Friday, November 17, 2006

the train

The rough draft of this post is being thumbed on my Treo over the course of 3 trips as I ride to and from work on MARTA, Atlanta's transit system. MARTA's rail system is pretty basic, consisting of just two lines: east/west and north/south. They cross each other beneath downtown in a station called 5 Points (which has always bothered me because really its just 1 point. At MOST it could be called 4 Points if you consider that at maximum capacity 4 trains all moving in different directions COULD be in the station at one time. It's called 5 points because of it's proximity to an intersection of 5 streets, which I get, but the STATION, regardless of it's location was misnamed, IMO... Anyway) The rail component of MARTA is definitely the star, but the busses are the real hard workers. Thing is, no one wants to ride the bus. I don't blame 'em. MARTA busses are almost never on time and frequently take very circuitous routes to get where they are going. Having said all that...

When people complain to me about traffic or the price of gas, I very proudly mention that I usually take the train to work so I haven't really noticed. They tell me I’m lucky to live near a station, but I am NOT lucky, I am SMART! I CHOSE to live where I do so I could take advantage of what little mass transit the ATL has to offer. I picked THIS NEW CONDO partly because of it's easy access to Marta. Even when I didn’t live close to a station, I STILL found a way to use mass transit as often as possible.

I admit it's easier for me to make a choice like this because I DO live alone, and I DON’T have any kids and I DON’T want a yard, but there are still mass transit options for people who do. It might mean 20 more minutes travel time to get to work by bus and or train, but you can spend that time reading or playing a game on your phone or even BLOGGING (none of which I recommend while behind the wheel).

So what's more important to you? An extra 20 mins of sleep before you start your commute OR keeping one less car off the road? You can always take a nap, but how are you going to suck that exhaust BACK into your tailpipe?

Tomorrow: THIS NEW CONDO has a cash flow problem.

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