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To: WMATA, the guys who hand out the 37 different free papers at Metro Stations and the GW Kids Trying to Sell Me Krispy Kremes
From: Ticked Off Metro Rider
Re: You Suck
Every morning, I get up, take care of the assorted rituals that make me acceptable in the work place (showering, shaving, daily affirmations) and drag myself to the Foggy Bottom Metro stop in anticipation of another fine day of drudgery in the nation’s capital. Then I actually get to within twenty feet of the station: a total madhouse that prevents me from reaching the escalator without busting out the ninja skills. Why? A lot of reasons:
1) Of the three escalators, only two are working. Which means the thousands of people who are coming and going through the station, have to squeeze on two escalators. Escalators malfunction. I get it. But WMATA, this winter, you took each of the three escalators out in succession, each for weeks at a time. Fair enough. A little preventative maintenance never hurt anyone. BUT, you started the process AGAIN two weeks ago. WHY? Did the escalator gremlins come back? Stop feeding them after midnight.
And those signs you put up saying when the project will be completed? Bogus. Worse on-time rate than United. Maybe if the WMATA escalator team worked more than three hours a day, the job could be done faster. If I have to use the escalator to get to work by 9, you should be working on it at 9.
2) No less than three newspaper hawkers stand within 10 FEET of the escalators, moving around like linemen trying to hand out their papers so they can go home. Express, Examiner, Street Sense and more. Guys, we appreciate the free news you bring us (though it’s a lot easier to read on-line), but give us a break. There is no need to stand right at the top of the escalators, and wave your hands about like you’re blocking Jordan trying to drive the lane. Give us some space. And don’t look at me like I kicked a puppy if I don’t take your paper. Maybe I’m just into my iPod.
3) The GW students who set up mobile-Krispy Kreme franchises at the top of the escalators. Ok, kids, I was your age just a few minutes ago, so I get it. Sometimes, you’re doing the Lord’s work: raising money for charity by bilking yuppies. I appreciate that. But, please do not try to sell me anything or get me to contribute so you can pay for spring break in Cabo.
Dudes: I do not want to buy a box of donuts so you have money for Spanish Fly. Save your money, and get a haircut; it works just as well. Ladies: I’m not paying for your time in the tanning bed so you can look like you grew up in Miami and not Jersey, where you’re really from. "How’s my coloring?" Terrible. You like Dracula. Get over it.
In short: Mayor Fenty: get WMATA moving. Newspaper guys: back off. GW students: can I go with you to Cabo?

UPDATE: Meg had a similar experience recently.