Monday, March 30, 2009

Favorite stupid question...

I was filling out another one of those stupid security question things for some web-site account.  You know the ones; it's no longer enough to have your own user ID and password, the password has to be case-sensitive and contain a mix of numbers and letters, not rhyme with your user ID or your real name,  not be obscene or offensive to religious minorities residing in any of the out lying US territories...  

So of course I now put "1" on the end of all my passwords.  Yeah, that'll stop those hackers dead in their tracks.

Anyway, I now also have to have not one, but two security questions.  "City where you were born", "Favorite author", "Favorite restaurant", "First pet's name", "Favorite sexual position"...

I hate those.  It's none of their business.  Those are all personal things.  I don't talk to just anyone about those things.  But that's not what bothers me.

I usually lie about this, but to be honest... I don't have many favorites.  OK, I don't really have any I can think of.  I've always felt I'm missing something.  Everyone I know has a favorite everything.  A favorite color, song, band, book, movie... I don't even have a favorite pair of shoes!  I'm convinced there's something wrong with me and I've always been insecure about it. (as if don't have enough to be insecure about)

Of course the solution here seems simple enough.  I'll just pick something.  Easy right?  Except I keep forgetting what I picked.

This is pathetic, and not just a little ridiculous.  I'm being intimidated by HTML, or Flash or whatever.  A stupid website is coming damn close to bringing on an anxiety attack.  I don't need this shit.  I have real problems!  Real issues!  I have crap I want to buy online!

So, from now on I'm going with simple answers:  
Favorite (whatever) : Nothing.

No matter what the question my answer will be "Nothing" or "None".  So all you hackers out there that want to extend my subscription to Consumer Reports or change my preferences on Zappos... there you go.  I won't let an extra security measure get in the way of my self esteem! 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Next Stop... the wrong one.

Today was one of those long days.  It started too early and ran much to late.  It was supposed to be an easy day but that almost never happens.  That's not the problem though, the problem is how it ended.

I hate the NYC MTA.  That's a big surprise... Who doesn't?

We all know the usual complaints, and if you don't you can just check out the StrapHangers.  I'm talking about a personal complaint.  I'm actually convinced it's personal.  It happens to me so often, that I am quite certain the MTA is out to get me.

First, I need to say that I generally do like riding the subway.  I really do.  It's the "green" thing to do.  It's generally more convenient than driving.  And I love the semi-intimate people watching.  The subway is filled with people from every walk of life... So many characters, so many stories...

But enough of that!  I live off the "R" train line in Brooklyn.  Most of the time it's pretty reliable.  It's actually scheduled to arrive less often than the average line, but it is on time more often.  You figure it out.  

Today, however, it pulled it's regular trick.  I took the "N" express from Manhattan planning to catch the "R" local in Brooklyn to finish my trip home.

The platform was empty when we got to Brooklyn, a sure sign we had just missed an "R", but it's supposed to come every six minutes.  Six minutes go by... (another "N" comes) Four more minutes... (another "N")... a few more minutes... finally an "R".  The crowd is now about 10 deep on the platform and all 4,000 of us mange to cordially squeeze in just in time to hear the announcement that this "R" will be going express.

4,000 people groan and squeeze back off the train.  The doors close and a virtually empty train pulls away form the platform.

Apparently the logic is that if the "R" train is running late they send it express for a few stops to make up time.  The problem is, the further out you go the less people that need the damn "R" to run on time.  They drop 4,000 people back on the platform to await an express so they can hurry up and get the local train out to the 37 people waiting in Bay Ridge.  

How does that make sense?

I'm betting the real reason is that the conductor is nearing the end of their shift and they don't want him/her to be late so it's to hell with all of us.

And the good news is: The fare is about to go up again!

I'll be driven out of this city eventually, and it won't be by crime or the cost of living or over crowding.  It will be all the little things.