This is actually what I had planned to write about before my upcoming-events excitement took hold of my blog.
It's a great thing if you're physically fit enough to handle it.
My commute today was going as usual...walk to Metro, rush to oncoming train at expense of woman-in-front-of-me's heels, getting thrown around inside train car due to driver's inability to... drive. Et cetera.
When I got to my destination, even the dark and cavernous station seemed normal. Until I realized it was a little too dark.
Being an adaptable gal who eats her carrots, I peered around for the ticket turnstile, and once I found it I slid my SmarTrip Card across the reader (that was easy!) and proceeded to....well, the escalator,
but what looked more like what the army likes to call a "cluster fuck."
With about 200 people being offloaded every 2 minutes, it's already enough that we only have two moving escalators in the direction of commute. And if for some reason--say, typical mechanical failure--we're all relegated to only one moving escalator, it's like the LA-Ventura Freeway at the 1-405 interchange. But replace those metal boxes and empty-threat horn blows with real people and real evil eyes.
That being said, I'm sure you can imagine what it was like this morning to see not only all escalators at a stand still, but only one of them available for the up direction. Essentially what we had was one hell of a staircase on our hands.
Enter: mass confusion and wheezing.
What I saw was absolutely hilarious and disgusting at the same time.
For me, the 200-step climb was a breeze. Even on fully-functioning days I don't just "ride" the escalator, I "walk" it, and today people like myself were finally recognized for their daily efforts: we made it out of Bethesda station with nary an aberrant breath, nor droplet of sweat on brow or bosom.
I wish I could say the same for my fellow commuters.
People were stopping, coughing, bitching, panting, gasping, gulping, squawking, heaving, and choking--mostly for air--and I seriously thought some of them were going to faint. There were a lot of innocent "phew"s and a lot more of their expletive counterparts. And there was no feeling of pulling through this uphill battle together. It was every commuter for himself.
Just to make myself feel good, I walked back down to the bottom and made a second ascension. I actually think I lapped some folks.
Beyond my own personal amusement and eduction, what I saw was very disturbing in a broader sense.
Thankfully this occured on a regular day, but what if it we had to get to the top because of an emergency? Many out-of-shape bodies would be laid to waste...either from the disaster at hand or the no-rest-stop climb itself.
I think today's Metro mishap exposed more than just a pudgy midriff:
some people definitely have to reevaluate their lifestyles.
If not for their own well-being, then for that of our homeland security.