Commuting adventures between Tacoma and Seattle.

Category: Uncategorized

Wardrobe Malfunction

Remember the Giant Pile of Laundry?  Today, instead of wearing her usual brown velour bell-bottoms, she wore a slinky pink dress with some big flowers printed on it near the bottom.  Not sure it went well with the giant puffy jacket and overstuffed backpack, but we’ll overlook that for the moment.

Train arrives in Seattle and she bolts out the door as usual, taking full advantage of the freedom and mobility afforded to her by her summer attire.  Her gait remains the same–hunched over, lumbering along, clenched fists, fully flexed wrists, and an arm swing reminiscent of bigfoot.  One characteristic that always caught my attention is the way she carries her arms as they swing.  With her fists pointing outward, she only swings her arms forward and never rearward past her hips, and her elbows are somewhat hyperextended as though she’s trying to rub the insides of her forearms together.  With the 30-degree hunch and zombie-like stagger it looks like she’s doing some kind of crude “Mashed Potato” dance all the way up to the stairs.

The climb up the stairs is usually equally elegant, but today was something special.  About a quarter of the way up the stairs–and I shit you not–her underwear falls down to her ankles.  “Plop”.  It didn’t sneak it’s way down; it simply appeared as if from nowhere.  What was already an awkward stair-climbing style had leveled-up with a tripping hazard tangled around her feet.  What does this Giant Pile of Laundry do?  She keeps trucking up the stairs like a boss, that’s what!

She climbs about four more steps and without missing a clumsy beat, she reaches down and starts pulling up her underpants.  Her velocity slows slightly as she struggles to hoist her unmentionables back into place–which is awkward enough when you’re in the privacy of your own home–but how does a lady pull up her drawers without hiking up her dress to do so?  I have no idea, and I’m pretty sure she didn’t either.

Last I saw the Giant Pile of Laundry, I was passing her on the stairs as her pace slowed then stopped as she struggled to wrestle Victoria’s Secret back into place without allowing the hem of her dress to rise more than six-inches.

My advice to you, O’ Giant Pile of Laundry, stick to the velour track pants.


Just, wow.

Briefly coming out of retirement to share this gem with all y’all.

Dude is sitting in my usual spot this morning.  No big deal, I’ll just sit next to him (after he spins around and gets his foot off the seat).  He looks like a 1950’s KGB agent–more middle-aged than me, stocky, short dark hair, meaty face, and a frown.  Looks kind of like Tom Sizemore from Black Hawk down, but he’s wearing slacks and a pressed business shirt.  He’s got his Samsung Galaxy plugged into headphones, only one of which is plugged into his head.  The other is left dangling so I can enjoy the “music” he has to share with me and the other passengers on this cattle car.  Such a thoughtful little Komrad.


World’s Biggest Hoe-Down Fan

The sounds coming out of his headphones: I’ve never heard anything like it in all my life.  Sort of like the anti-Chipmunks.  It’s like he’s listening to 33’s on 45, but the voices aren’t sped up.  Everything is the same tempo–almost exactly–same beat, like that Hee-Haw railroad sounding music.  Boxcar Willie, Roy Clark, and Slim Pickins.  Oddly appropriate for my morning mode of transportation.

It keeps going and going, and I’m all “WTF, I gotta see what he’s listening to.”  I glance over but his thumb is obscuring the screen on his phone.  I can get a glimpse here and there, but not really sure what I’m seeing.  Is it some kind of party?  A wedding?  I can’t tell.  Looks like a bunch of people milling about in a gymnasium somewhere.

He moves his thumb and I can finally see that he’s watching–I shit you not–square dancing videos on Youtube, and he’s got it turned up to 11.  Once he’d exhausted his options on Youtube, he switched over to pure square dancing music on iTunes, and put it on repeat.  It’s relentless and loud.  Same horrible 2-minute “song” over and over again.

square dancilng

The Hoe Down: Crunk for White People.

You know what?  I think he’s actually studying the square dancing videos and “music”, as though he’s studying game films on Monday morning.  He’s tapping his foot, and totally into it.  I’m surprised he’s not taking notes.  I’m starting to think he’s the guy who actually busts out the square dance rhymes at the hoe down.

Deedle-deedle-bom-biddy,tak-a-wa-ka boo.

Biddle-widdle-ma-ka-wa-ka, him-ma-lima-loo.

Whack-a-doo-dee, Fiddle-faddle, lap-a-pack-a-poo.

Diddle-daddle, chubby-middle, Dink-a Link-a moo.

Full-blast, for a solid 60 minutes.  I’d be surprised if you said you didn’t hear it, too.  Is there a square dance competition in town this week?  Some kind of convention?  Is that Buck Owens over by the stairs?  Are there square dancing gangs?  Should we clear the streets of garbage cans and mailboxes in anticipation of the Great Square Dancing Riot of 2014?

I’m literally beside myself in disbelief and what I’m experiencing right now.  This music is SOOOOOO bad, it hurts.  I’m actually experiencing physical pain being near this noise.

That’s Not Asthma

Giant out of shape woman ran to catch the train and barely made it before we left. She is sitting just over there.

For a moment here, I thought I was going to need to pull the emergency stop lever because she was panting so hard. Sucking plenty of air, that run clearly kicked her ass: a hot sweaty mess with cat faces embroidered on her sweater.

Sitting with her friends now, she is carrying on a conversation and coughing periodically. She apologizes to her friends because of her asthma causing her to cough.

Ok. As a giant out of shape man, I can say with authority, this lady doesn’t have asthma. No inhaler in sight, and no legit asthmatic would be able to such that much air if they were having a bona fide attack, nor would their inhaler stay at home. No, this lady is just out of shape, old, and overweight. As somewhat of an authority in this area, I’ve been there, and like pornography to the Supreme Court, I know fat and out of shape when I see it.  I’ve had that same cough after running for the train as though my life depended on it.

Misrepresenting one’s choice to be tremendously overweight and out of shape as a life-threatening ailment, an ailment that you obviously do not have, is pretty lame. Asthma is pretty horrifying, and nothing to compare with simply being really out of shape. It’s the same when anyone elects to assign their own poor choices to some force outside of one’s control.

Failed high school? I’m sure it has nothing to with all the weed you smoked and homework you neglected. Let’s call that a learning disability. Nevermind people with actual learning disabilities who graduate high school every year.

Buried in credit card debt? Nothing to do with buying every trinket and trifle your heart desires, naturally. No, that’s got to be because someone stole your identity and is running around spending money like a drunken sailor. It has nothing at all to do with the three jet skis in the garage, the Mercedes in the driveway, or the beanie baby collection you just bought of eBay.

Why pick on Asthma Lady?  Because it grinds my gears to see people turning their own crummy habits and decisions into appeals for sympathy. Claiming a die medical condition when one does not exist is pretty scummy when your reason for doing so is to deflect the truth.

Was she seeking sympathy? Probably. Does she believe that she is really asthmatic? Probably not. Does she think she fooled anyone into believing her? Absolutely. Do I want to punch her in the face?  You bet.

Spy vs. Spy

Scarecrow and Momma Lovell went on a rant today about the mobs of people out there who demand to wear their burka (“a black sheet over their head, looking like a ghost”) while being photographed for their driver’s license.  Scarecrow made the point that driving is a privilege–a privilege!!–and if they won’t show their face for a driver’s license photo, they should ride a bike instead.  Scarecrow was concerned that they’d just need one ID they would share among all of them, since you couldn’t see their face.


The Dude abides.

Seems to me like it would be a lot easier to just drive around without a license (these are suspected terrorists, after all), but maybe people who wear burkas are the kinds of terrorists who want to make sure they’re in compliance with all the appropriate traffic laws, and they can’t get insurance without being licensed.  That’s probably the scam going on here.

Momma Lovell, in her true-Christian fashion, followed his lead and they frothed themselves up into some kind of KKK revival meeting. I hadn’t heard that much ignorant hate since I lived in Texas.  It was the black sheets vs. the white sheets in this conversation, and the black sheets were out numbered.

Now, while it does seem absurd to any rational human being to insist on having an ID photo taken while covering one’s face, it’s hardly some kind of epidemic terrorist conspiracy where the DOL is packed full of burka-covered women seeking their driver’s license.  So, go lay down some rat traps in your rat-shit covered basement and eat some oatmeal.

Commuter Haiku

My time has run very short these days, and I’ve necessarily abandoned my Sounder 1502 commuter blog of frustration for a time.  With the new schedule change on the train, I thought I’d mix it up a bit and bring you the same pleasure from my daily pain, but in a more compact and efficient form: the haiku.

(I can’t believe this wasn’t taken yet.)

In Other News

● Guy with bra-shaped sweat stain.
● Guy with Viagra theme as ringtone.
● Pile of laundry last had jury duty in 2003.
● John Coffee works for Metro Transit.

NEWS FLASH: The Lazy B is in it for the Money.

Ohhhhhhhh.  It’s a profit deal.

Yesterday The Scarecrow was talking about an all hands meeting at Boeing that he was required to attend that day.  Said it was about headcount.  As we all know, that kind of thing never turns out well.

This morning he reports that they’re laying off a few thousand people because of the 787 problems.  The Scarecrow shares the shocking realization the Boeing isn’t there to provide jobs, but to make money for shareholders.  Apparently this was the message he received at the big meeting, and was news to him.

It sucks getting laid off, particularly when the company has been mismanaged, though the shock and horror in The Scarecrow’s voice was more about entitlement and amazement that Boeing isn’t there to provide him a paycheck regardless of company performance. 

IMHO, Boeing has always been a layoff machine: feast or famine.  That anyone there still has the idea that they could work at Boeing uninterrupted for any length of time is pretty surprising.  It’s also surprising to hear the discussion turn to wonder about why Boeing has been steadily backing away from the unions in the PNW.

Whatever you believe, never believe your employer cares more about you than they care about money.  The people there may care about you, your boss probably cares a lot about you (hopefully), but the sad truth is that the company cares nothing about your mortgage, lifestyle, or vacation plans, Mr. Scarecrow.  I’m surprised that is so surprising.

No fucks are given when pocket lettuce is involved, and corporations are all about the salad. The math should be pretty easy once The Scarecrow finally gets to Oz and receives his brain.

In Sickness and in Health

Typhoid Mary is coughing up a lung this morning.

Someday This Will Be Me

Saw a really old, really small asian woman trying to buy a train ticket out of the pay phone on the platform.  So cute and sad at the same time.  I’m almost right there with her as far as my ignorance of fancy new technology goes.  Whaddayamean you start the car with a push-button?

Excuse Me…

I think the Loogie Hocking Zombie is writing a book.  He went out of his way today to ask a guy to take off his headphones and answer a bunch of questions about where he works, what he does, and why he doesn’t get off the train in Tukwila anymore.  Reminded me of a five year-old kid yanking on an adult’s sleeve at a dinner party to ask if the adult wants to look at the five year-old’s Pokemon collection.