The DC metro is an efficient way to get around—certainly much better than braving its crowded and unpredictable streets. But at rush hours it’s also a dense mess of overtired, overworked zombies rushing to the office. These guys are metro masters—just watch and learn the fastest way to force your way up an escalator, and just how long after the warning bell you can keep cramming into the cars.
It’s just one big hot mess. It’s convenient, but it’s not exactly fun.
But there’s this one metro employee who does train announcements. He’s just incredible. I know it probably sounds ridiculous to use the word “incredible” for metro announcements … but you haven’t heard this guy.
The first thing you notice as you step onto his train is that you can clearly understand every word he says. The second is that, hey, this guy is using full sentences. Not a huge deal, but it’s a welcome break from jarbled messages you can’t understand “Next ^$&#*-op is %#*($#@,” and the ones too tired to bother with verbs: “Chinatown.”
“Good morning metro customers. The next stop is Chinatown. Doors will open on the left.”
Hey now. That’s what I’m talking about.
But that’s not all. What really makes this guy special is that he has fun with it. Fun? With rush hour metro announcements? Yeah, I know. Crazy.
But he does it anyway.
Sometimes he gets a little edge, like we’re between songs on a soft jazz station—“Your next station this morning, Chinatowwwwwn. Doors, left siiiiide.” One of my coworkers is conviced he really used to be a dj (yes, we talk about this guy).
And sometimes he even gets a little snarky, adding an over-the-top French accent to L’Enfant Station and reminding us that, “It is Cherry Blossom Festival time—large groups, you can enter the metro train through separate doors. You will not lose your groups. Just remember where you’re getting off.”
He always makes me smile. Even if I haven’t had nay coffee yet. Heck, we’re all smiling.
This is all well and good, but why have I made this guy an obsession? He reminds me that you can bring joy and creativity to any work. And that these qualities are contagious.
So rock on, metro announcer guy. You brighten our mornings, and we love you for it.