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Photograph: Courtesy Creative Commons/Flickr/Juha Uitto

It’s not me, it’s you—our breakup letters to the MTA

Written by
Nick Leftley

By Time Out New York contributors, edited by Nick Leftley

You may have noticed that your experience of riding the subway was even worse than usual this morning, thanks to the fare hike that took place yesterday (see our favorite tweets on the matter here). These new prices feel like yet another knife between the ribs for everyone in New York who takes the subway every day, and with no visible improvements to show for the price increase (especially on the L Train), we’re having a serious think about this terrible, terrible relationship.

Dear L train,
I know we agreed to keep it casual, but I can’t help noticing that even though we’re seeing each other on a very regular basis, you still seem to be letting other people get inside you all the time. Lots of them. Thousands, actually, often while I’m inside you at the same time. In fact you are now so full of your other “casual” relationships that I sometimes have to wait till you’ve come a couple times before I can even squeeze into you. Frankly, while it all seemed new and exciting at first, it just isn’t doing it for me anymore, and I’m looking for something more serious and monogamous—like a car.

Dear G Train,
On weekdays you’re usually sober and show up on time right when I need you, but on weekends you get crazy. I have friends that are straight up “afraid of you.” Frankly, I don’t blame them. A twenty-minute wait time between trains on nights and weekends you say? Try an hour and twenty. You just aren’t dependable anymore and I’m leaving you for Uber. It’s like you have an evil twin and maybe you do, because I think there are only two of you.

Dear MTA,
I know you've tried to make an effort since I told you I felt like you weren't cleaning up after yourself, but I can't take it any more. Me and the rats will be picking up our stuff tomorrow.

Dear MTA on Sunday:
You must have had a lot to drink last night, because today you stink, you’re late and you can barely function. Even the simplest of activities—getting me to Park Slope from Midtown for some Goddamn artisanal beer tasting—seems impossible on a Sunday, even after three transfers and two buses. I suggest you get help.

Dear 7 Train,
Thanks for years of teasing us with that 10th Ave extension, ETA: 20never. Are you sure you even go to Manhattan anymore?

Dear crosstown bus,
Why do you send me such mixed signals when I try to get on you? Your stops have a ticket machine, but you can’t get a ticket unless you already have a Metrocard with money on it, but then you don’t sell Metrocards, so how do you get a ticket if your card’s run out? And why do we need the ticket? Why can’t we just swipe our Metrocard when we get on you? You are confusing and hurtful, crosstown bus, and if we’re being brutally honest here, you smell. Yeah, I said it. We’re through.

Dear MTA,
I'm tired of this one-sided relationship. I keep giving you my money and you can't even be counted on to show up on time, smell good and make any Goddamn sense when you talk to me. Stop jerking me around—literally. (Use the breaks a little more smoothly, will ya?)

Dear MTA,
I feel like we're not communicating any more. In fact, I actually can't understand a word you say when you shout announcements through that ancient speaker in the train car. Literally, not a word. Are you telling me the train is delayed? That you think I look cute in these duck boots? That you feel like I'm ignoring you? I give up. Please don't leave a message, I wouldn't be able to understand that either.

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