I hope the Russians love their children, too...
are you crazy?
[Breaking Bad Season 4 Finale Spoiler:]
it's past 4am. you're still up. you should try to get at least a little sleep. but you can't stop thinking about this thing. you can't stop looking for ways to punish yourself with criticism. you can't help but comb through that scant hour, every move, every line, as if that fairly innocuous conversation was a fucking crime scene. it wasn't. it isn't. the conversation went exactly the way it needed to go. stop obsessing.
Note to self --
... the machines are virtually designed to ruin your day.This is not just a problem with my Metrocard. Tuesday morning, after I failed to get through my regular entrance I watched a number of other people getting the same slap in the face as they tried the same turnstiles. It's a fucking epidemic. And the pain of it is, there's no station agent at that entrance, so you've got to exit and cross the street to the main entrance to find an agent who'll let you through.
For starters, your MetroCard must hit four sensors before you gain admission to the twilight world of the New York City subway system. The first sensor verifies that you're indeed swiping a MetroCard rather than, say, your D'Agostino's Rewards card. The second ascertains that the card is flush enough to afford the fare; the third deducts the fare; and the fourth opens the gate.
"If the card doesn't go completely through the sensor," Mr. Foley explained, "it's not going to work. It's got to be level."
The speed of the swipe is also crucial—it can't be too fast or too slow. The optimum is described rather disturbingly by Paul Fleuranges, NYC Transit's vice president for corporate communications: "a steady swipe—like a punch to the gut."
The problem, of course, is that if the machine balks and the barrier fails to yield, you may feel like you've been punched in the gut, or elsewhere, depending on your height and on how important you believe it is to make the train. "I've seen people double over, briefcase flying," Mr. Foley stated cheerfully.
Perfecting your swiping technique is no guarantee of success. The machines must also be lovingly maintained. According to Mr. Foley, the union man, they've suffered as the MTA has cut back the number of maintenance workers. He says the cut is to 228 from 242 workers, while Deirdre Parker, the MTA's deputy director for public affairs, contends that "the correct count was 228 in 2009 and 224 in 2010."