We Wish We Could Quit You, MBTA
We’ve had some pretty crappy relationships in our lives, but the one we have with you may be the worst of them all. You keep us waiting around for a bus ten minutes after its scheduled arrival. You seem to never be there when we need you, like after the Sox win the World Series and we want to go home. But the biggest problem our relationship has is your inability to listen to us.
We told you we didn’t like T Radio. Then you ended the trial program, and we thought that maybe you had changed. Maybe you would start to treat us like adults when we voice serious concerns about the services you provide.
Just weeks after rider complaints spiked T-Radio, ending the news, ads and announcements that had briefly played over station public address systems, T officials are contemplating running television programming and ads on screens in 21 stations.
All of the planned 256 public-address screens will be able to display animated images, including news, weather, sports and ads, system wide maintenance director John Lewis told the MBTA Board of Directors last week. The board approved $2.4 million to buy the screens, which will also show station announcements and next-train countdowns.
It breaks our heart when you treat us this way. We don’t want to be assaulted with advertisements as we wait for our trains. Watching Dan Grabauskas awkwardly read a TelePrompter may be funny at first, but it would start to really bother us after a while. A cartoon series of Charlie on the MBTA wouldn’t brighten our day—it would make us homicidal.
We’ve told you before, but we’ll say it again: What would really make us happy is a reliable public transit system. We know you’re going through a hard time, what with all your debt, but that’s no excuse for not listening to us.
We think we should spend some time apart. Call us when you’re ready to listen to our needs.