Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Traveling to Bronx Science

Riding the 4 train back in 2002.

Usually, I'm not impressed with the New York Times' Metro section, but I'm actually impressed with this series: exploring the different ways people get to work and school by actually traveling with them, by subway, walking, driving, tram, etc.

When I saw the words "Bronx Science" and "Long Ride" in the headline, I thought they decided to write about riding the Gagnon (some Sciencites called it something else, though), the yellow school bus service bringing kids from the five boroughs (or four, really, I don't think they serviced Staten Island) to the number 2 science high school in the city. The parents who wanted their kids to take the bus had to pay for it. Instead, Fairbanks wrote about the express bus. I've never actually been on an express bus, I know you have to buy a different kind of unlimited Metrocard if you intend to take the express bus, because it costs $3 more than the average pay-per ride. I knew one kid who took the express bus after he moved to Long Island (haha). He said the seats were nicer and there were no transfers, which was nice. I myself had to transfer twice on the MTA because the Bronx is out of the way. I'd take the F to the R at Queens Plaza (later, after the V train was created, I had to transfer at Roosevelt Avenue, which messed up my sleeping-on-the-train schedule), and then from the R to the 4 at 59th Street. The trip took about an hour and a half, which made it a three-hour round trip. And I'd stay late many nights working on the yearbook. After getting home at midnight, I'd do my homework and then have to wake up at 6 a.m. the next day and start it all over again. But if you missed the express bus, you were fucked and had to resort to the lovely MTA.

And after doing that for 4 years, any other commute seems easy. Forty-five minutes to Eugene Lang and the Brooklyn Rail office? No problem at all.

Though, it would've made for a better story if they found the lone Staten Islander who goes to Bronx Science. There was one kid like that when I was at Science and he had to take the Staten Island Ferry twice a day. I thought that was a cool commute. I wonder how long that would take, though.

1 comment:

Petrockstar said...

This all reminds me of my commute from the suburbs to downtown San Diego in high school!