El driver, on a northbound Red Line train at Thorndale:

-Attention passengers. There is no southbound service at this station. You must board this northbound train and catch a southbound train at Loyola.

[Pause, a few people board.]

-Southbound passengers, hel-llllo? You must board a northbound train to Loyola and then go south.

[Pause, more people board.]

-Attention attention! Passengers on the platform waiting for a southbound train. You must board this northbound train.

[Some people remain obliviously on the southbound platform. Doors close. Train chugs forward.]

-I tried to tell ’em.

[Entire car cracks up.]

One stop later, where I live, at Granville:

-ATTENTION PASSENGERS GOING SOUTHBOUND. THERE IS NO SOUTHBOUND SERVICE AT THIS STATION. YOU MUST GO NORTH TO LOYOLA AND CATCH A SOUTHBOUND TRAIN.

[Pause. Everyone boards except one man.]

-EXCUSE ME, SIR? YOU IN THE BLACK COAT.

[Pause.]

-SIR IN THE BLACK COAT, TALKING ON THE CELL PHONE…

[Pause.]

-SIR THERE IS NO SOUTHBOUND SERVICE AT THIS STATION. YOU MUST BOARD THIS TRAIN.

[Amanda and I exit the train. Man in the black coat keeps talking on the cell phone, obliviously. I wonder what it’s like to have a public announcement aimed directly at you.]

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