in Folsom Prison, who are willing to work for a few days' extension on their life. Also, instead of paying expensive bank fees, the MTA has dug a large ditch to safeguard their revenue (using dynamite and prison labor). The ditch is located somewhere in East NY and is guarded by alligators and avian flu.

The truth is, there actually is an outlet for every dollar spent with the MTA. Nobody is just pocketing the money. Surprise. As the following excerpt from the MTA Income Statement will show, the majority of your money will actually be pocketed by many people and then spent on prostitutes and a galaxy of addictive high-powered drugs.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Day the Girl in the Fugly Blue Coat Swiped My Seat

She looked preggers, but
moved too fast to be one of those 
banged-up chicks.
her husband
looked like a child-hater/molester

She was reading a NY Times that was a day old,
like her hair.
Her voice was the sound a car makes
before dying.

Somehow, this gravid harpy slid into the orange seat
that I was hovering above,
mere seconds before I was able to rightfully take it
as my own. 


"Yet who would have thought the old man to have had so much blood in him?"

Dear Mandy,

Sorry you got murked by the F train. Your life, it was meaningful. But then, murked. And nobody noticed. Because the F train is operated by evil robots who don't care about your life or anyone's time. Murked. Muuurked. The sound, when your body met the F train, was like a large cat being squeezed between two cars. But nobody heard it because the poorly maintained tracks made everyone deaf.
Sincerely yours,

Muad 'Dib

Friday, March 20, 2009

F train was designed by Pirates*

There are only three F trains running through the tunnels connecting 179th Street/Jamaica, Queens and Coney Island, Brooklyn between the hours of 11am-1pm. This is how it is possible, during "off-peak" hours, to wait 10-25 minutes for a train that will eventually arrive on a crowded platform and have only two vacant seats.
Of the three trains running at that time, one is conducted by a former graffiti artist, who prefers coasting at a leisurely pace along the tracks, so as to peruse old and new works along the underground walls.
The other two trains have no human conductors. They are battery operated, with a pre-recorded voice (now you understand who operates those trains that run over people).
These three trains are usually filled with the societal leftovers of New York City: the slightly mentally ill, the jobless/soulless, would-be housewives (minus husbands to give them purpose), pedophiles, abandoned elderly, and degenerate students.
It is a train ride tainted with gray sludge and greasy hair, a hangover of smells.

*Many people think the F train is their favorite train. They cite that it goes through all the boroughs (Bronx/Staten Island are negligible for MTA), and makes many convenient stops along the way. These are people who know nothing.
In fact, the F train is a grossly inconvenient train, that makes traveling from two seemingly close spots interminably distant and difficult. This is because a long time ago, pirates who controlled that No-Man's-Land between Queens and Brooklyn, refused to allow the MTA to build tracks that would have made travel from, say, Jackson Heights to Park Slope, a mere 30-minute commute. They forced the MTA instead to build a winding snake track all through Manhattan's most despicable neighborhoods. To this day, pirates still control the vast majority of territory in New York City, and continue to place ridiculous embargoes on the MTA, which is one of the key causes of the fare hike and the World-wide Recession.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Proper use of Subway Advertisements

For those of us who are very old and are now a participating cog in society, we know that drinking has become at least partially medicinal - doing it on the train is probably the only way to replicate the feeling of adventurous adolescent boozing.  Hobos and newly arrived immigrants have the right idea.

Honesty will compel you to admit that boozing was more fun when the Man was keeping you down.  Clanking bottles in your schoolbag and avoiding the parent(s) when you get home = nostalgia.  Now, nobody cares if you come home stinking of gin and fear.  On the subway, the Man is always keeping you down.  Holding you down by the back of your neck while simultaneously counting your money and penetrating you.

The moral of the story is this:  subway advertisements are there for you to steal when you are very drunk late at night with friends.  Later, when the economy finally gets you, your poster collection can be used to cover your head from the cold November rain. 

Monday, March 9, 2009

9 out of 10 homeless people choose MTA

The MTA has 4 shifts.  But you only have 4 or more hours of life to hand over to the MTA every day.  They want to keep you on that train for a long time.  Somehow, someone profits from that.  

You can catch a good train ride on weekday mornings from 7-8.  

If you fuck up and get on the train between 8 and 10, you can experience agony.  Because the train conductor is getting a divorce/ his wife cheated on him/ he is a woman/ her husband is cheating on her/ abortion.  the savings are passed on to you in the form of 50 people in the space of 8 people.

10 am through 5 pm you may get a foreigner.  

Then you'll travel home.   The difficulty going home is that the conductor will probably be insane.  He (she) may jabber at you (standclearadoorstandcleardadoorSTANDCLEAR!!!!adadoors) or thrust uninteligable nonsense on you via the speaker [(loud crackling)(twenty-two-seven-OK. (loud crackling)We have a red signal due to... (shriek)(loud crackling) Stand clear)].  And you'll be lucky not to go backward.