Monday, April 2, 2012

Why we should not fix the imperial capital's Metro escalators

Before I speak about the DC metro's escalator failures, a few introductory remarks:

We Americans are, let's face it, overweight (put simply, obscenely fat, in a world where many have not enough to eat) more than ever in our history.

To stop this disquieting trend (and is it not disquieting, to the body and the mind?) we need not yet another Federal Program, but simply for us as citizens, on our own, to engage (an over-used buzzword by the current administration) far more than we do in the most elementary of human activities -- walking, including walking up stairs (hey -- this will save us money going to an expensive gym to "lose weight"), to prevent/overcome the troublesome US obesity epidemic, which is costing taxpayers immense sums of money in terms of  medical care -- and I am talking as an overweight person myself.

We need to get out of the plastic cocoon of  physical immobility, part of our consumer culture that forces us, with our silent agreement, that we non-stop eat, eat, eat; incessantly stare, stare, stare at (while being in an airless office cubicle or as a suburban couch potato) TV/the Internet; endlessly gas-guzzling drive, drive, drive (often to nowhere except the shopping center to "buy food"), without using any muscle of our temporal, divinely-given bodies that envelop our souls while on this small planet and that make our lives worth living (pardon the superficial spirituality).

Now to get back to the Metro DC

I say to the imperial capital's authorities and to us DC citizens, who do not have full representation in Congress, despite Washington being the capital of the "free world": Maybe they/we should dump efforts to "fix" DC's Metro failed elevator system. Such constant USA malfunction would put a Third World country to shame and, given Metro's efforts to overcome this bureaucratic/technical "issues" ("issue": 21st Century Newspeak), I am skeptical it can ever solve it with success. (I lived in Moscow from 1998-2001; never did I see, for all that city's malfunctions, an escalator breakdown in its metro system). But that was another era.

Instead of expensive "repairs,'  let's think big:

Dear DC/Federal government/committed public transportation citizens: Get rid of most escalators altogether. Encourage a new lifestyle: let citizens, of all ages (including 64-year geezers like myself) actually to walk up/down non-moving stairs on their way down/up the metro station. It will do wonders for them at their early-morning staff meetings. Having had some exercise, they will feel relaxed, and friendlier toward their colleagues. And they won't have to spend their hard-earned dollars on Starbucks "coffee" to feel "energetic." After "work," following a good hike up the Metro non-moving stairs, they can settle back with friends/family over dinner -- not that we Americans have any "time" for breaking bread with others, including family members, after "work" -- we're too busy collapsing in front of Jay Leno/Jon Stewart Tee-Vee-humor, a sure recipe for assuring that we will have indigestion with the take-out food that makes us obscenely obese.

Of course, for those who read this piece without a sense of irony, as its modest proposal  with a serious intent (walk more, eat less) is a near-impossibility: It does not suggest excluding means of making it possible for disabled citizens to use public transportation, including Metro elevators (today, as is the case with escalators, all-too-often out of order).

American efficiency

Meanwhile, a final word regarding America and the world, my main intellectual interest: While the escalators/elevators don't work in the subway of  the imperial capital of the country that put an American on the Moon (some justifiably wonder, actually, why), are Americans in in a position to claim that we should teach the world about American efficiency?

My suggested official answer; I mean, like, if the DC system, like, doesn't, like whatever. Well, like, ok,  whatever ...  Sorry, I 'm on my cell-phone. Twitter me via ...forgot what I said, like, facebook  whatever  ...

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