You’ve been riding the subway for a few years now, and while you didn’t start off paying attention to your ride, it’s no so ingrained in your mind that you know the perfect subway car to board the train for your most efficient transfer. You know it well, down to the doors you want to get out at, and you’re proud of this bit of not secret, but earned knowledge. But now some rogue subway signmakers calling themselves the Efficient Passenger Project are putting up unauthorized signs telling any old jerk the best places to board if they’re transferring.
The signs were spotted by WNYC on the L train this week, and despite their attempts at being helpful and a thumbs-up from the Straphangers Campaign, they just feel all wrong. Surprisingly (for once) we agree with the MTA that an unforeseen consequence of signs like this could be people jamming up all in one spot like a bunch of dummies. So because of that, the authority said they’ll be removing the signs. That doesn’t seem to phase the EPP, who promise more signs.
Coming Soon pic.twitter.com/G5SjCEB9n3
— EPP NYC (@EPPNYC) February 11, 2014
Sure, we welcome something like an aid to predict where the doors will open, but that also doesn’t work every time, and is a natural outgrowth of subway behavior. This is feels too much like replacing earned knowledge with a cheap, quickie Matrix-like plugin. Efficiency and “lifehacks” sound good in the abstract, but there’s also something to be said for having to pay attention and actually learn something, as opposed to being spoonfed every goddamn secret to urban living there is. Plus, if you can’t impress people with your apocryphal knowledge, what are you supposed to fall back on, your sterling personality?