On the Yellow Line

Subtitle: (Dis)Orient(ed) Express

I once did a posting called “On the Blue Line,” referring to my observations on the Metro. These days, I take the Yellow Line because, well, the station closest to my house can suck it, charging me $10 to get out of the lot after midnight on a Friday. Bah.

Anyway, I opted to Metro down to the Love Cafe for Fray and of course cake (Mojito Rum Buttercream tonight, thanks). The joy was overwhelming as the escalators were off and/or in disrepair at both my station and at the side of the U Street Station where I exited. Minor delays, but nothing eventful. At that point, anyway.

So, Fray. Good Fray Day. (I think that could be a new religious holiday for the non-Catholics among us (I say this despite being baptized) — Good Fray Day!) *ahem*

Where was I? Oh yeah, stories and stuff. 🙂 Tiff did an amazing job pulling the event together on no budget, Tom was perhaps my favorite storyteller of the night and an excellent right-hand to Tiff, and, well, there was cake. AN EIGHT DOLLAR PIECE OF CAKE, but cake so good I just wanted to do graphic things to it. (Sorry for that visual, Tiff. Really! LOL)

Anyway, Tiff was trying to nudge me to go tell stories when the mic was open. I wanted to. Lord knows I have about six million of them, and I always love hogging the spotlight when there’s a live mic around (*cough JournalCon cough*). But I couldn’t find my voice tonight, even though I was desperately patching together story remnants in my head to make a cohesive one, just in case. But it never gelled. Bah. Clearly, I’m not gellin’ tonight.

Speaking of patching remnants, I wanted to impale the knitting club with their needles — they were clearly having a stich-and-bitch session. This group of chatty women knitted together in the cafe, and they weren’t exactly quiet when I was hanging around next to them, trying to hear the storytellers. So I moved into the draft of the front door, but at least I could hear. 🙂

A really good story that stuck with me was Amy and her “meat dance.” A former vegetarian, she was asked if she ate meat by people who clearly anticipated the answer to be no. And she remembered a lovely Greek sandwich she’d eaten earlier and did a little meat dance in her seat (kind of like the Cabbage Patch or Churn the Butter) and said “It. Tastes. So. Good!” ROFL. I know one of my readers can appreciate the meat dance as much as I did.

In any event, it should go without saying that featured speakers Bill and Julia were superb, having us laughing and crying, respectively, and sometimes having us do both simultaneously.

Anyway, back to the Yellow Line. First, I had the pleasure of Tom and Tiff’s company on the Green Line (minus the stankalicious guy who waited on the platform right next to me for 16 minutes. Pooh!). But, alas, I was left to my own devices and bravely hopped onto the Yellow at L’Enfant Plaza.

I was in for a good ride. Until. …

We had just made a stop and inched forward three feet and THEN WE STOPPED. The driver patiently explained something to the effect that “We have zero speed capacity.” He came on seven or eight more times, getting edgier each time, to repeat that information and to say, “And no, I am not going to open the doors. I cannot open the doors. We have left the platform and the doors WILL NOT OPEN.” I guess some of the people in the other cars must have been asking.

Me? Oh, yeah, that’s the fun part. I. AM. CLAUSTROPHOBIC!!!! The only thing I fear more than failure and down escalators (major fear of falling) is an enclosed space. I mean, you don’t want to ride with me in the winter because I’ve got the sunroof open — anything to feel/hear the breeze. I must have been suffocated in a past life.

Anyway, the announcements kept up regularly, and the driver said there was a big computer failure somewhere and well, deal with it. I love WMATA, don’t you? 😉

In any event, I occupied myself during my imprisonment by listening to a guy two rows of seats behind me. He was speaking in a normal tone of voice, asking such questions as “Why” and “I don’t understand how it happened this way” and “It wasn’t supposed to be like this” and “What am I going to do?” Quite honestly, I suspected he was a mindreader, because, well, those are the kind of things I say to myself on the Metro. 😉

But that’s the thing — he was saying all of these things to HIMSELF. This just goes to show how our society has (d)evolved in just the past decade — I assumed he was on a cell phone! Nobody shows up on our radar anymore as people about whom to be concerned … we don’t think to look for phones or hands-free devices. In any event, this only served to exacerbate my claustrophobia.

Maybe 10 minutes passed, and we were off. My stop was the very next one (“Hallelujah and holy shit” — Clarke Griswold) and I managed to be the first of probably 80 people out of the station. I jumped into my beloved Samantha and pealed the hell away from my parking space.

I really do love D.C. Honestly and truly. But some days, I really love it when I cross that invisible line into Old Dominion … particularly when it’s my foot on the gas pedal.

On iTunes: Bon Jovi, “I’d Die For You”

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