Card Stop

Ok, I’ve never claimed to be the most patient person alive, but sometimes I feel like the universe is trying to make me throw myself in front of the next subway train.

You know how I like to educate you on the etiquettes of public transportation? (Hey, otherwise I’m just sitting around being polite with all this useless knowledge in my head.) Welp, it has come to my attention that the masses are greatly lacking in social graces when it comes to purchasing a simple thing: a Metrocard. (See also: LIRR tickets)

The Metrocard is your subway ticket. It can be refilled or replaced at various machines resembling ATMs that can be found at almost any subway entrance.

To procure a Metrocard, you have to complete the following steps:

1. Hit “Start”
2. Select your language.
3. Do you want to refill your Metrocard, buy a new Metrocard, or buy a single ride (self-explanatory, but it’s one trip).
4. Assuming you are not buying a single ride, you must then decide how much money is going on your Metrocard.
5. Are you paying with cash, credit card, or ATM card?
6. Pay.
7. It tells you that you are going to be charged. You agree or cancel.
8. Accept your Metrocard.
9. Do you want a receipt?


You literally have to hit seven buttons. The whole process should take less than a minute.


Yesterday morning (which you already know did not start well), I experience two kinds of people that gum up the works for everyone trying to purchase a Metrocard.

Person One: The guy who cannot get his card to work.
On one hand, I appreciate you using a credit or debit card. It’s much quicker than cash, and many machines don’t even accept bills. The problem arises when the maching just will not recognize your card. I say you get eight tries to make it work. Eight. If the machine still doesn’t recognize your card on the eighth try, you get out of line and try again after you’ve waited. Because the person behind you has a card that will work. And they will not appreciate watching two trains go by while they are waiting for you to come to the realization that it’s just not happening.

Person Two: The guy who is literally buying eight cards.
Nope. You are not special. You do not own the machine just because it is your turn in line. You get a normal amount of time to buy each card. Which means you can buy, at MAX two cards each turn. Then you get back in line. Because this is not your personal card machinem, and I GOT in this line because only one person was ahead of me, NOT TEN. If you want to buy TEN cards, come back when it’s NOT rush hour and buy as many cards as you WANT.

Phew. Glad to get that out.

I think it all comes down to remembering that you are not the only person in the universe. Other people want to get to work, too. So remember that. Please.

Or one day, it’s going to get ugly.