Wednesday, 1 May 2013

A crippled sense of empathy

Admittedly, that title could apply to me, but in this case it does not.  We're all accustomed, no matter how much we hate to see it, with the selfish wankers we call our fellow commuters pretending not to see heavily pregnant ladies and giving up their seats for them.  I have to admit, though, that last night's journey home gave me something new...

Edgware Road Bakerloo Line tube station is one of those deep ones that's served by lifts.  Two, huge, clunky, and slooooow lifts.  Normally, I take the stairs because of this (at least going down), but yesterday I was feeling lazy.  I came to the lifts to find one of the lifts was just departing - the door was closed.  Around 15-20 people had already started queueing at the other one.  But the first lift had not yet departed!

The reason for this soon became plain: a man on crutches had gotten one of those crutches caught in the closing door.  He was unable to get them out, though he was frantically trying.  The lift was prevented from departing.  Despite this, the crowd of people waiting for the second lift merely stood by and watched him.  And let's remember that the second lift had not arrived yet, so helping him would not have made them miss their lift, even if we granted that this was a good enough reason not to help a fellow human being in trouble.

And despite the fact that the first, full, lift was prevented from departing by this, not one person in that lift bothered to help either.  Not one.  Nor did anyone inside the lift pus the alarm button, nor anyone waiting for the second lift call to a station guard for help.

Instead, I had to shoulder my way through them all, drop the several bags I was holding, stick my hands into the crack in the lift doors and use my not inconsiderable weight to wrench the door open enough for the man to get his crutch out.

Now, I'll grant you that the only possible way this man got his crutch stuck in the first place was by shoving it into a closing door to try and hold it open long enough for him to enter, which makes him a stupid prick, but I am astounded by the callousness of everyone else in that station at approximately ten past five yesterday afternoon.  You know who you are, and I fervently hope that you're one day stuck in a situation where no-one will help you either.  Twats.

Anyway, moving on: the tube was one minute late.  This caused me to miss my connecting train to Hersham, so I got next one.  It was four minutes late - three within TfL's network.  Overall, this made me 29 minutes late against my TfL Journey Planner advised time of arrival for £72.50.

This morning, the train from Hersham to Waterloo was one minute early.  It didn't let me get an earlier tube, and the tube I took was two minutes late.  Another £5.

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