By adamg on Thu, 06/30/2011 - 5:29pm Kat MacArthur reports: Testing out the quiet car on Lowell line. Right now someone is on cell phone. ... Conductor told woman not to use cellphone in quiet car. As he exits, "I pay $300 a month. I don't care" she did hang up Neighborhoods: Topics: The TFree tagging: Commuter rail, Lowell Line Tweet WidgetFacebook Like Comments It's actually $223 My morning quiet car into Lowell has been delightful, but unfortunately the 6:55 p.m. train I take back isn't considered rush hour so there's no quiet car. I've never minded talking but what gets me is the people who play music on their phones' speakers. Sometimes it's not even a group sharing the music it's just one dude! I've often wondered about I've often wondered about that "speaker" and music play. The T has a policy on no Boom Boxes (yeah you can tell that was put into place in 1982!), and I remember reading somewhere it was specific in saying "all musical devices must be heard with headphones only". (of course its gone from mbta.com now) I wonder where "cell phone boomboxes" come into play. Its increasingly becoming annoying. I was squished next to a guy the other day on a very crowded bus who INSISTED on listening to his music via is Android on speaker. I almost hauled off and decked him. BUT I also wonder how the T expects to enforce these quiet cars. I seriously doubt they'll throw people off a train for that but besides that, what CAN you do except ask people to move? And since usually the offending person is already thinking they are 'in the right' in doing whatever they want on the car "because they pay 300 dollars", they'll probably will thumb their nose at the conductor and just continue as this person did. Sometimes I wish the US were like other countries. In some countries, they WILL stop the train and push you off in the middle of nowhere if you are a problem passenger. This would NEVER happen in the US due to our tree hugging, PC.. gotta-be-nice-to-everyone society. Its just gotta stop, people won't learn until it happens to them and word spreads. BUT since we don't do that, people just continue to exploit that, and push the envelope even more. Sometimes a strong upper hand is the only thing that makes people learn and listen. Why waste the energy and Why waste the energy and aggravation pushing through a crowd to punch them? Just brandish a firearm. That'll shut 'em up!!!! Better yet... I'm sure that a well aimed squirt gun to the cell phone would help. I doubt there is any way I doubt there is any way to enforce the quiet car. I suspect it will quietly fade away. We've already had a person here on a previous thread state that they had no intention of observing the rules of the quiet car, as once onboard they had to call and inform their ride waiting at the other end that the train has departed the station. As if they couldn't make the call from the platform before the train departs! Heaven forbid. The sense of entitlement some people have is beyond belief. I hope patrons will start I hope patrons will start doing "Sshhhh" and taking matters into their own hands. You'd be surprised at what peers can do. Dirty looks do a lot. Apparently its working on the Stroller Issue on the buses. I've been noticing a TON of mothers lately putting up the handicapped seats for strollers. I'm sure some of this is bus drivers showing people how, but I've seen other passengers show mothers how to do. And I've shown a few myself (with a "great idea, thanks" compliment) The entitled Yes, self-entitled assholes are difficult to deal with...however, most often their mouthing off about "screw you, I paid my $300" is only because they are simultaneously both defensive and unafraid of the consequences. Kicking them off or taking their ticket (check, it says they can confiscate your ticket for "misuse") will quickly sink in...and most will even back down if the threat is real enough. In the meantime, the Quiet Car concept isn't new. Amtrak has one on pretty much every train and people abide by it. It just has to be well-marked and people will have to come to expect it. Give it some time. Long Reprint From Previous Thread About Quiet Cars I posted this to a similar thread (a couple of years back, I think.) This is from my blog, and quite lengthy, so if you don't have patience for some reading, cool. It's about my experiences in an AMTRAK Quiet Car. The moral, if you don't feel like reading it all, is that it pays to let the conductor know about violations to the policy. ******************************************************** AMTRAK has had a wonderful idea. On our train, there was a designated "Quiet Car." If you choose to sit in this car - which MY WIFE and I did - you voluntarily agree to forgo use of cell phones. You are also asked to keep conversation to a minimum and at a low volume. Of course, three seats up to our right, a woman was making a cell phone call. About a minute after she started, the conductor came through and informed her that there were no cell phones allowed. After he continued on his way, she said to whomever she was calling, "I don't know. He says there's no cell phones in this car. Yeah, I know. Anyway..." and she kept on talking. Now, I'm no shrinking violet, but I'm also not needlessly belligerent. I was trying to nap a bit, and I was willing to wait a minute or so for the woman to finish her call. However, it appeared she was like many cell phone users. She had no intention of ever finishing her call. After listening to her chatter inanely for at least 10 minutes - and hoping in vain for someone else to speak up about it - I had had enough. I went over to her and said, "You know, there are no cell phones allowed in this car." I smiled while I said it. I was hoping she would say something like, "Oh. I'm sorry. Even though the conductor told me that information just a few minutes ago, I must have let it slip from my peanut-sized brain. Thank you for reminding me. I'll hang up now." Instead, she said, "Yeah? So?" I was, of course, taken aback by the sparkling wit of her retort. I continued, "You were told by the conductor: No cell phones. And I'd appreciate it if you'd hang up." "I will, as soon as I'm done." "You should be done NOW. Cell phones are not allowed in this car." She then said, "Do you work for the railroad?" I said, "No, I just ride the railroad, same as you. And same as all of the other passengers here who decided to sit in the quiet car where no cell phones are allowed." "Well, if you don't work for the railroad, then I don't think you have the authority to tell me to stop my call." I would like to be able to say that I took the phone from her hand, threw it to the floor, stomped on it with both feet, and then chucked her out of the window, enjoying greatly the sight of her bloody and mangled body bouncing down the tracks back towards Boston. However, what I did was say... "Right. Well, I guess I'll just have to get someone who does have the fucking authority." (In keeping with the spirit of the quiet car, I said it in as sotto voce a way as it is possible to say a sentence with "fucking" in it.) I walked through seven cars worth of people chatting on their phones and got the conductor. That's the amazing thing about this. Every other car on the train was available for making calls. Ours was the only car designated as a no-call zone. All she had to do was walk twenty feet into the next car and then she would have been able to gabble away as idiotically as she desired and nobody would have cared a whit. Instead, she chose to be an ignorant asshole. What drives someone like that? The conductor came back to the car. He told her that she had been previously warned, in no uncertain terms, to put the phone away, and he said that if he got any more complaints about her, he would put her off of the train at the next station. Hurray, AMTRAK! I wish I had gotten his name. He deserved a nice letter to his superiors. She gathered up her things and moved into a car full of other people who also enjoy unlimited squawking, bleating, and blathering. (Huh. I'm one to talk about blathering. Pot, meet kettle.) Suldoghttp://jimsuldog.blogspot.com Quiet cars This is easily my favorite quiet car ouster of all time. Massholes can be obnoxious, but we can't hold a candle to Connecticut commuters on the Metro-North. I can't decide which is better That video or the fact there are already parodies of it. And you thought being a conductor... ...was an easy job. ;-) You gotta give these conductors a medal of honor for maintaining all their cool. I like the "I'm a highly educated person". Somehow, she forgot to say "Do you realize who I am?". Amtrak, not AMTRAK Suldog, AAA. (Amtrak Ain't an Acronym) I agree with you, anon. It is pretty disgusting. That sense of entitlement that so many people have when it comes to inconsiderate cellphone use in public places, generally, including subway cars, has been around a long, long time, as has unacceptable behavior, generally, but the advent of cellphones and texting has taken it to a whole other level. Some countries, such as Israel, have electronic systems in place that will cause a cellphone or pager, or whatever, to jam up when an invidual attempts to use them in public places, generally. Too bad that couldn't be implemented here in the United States, including on public transportation. Wow- My fav is the guy or gal in the coffee shop talking for all to hear on their cell phone. But that isn't as bad as the poor college grad I saw plopped down at a table in a full coffee shop for an interview a couple months back. Compelled to give her life story for the whole store to hear. Felt bad for her- and contempt for the indecent clod interviewing her. People are losing respect for people around them Yeah, I've noticed this too. Young people especially seem like they haven't been taught to STFU in public places. But adults also have largely stopped the it-takes-a-village approach of going over and politely asking teens to quiet it down. Oh, and the interview thing: http://1smootshort.blogspot.com/2009/12/free-theat... I've actually figured out that at one of the Starbuckses where this this takes place, people who prepare rich kids for college interviews tend to meet with them there, so you have some youngun earnestly giving her (it's usually a her) life story. My favorite annoying coffee shop discussion scene: http://youtu.be/pJ51BNYXbV4?t=26s From Louis CK's show on FX. Respect has been gone for a long time, if it was ever there. Getting back to the Boom Box comment from 1982 and respect. Have people always had respect for one another? 1982 on the "Wrong End" of the Red Line sucked. Boom boxes with 8 D batteries blasting out in hindsight some really good early hip hop was for a 13 year old coming home from school really scary and earsplitting. That was nearly 30 years ago. I'm sure there was some great jackarses on the Watertown trolley in 1952 acosting 17 year old girlst and some tools on the Boston Revere Beach and Lynn Railway in 1922 with their legs over three seats and somebody on the Brighton Center / Central Square trolley brushing up against a woman in 1892. Indeed- - It's especially amusing to hear 20 somethings get philosophical in public and talk like they are Platos or something. heard two in a line at an ATM waxing smart on how doctors are really just glorified mechanics and how anyone can be one . . . Hello! There is a line of people here listening to you in a town full of medical professionals! Greek/geek chorus It's fun to join in with the obnoxious. Get two or three folk, sidle near the gabber, and then comment on the conversation. They are always shocked, sometimes indignant, while the rest of the car is amused and often laughing at them. For the ones who are so oblivious they demand you leave them alone, you tell them they made the whole car part of the conversation, you didn't. A great idea Larry David also advocates this approach. Not an exact match . . . . . . But wicked funny nonetheless. Night bruins won the Cup- a high school buddy who was over to watch the game and I went out to see the celebrations and we were sitting on the stones on the pier across the street from Legals- a couple tour trolley's were parked nearby. then a group of teachers from West Virginia in town for some conference came up to us- and I guess they assumed we were trolley bus drivers- and they began talking to us as if mid conversation about when we were going to be driving them back to their hotel- my buddy - played along and even got on the phone with their boss when they handed him a cellphone and BS-Ed the guy. Took them about ten minutes to figure out we were just two guys sitting on the pier and not trolley bus drivers. They didn't think it was funny though- and called US rude! cell phone music on the T You could always say, "Could you turn off the music, please?" It's also getting more and more common for me to be on a bus where someone *with* headphones has the music cranked so loud that it's still a nuisance. If I can't hear the music of the person right next to me, nor the other 10 people on the bus with headphones, there's no reason why I should have to hear noise from one person all the way in the back who's bothering the entire bus. Hey at least the headphone Hey at least the headphone folks are trying to keep it to themselves.. of course killing their hearing in the process. But its a start. The cell phone folks just don't care. And whats funny is some of them act like it sounds good on that crappy speaker, like its a Bose speaker or something. *shakes head* Awesome alliteration again Awesome alliteration again Adam. Artful assonance again, anon. Artful assonance again, anon. Paying $300/month means you Paying $300/month means you can do anything anywhere on the train. Rather than just getting on a different car, throw all respect to the wind. Just imagine the power one wields for $2k/month apartment. You don't have to piss in the bathroom, you can go out in the hall or foyer, even if the landlord tells you not to, because, well... $2k/month! That means you're GOD. When you hear someone talking When you hear someone talking loudly on a cell phone for all to hear, look at the person and act as though he/she is having the conversation with you. Comment to them on what they are saying ("Oh really, then what happened?", etc.) Hopefully, that may annoy them enough to either move or hang up. I utterly dread the day the I utterly dread the day the FAA allows cell phones on planes, and I'm hoping they never, ever do. But on the off chance they do, should I wind up next to someone who won't stop chatting away, my miniature can of orange juice will wind up in their lap. As a Masshole currently dislocated to the DC area, here's one of my favorites from the Metro. And when I say "favorite," I mean favorite way to lose faith in humanity (language NSFW): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMlA1GscQkk *weeps in corner* oh, MBTA, I really do miss you. I understand the frustration there, jeveuxavior, but this: my miniature can of orange juice will wind up in their lap. just might get you in trouble, if one gets the drift.