Tuesday, November 30, 2010

ups and downs

one side of two overheard phone conversations made by the same person:

"i'm on the bus."

"you said last night to be there at 8." (it was 8:10 at the time.)

"so you already got someone else?"

"aww, man."

same person about twenty mintues later:

"this is [person's name]. can you see if there's any mail for me." (said in completely unfamiliar tone, as to an sro attendant, though that's just me speculating.)

"oh, there is.  who's it from?"

"can you open it?"

"yeah, what does it say?"

"oh, that's great.  thanks so much."

walk buttons

when you take public transportation, you tend to walk (or bike or skateboard or otherwise self-propel) more than when you drive.  after all, buses and trains won't take you right to your door, so you have to get yourself there from the stop.  sometimes, you even have to cross streets, which forces you to encounter something like this.

you also get to see lots of other people encountering such things.  in the past several years, i've noticed a huge increase in number of people who love to mash the buttons repeatedly until the sign changes.  perhaps it makes them feel better, but i'm fairly certain we have yet to deploy urgency-aware walk buttons widely anywhere in the world.  but, then again, i don't believe psychics either.  in any case, here's a walk button for all those button-mashers out there.

top picture taken from flickr user PappyV
bottom picture taken from flickr user ...every.seven...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


i'm not generally a fan of pigeons.  in larger urban settings, they spread disease, they remind me of how wasteful my fellow humans are and my neighbor was feeding a bunch that decided to relocate to my roof after he stopped feeding them.  i suppose if i saw them in the wild rather than scavenging, things might be different.  despite all of that, i still appreciated the following site.

that's right, a whole flock of pigeons in a feeding frenzy.  it's not too often you get to see any kind of feeding frenzy in the big, bad city (families crowded around ice cream trucks don't count).  but i believe this frenzy happens daily.  if you can place it and time it, you'll see three loaves of bread disappear almost as fast as they can be crumbled and spread.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


one thing i definitely see more of on public transit than the other parts of my life are elaborate manicures.  do the (mostly) ladies sporting these fine gems have an iphone?  hmm-mmm.  clicking on them touchscreens with nails don't register, you feel me?  only smartphones with physical buttons for these fine folks.  i was hopin to get a picture of one set i saw the other day.  while i'm sure there would have been no objection, i only noticed the manicure as this woman was getting off the bus and i didn't want to make her late.  so, here's a series of pictures to help give a visual.  the base color was something like this:
i think it's called "magenta foil."  the length of these nails is best illustrated by this next picture.

and while the nails i saw didn't have lace, there were jewels -- no color, longer and thinner than the ones shown here and arranged in (if memory serves correct) a six pointed star.

i have no idea if the ladies (again, mostly ladies) who do this are tryin to make a stranger's day, but sometimes, they do.