New Jersey Transit's "quiet car" program is good. By choosing the front or rear car of a commuter train during peak hours, you don't have to listen to obnoxious cell phone conversations. But what if someone breaks the rules?
The quiet car program was launched in September on a temporary basis, but was recently extended. And, it seems, some people are taking it far too literally. A New York Times reporter took a ride in the quiet car and found a bunch of adults who have reverted back to their glory days on the playground:
Excuse me," said the woman sitting across from them, raising her reading glasses, and then her voice. "This is the quiet car."
Mr. Arbeeny apologized and began whispering, which caused further agitation. The woman put down her book and summoned a conductor.
"They are not supposed to be talking," she said, wagging her index finger at the group.
When the conductor told the woman that the group had a right to speak quietly, she responded like any rational adult would: "What kind of sense does that make! Why would you allow them to have a sustained conversation in a quiet car, and why are you taking their side over mine!" Yeah. Another man was almost slapped with a "quiet card" by the conductor for talking on his phone. A quiet card! And there's more. The Times also found the biggest crybaby ever:
On Friday, one passenger asked a conductor if he could disable the automated announcements, which inform riders of impending stops, as well as the conductor's work radio, which he needed to stay in contact with the train's engineer. "It's unnecessary noise," the passenger said.
The conductor gave the passenger the silent treatment, moving away from him and whispering to no one in particular, "Why don't I just get this guy a pair of pajamas and a pillow."
The best piece of advice came from a commuter at the very end of the story: "If a particular car is too loud or intrusive, you can always move to another car."