I wasn’t going to post anything today, but, since I missed the 4:01 train, and the 4:31 train is a few minutes delayed, low and behold, I have some time on my hands.
My story begins at the Long Branch station. The land where people who commute call Toronto, real estate agents call “New Toronto”, disenchanted Hamiltonians call “Vape Central” and people who live in the cesspool of germs that is Toronto proper call Etobicoke.
There aren’t any Lilliputians to contend with, so there’s actually a bench for me to sit on.
I wonder where my little buddies have gone to, then I notice this sign:
The Canadian National Exhibition, CNE for short, is a two week fair that marks the unofficial end to summer.
At the CNE, or “the Ex” or “Land of Creepy Clowns” (read about this phobia in a future post) you can eat food you’d never combine, buy things you never did need, watch shows you’d never pay to see, play carnival games you’ll never win at, and go on rides you’d never see pass a safety test at Disney World.
“Where do I sign up?!!”
Sounds like a big bag of fun, wrapped up in one deep fried poutine corn dog.
No, I did not make that up and yes I still want to go.
I’m a huge joinee after all.
I invented that word today, now please spread it around.
The CNE—It’s a tradition. And I think in this day and age, when it’s easy to watch life on a screen, we should keep some things sacred.
So, there I am, sitting on my perch (fit for Lilliputians, remember?) which is adjacent to the Ticket window.
I’m impressed as I see an unprecedented two Customer Service Ambassadors.
I hope people realize this level of service is the exception.
With nothing but time on my hands, I overhear some rather peculiar Customer questioning. I can’t hear what our friendly CSAs have responded back, so I took the liberty of paraphrasing the appropriate response to the actual questions.
Q: “Does the 4:30 train really leave at 4:30?”
A: “I dunno, are you really a moron?! Sorry about that. One can never tell with Go Transit! What is time, anyway? If you had a salaried gig, this wouldn’t be an issue.”
Q: “Is track 2 the one in the middle there?”
A: “Yes, there are 3 tracks at this station. Track 2 typically is placed in between 1 and 3, much like how your husband is in the middle between you and his mistress.”
Q: “Is it the same price for me to get off at BMO field, uh, I mean Exhibition than at Union?!”
A: “Are you looking for someone? They are waiting for the REAL 4:30! Does cost matter anyway?!! I’m gonna charge you 3 bucks just for opening your pie hole. Did you think that a trip from Exhibition to Union station, the busiest station in Canada, should be of no cost to you?!! There’s no such thing as a free lunch, and there’s no such thing as a free train ride, either.”
Q: “So, I want to buy a return from Exhibition and then an additional one way from Exhibition back here. Can I do that?”
A: “Do we not crucify you enough for taking public transit?!! Why are you trying to pay for someone else? They obviously had enough money to go without you. If I were you, I wouldn’t return the favour. And I’d buy a new tie.”
Q: “I’m going to ask you (one hand on hip, one hand waving her finger) where do YOU think I should park?!! There’s absolutely NO parking at this station! I had to pay $10 just to park at the legion! Where should I be parking?!”
A: “Here’s an idea. If you paid $10 just for parking, why didn’t you just drive?! Why are you yelling at me when you’ve obviously mismanaged the pension?!? Don’t you see this is my vocation in life? Don’t you think I suffer enough?!”
I think I nailed it.