while i think it's kind of the MTA (and that's the closest they'll ever get to a compliment from me) to offer a $2 "bonus" for every 10 dollars you put on your metrocard, it can also be a bit of a nuisance. sure, its a free ride on the subway. but when one is using that metrocard solely for a different mode of transport (i.e., the express bus, to get to their parents house where they had to flee to because their inCOmpeteNt elEctricity proviDer still has not managed to restore the power in their neighborhood after 4 stinking days.) that extra $$ on the card usually winds up going unused, and one day you suddenly find you have about 35 $2 metrocards swimming around in your pocketbook. meaning that you could have bought a new pocketbook with all that metrocard money. so this evening, in an attempt to be smart and thwart the system, i put $23 dollars on one of those miscellaneous $2 cards in my bag, thereby making it exactly what i needed for five trips to and fro Staten Island. or so i thought. when my metrocard popped out of the machine, it turned out, with my $2 per $10 bonuses, i now was the proud owner of a card worth $29.60. how on earth am i going to spend that 60 cents? i can't, unless in the future i put another amount with 40 cents on it, however with the $2 bonuses, i am certain it won't ever wind up equalling a full dollar. sigh. i know i'm not a math scholar, but it shouldn't take this much work to figure out how not to be wasteful with your transportation card.
while i'm on the topic of transportation, i'd like to relay an amusing experience i had while waiting for the bus the other day. it was brutally hot out, and i was waiting at a stop on broadway. i suppose to torture new yorkers, near most local/express bus stops along broadway they also have stops for tour buses, so the tour bus can block the bus lane so your bus drives past you, and so the tourists can tumble out and engulf you and pester you with questions while you're waiting there minding your own business. mind you, i'm bitter enough already when it comes to those red tour buses, since i've been promised numerous "lets play tourists and ride the bus" day dates by men in my past, and i've yet to be taken on one. i suppose the same thing about me that says "this girl would like a tour bus date" is also the same thing that screams "end this relationship before you do". but still.
so i digress. so i'm already bitter towards the old red bus, and here i see not one, but two gliding over into the right lane, to pull over about 2 ft. away from where i'm standing. so i'm all wrapped up in my own world, griping in my head about how my bus better not pass me by while these tour buses are hogging up the street and WHY on earth anyone would want to visit NYC in July...its so repulsive here in the summer. don't the guidebooks warn against that?? they should. so suddenly my cranky reverie was interrupted by someone yelling "water! get cold water here!" i looked over to my left, and beyond the swarm of tourists waving their maps around and stepping on and off the bus was a man selling water. exciting, right? why did i waste your time with this story? well, he was selling water to the upper deck of the bus, via a wooden pole with a claw/bucket contraption on top that was holding a bottle of water in its woody grasp. i was absolutely amazed watching the spastic mid-air exchange of the bottle from the pole into the outstretched hands of the people on the bus who then placed their dollar into the little cup/claw. he did it again and again and again, supplying water to every thirsty tourist on that level of the bus, probably cashing in more that hour than i make in a week. ingenious!