THEJNSREPORT’S: NYC Subway Scene End of 2014
Welcome to THEJNSREPORT’S: Baby Strollers & Public Transportation
Recently, while riding the subway with a friend we found ourselves cloistered like sardines in a can in a crowded subway car where the interior of the car was blocked in two directions by women with SUV like baby strollers in the aisle reserved for standing passengers while they hogged two seats each with their bags.
Why is it in today’s world especially in NYC are there so many women having non-collapsable huge strollers for their kids? Firstly, I’m not against women and their kids traveling in public transportation, however common courtesy should not just be a matter of everyone else acquiescing to the choices some parents decide to make when transporting their kids.
Non collapsing baby strollers are a huge public nuisance. They are constantly in the way, take up too much space and impede any bit of wiggle room left when the bus or train car is full of passengers. When I was growing up as a kid and yes I have plenty of siblings, we didn’t have the monster sized SUV strollers of today. Common sense prevailed. In today’s world it seems like things are backwards.
Welcome to THEJNSREPORT’S: Jury Duty Episode 2.5
I call today’s post episode 2.5 due to the fact that I’m 2.5 days into serving jury duty and am actually pleased with the way it’s been working out thus far.
Initially, like most people when I saw the summons for last Friday, I was like oh crap!!! Not being too much a morning person, the idea that I’d have to actually get up and go early during rush hour to court was not my idea of a fun or an ideal situation, especially with how jury duty has worked out for me in the past.
I never forgot those long days of just sitting there waiting to hear your name called from among the pool of people there. Well as a law-abiding citizen I answered my summons and went. Day 1 ( yesterday) started out in typical fashion. I arrive at the courthouse, go through metal detection, and then have to surrender my camera to the police officer until the end of the day.
You would have thought this cop had never seen a camera before the way he gushed over it. Every other word out his mouth was an”Oh boy!” and “let me give you a receipt, I know you don’t wanna forget this”. It was almost to the point where I looked at him sideways like is he planning on jacking my shiznit? You best believe I scrutinized the receipt carefully for any errors in the description written on the receipt before proceeding to the jury room.
I sit for several hours before my name is called. Lucky day!!! Once inside the room that myself and several others were summoned to, a court employee in charge of gathering jury pools told us that sometimes they have cases that get done in a single day. I found that hard to believe.
I smiled at the thought of serving one day and being done with service for several more years…perfect! Well, due to the fact that several hours passed since the typical 9am start time, we were told that we would have to come back the following morning for the case to start.
Whoo hoo!!! since we weren’t going to be utilized that day we were free to go for the rest of the day. I wanted to give that court employee a high-five!! Before Stephen A. Smith could say “quick, fast, and in a hurry”, I was gone.
That ladies and gentlemen is what you call the Get Away.
Day 2 began with me rushing with rush hour’s masses from the bus to the train which was packed full of the typical selfish idiots who don’t move all the way into the train cars but block the doors.
I managed to squeeze into an express train just in time to see the hapless people oblivious to what rush hour means, standing on the escalators blocking both sides, appearing with sad faces as the doors closed behind those of us who rushed up the stairs to catch the train.
For some reason today the trains weren’t moving quite the way I’d have liked especially for rush hour on an express train but I managed to make it to the courthouse a few minutes after the 8:50am call time.
Today I decided to leave the camera at home and once inside the court and in the room we were to gather we were greeted by the same court employee from the day before who then proceeded to tell us that the case wasn’t ready for today and would start tomorrow.
Ladies and Gentleman, there is a God!!! God worked it out so good that we were given two options. Option A) stay with the rest of the jury pool for the day where we might be placed on another case. Or Option B) Leave for the day with full attendance credit and return same time tomorrow for this one day trial. Oh I almost forgot with the option of staying you could also end up still having to come back the following day anyway.
You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know which option I selected. Attendance was taken and those of us who elected to leave for the day were gone.
Stay tuned for day 3…
Welcome to THEJNSREPORT’S: The Selfish Part II
In the last post on this subject, I was optimistic that my appeal for more selflessness vs selfishness would have some impact. Ladies and gentlemen, in this 2013 “year of our lord” I give to you evidence yet again that we have much more work to do. In a joint collaboration cross over project with FrozenRope Photography.wordpress.com we present this artistic take on how comic like we are as human beings. I give you Photo Effects II: The Selfish Part II
All Images are the property of PalindromePhotography.wordpress.com (c)2013
Welcome to THEJNSREPORT’S: Privacy…Do you mind?
Written by T.D Moody
I’ll be the first to admit that I happen to love technology. Not all of its incarnations and variants but mostly the most beneficial and time-saving devices and gadgets that can and often times does make life a bit easier and/or simpler. Advances in medical procedures and anesthesiology, the computers and robots used for advanced and complicated surgeries are some examples.
That being said after reading a few articles on the upcoming “Google Glass” I have no doubt that privacy is being dealt another death-blow with devices as powerful as the early impressions of Google Glass come forth by techies, supporters, and detractors alike.
Years ago while reading some tech content I remember seeing it said that the technology available to the average consumer is actually 50 years or more behind what’s actually possible now and that the technology is suppressed and doled out in piece meal installments for several reasons.
One of these reasons and probably the most obvious is profits. Each iteration of a new “hi-tech” device comes with some modest upgrades but is still far less than what’s actually possible yet people will want the upgrade and continue to chase and pay for the progression. I think that’s a natural part of mankind to want to keep getting better and wanting more, and more, and more.
I think back to my days as a kid playing video games on Coleco Vision (for those old enough to remember it) at a friend’s place before Atari and Nintendo came on the scene. Then came the Sega Master System followed by Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo. Each system boasted technological upgrades and games that improved on performance and graphic displays. Game play and overall execution of games was the stronghold of Nintendo for years over even the Sega Genesis.
This was due in large part to the fact that while Genesis sported better specs and graphics performance from a 16 bit system versus an 8 bit Nintendo, Nintendo’s games were better thought out more developed, more rewarding, and challenging than Genesis games which were merely eye candy with little substance in terms of game play and endings.
Today it’s XBox 360, PS3 (PS4 coming soon), and PC gaming. How times have changed. Did I mention even the privacy policies of the current gaming consoles are lengthy, wordy, and essentially basically state the system can spy on you through your agreed use of it and agreeing to its terms of service policy. Playing games online, links to accounts it’s everywhere.
Now with the news of the upcoming release of Google Glass mixed reviews are coming in where privacy comes to the forefront and is in the spotlight like never before with the availability of social media and instant uploads and sharing.
One doesn’t have to see the potential for abuse and more secretive spying into the lives of ordinary people where we are all the reporters and the reported. When given technology without the restraints and safeguards to respect and protect personal privacy, there is no place left where anything is private. Every conversation had can recorded in one’s own home. Willing surveillance of one’s every move is possible and treated as some simple novelty or toy and nothing more.
Knowing people are people and will push any boundaries or limits in front of them when there is no restraint is good enough reason to view this technological advance with trepidation. Is it true that every one wants to be a celebrity? I don’t believe so but with Google Glass and it’s sure to come successors and competitors, the potential to turn every one into a “celebrity” is real whether wanted or not. It’ll be like “Smile” your on the Net” , “Smile your on the toilet and we all can see your …ewww!!! In real-time.”
Now with seemingly random killings in unsuspected areas popping up all over, a social climate is emerging in which it is becoming an accepted norm in order to “feel safe” to surveil everything and everyone and some how no privacy = security. In actuality it equals total enslavement. NO FREEDOM. History is repeating itself and most of us are happily, blissfully, distracted with gadgets and toys that spy on us even more so than having a soldier quartered in our own homes.
Google Glass seems benign on the surface as it’s just being introduced, but isn’t that the way all things start out? Small, a seed, baby step after baby step in progression until it reaches it’s fullness and we’re all staring at each other in disbelief at the horrors we collectively allowed to grow and fall upon us. Orwellian depicted Police States rising all over the world in the name of “Peace and Security” is very frightening and very real.
Educating ourselves and not being so caught up in the bells and whistles of the latest gadgets and gizmo’s to the point of being willfully ignorant is crucial. It seems the more tech dependent we become and the more surveillance we accept, the easier it becomes to see the invisible bars and prisons we’re all in. Very much like in the movie “The Matrix”
If this seems too unreal and far fetched, I suggest going around the city and counting the number of surveillance cameras that are openly displayed in public. From the subway stations, to the new buses that have cameras all throughout, to buildings inside and out. Then consider how many satellites there are watching us from the sky and the advanced real-time capabilities of GPS. Is it really that difficult to believe or are we “tuning it out” and refusing to see what’s in plain sight?
Mini computers that can monitor our every movement will be marketed as the newest “Hi-tech” advance that should be embraced without resistance or questioning of its true purpose and/or potentials. How I want to wake from this nightmare. The president’s speech on U.S. government authorized drone strike policy is somehow supposed to instill confidence in authorized killings of any target deemed “terror suspect” or “person of interest”.
To me that’s like saying,”Anyone can be considered is a potential terrorist or extremist when they question the policies and actions of government.” “We need to go over to this country and kill 200 people because according to our records these people are classified and approved as terrorist groups and extremists with links to weapons of mass destruction.” How do we confirm these classifications is there any oversight?
I remember President Obama in one of his re-election campaign speeches saying not that we the American people needed “Smaller” Government as our nation’s founders intended but “Smarter” Government like those hideous and frightening IBM ads popping up all over the place as if they are improving the world for people.
Everything is happening the way it is for a reason it is no coincidence. America is at a crossroads this is true as President Obama said in his speech, but the future nation being left to the children of tomorrow is nothing more than a stolen future and guarantee of enslavement. I fear being older and living to see the younger generations of today and tomorrow looking back in history at my generation and the generations before mine that are responsible for their future.
President Obama tells us the future of terrorism is home-grown and foreign. No one is safe. Problem…Reaction…Solution. Game Over. “Oversight?” What Oversight? There is supposed to be in place already the traditional checks and balances in government. Obfuscating the main issue with spin and word play is in my mind an inexhaustible skill being utilized again and again in speeches to assure us that the Government is actually doing things that will help us, the People.
Welcome to THEJNSREPORT’S: Sidewalk & Staircase Etiquette 101
For the purposes of this report I am finally touching on an invaluable social etiquette that I feel has fallen by the wayside and it must be mentioned. Sidewalk and Staircase etiquette may seem like at first glance to be a common sense everyone possesses.
However, I’ve come to the conclusion that the selfishness of people has gotten to a point where even the simplest of social gestures that is so important to the well being of communities and cities at large to functioning in a proper fashion, has eroded to a point to where it can lead to violence and bad intentions of one person to another and that action spreading like a plague world wide. Just the other week I was watching the news and heard mention of a subway rider being shoved onto the train tracks and was killed by the oncoming train. Why do things like that happen?
If you’re reading this and still following me let’s go further now into what I’m speaking to. Case in point, in Europe the flow of traffic flows opposite of that here in the Western Hemisphere. Cars drive on the left side of the road in alternate north/south or east/west directions.
They have the steering wheel of the car on what is the passenger side of a car built for the North American car market. Do we ever wonder why that is? Driving here in the U.S. cars drive on the right side of the road alternately in whatever direction one is headed. The flow of traffic has a specific purpose.
It is the same for people when walking on sidewalks and up and down staircases be they in buildings or subways. We are people and walking on the sidewalk however much one might feel it is their personal runway or catwalk, is public use and as such has tacit and implicit if not unwritten rules that say be conscious of your fellow woman/man.
One of my biggest peeves with people while out in public aside from the selfish behavior I witness on subways and buses is the idea that walking opposite the flow of foot traffic is wise and should not be met with resistance, anger or frustration. I blame Sex and the City partly for this. In the ads and promos of Sex and the City you see the girls walking four wide down the streets of New York as if they are the only people on the street.
In the real New York City this can’t be tolerated. There are too many people trying to emulate that scene as if it’s the norm. If say you are walking with three other people on a sidewalk that has enough room for four people two on each side of the sidewalk walking in opposite directions comfortably, common sense says that you should only walk four wide if there is really no traffic coming back in the opposite direction.
Yet daily I witness “geniuses” walking taking up the entire sidewalk as if they are royalty or the only people deserving of pavement. Exhibit A below. Notice the four people to the right of the picture. Then notice the person to the far left walking against the flow of traffic. While there are no people at this time coming in the opposite direction, if there was someone coming in the opposite direction there would be a confrontation unless someone yielded the right of way. In my experience usually the person who is in the wrong thinks that the person with the right of way should be the one to acquiesce.
We have to do better as a society in how we interact with and treat one another. Clearly lack of respect for others goes around all day and all night. On escalators there is another common sense etiquette that has seemingly been forgotten. If you are a lazy, unaware, or just physically unfit person who can’t walk up the stairs or escalators, standing to the right hand side of the escalator is essential in order to allow people who want to get past to go on their way without having to wait behind someone who has no interest in getting to where they are going as quickly as some others would.
And lastly, just as I stated about the flow of traffic earlier, on the staircase it follows the same principle. Going up (if it’s the only staircase available) the stairs on the right hand side and allowing the left hand side for opposite direction traffic flow is common sense. I’ve seen it where people refuse this basic courtesy leading to shoving and yelling matches between people. This is especially true in the subways. We can’t all get along without the use and practice of respect and common sense for one another.
Till next time this has been another report by THEJNSREPORT. Also coming soon new food adventures.