Thursday, December 20, 2007

are we so service oriented?

I used to think so, but maybe customer goods and services have been reduced to just goods, but without the services? Traditionally, the US has been known for their "customer is always right" mind set, and nearly every sector of the job market has strived to accommodate the desires of their customers. Over the past several years I've noticed a sharp decline in the quality of services provided, but right now I'm going bitch about the MTA.

Like thousands of other people, I ride the NYC subway every day. Time and time again, I stand waiting for my train and think, what a dump. There is no excuse for NYC to have such a putrid, stink hole excuse for a subway system when many other prominent American cities have beautiful ones. This city represents America to a lot people who visit here from other countries, and what a message it must send. We live in a city full of artists, and we could easily beautify the stations with volunteer projects or urban design competitions... yet the ceilings are deteriorated and black, rats squeak and nibble on garbage that floats in puddles of rancid water, and filth radiates from all directions.

When I moved to the city only a few months ago, I was faced with familiarizing myself with what lines to take, when I could take them, and which ones would get me there the fastest. I also had to (and still have to) figure out when certain trains stop running (late nights and weekend schedules)... One thing that I regularly feel upset about is the lack of subway directions for the public. I still get angry when I get on a train and it's packed... I want to verify something on the MTA map, and I find that one of the two maps that are typically provided are not there, or the train is so packed that I cannot reach the map. Time and time again, I look up above the doors and think, you know, I pay what, 78 bucks or something every 30 days to ride the subway, and I would really like to look up and see a damn subway map... instead I see poorly designed ads (ad space which I assume takes precedence over rider services) ranging from dental services, to Bud Lite ads, to ESL language schools. What my issue is, is what the hell does the MTA spend their massive budget and revenues on that they can't reserve those spaces above the doors for stop maps, which would serve their customers greatly?! Hell, a huge population of people in this city are tourists, and they have no idea where they're going.. wouldn't it make sense?

For anyone who's ever been to Paris, you would immediately recognize where I'm coming from. Paris's metro system has an easy to read, eye level directory at every junction and turn along the way to the train.. complete with directional arrows. Each train features either a map above the doors or a map not unlike the lit up map you see on the new N and green line trains. To make things even clearer for metro riders, often one will find another directory.. a nice, basic, large one right on the wall ( at every outlet on the platform) listing the train's stops.

It seems so simple, and yet, I feel that the MTA doesn't put the rider's convenience on the top of their list of priorities.. We're given "report cards" to fill out our opinions on train service, but are New Yorkers so accustomed to being inconvenienced and poorly serviced that they just don't expect anything more?

Well it really ticks me off. grrr....


Di Mackey said...

You should send that letter to them ...over to revamp their 'service'.

Did you hear, it was so cold in Antwerp yesterday, and there was so much pollution, that ice formed on the dirt in the sky and came down as 'snow' ... bloody bloody. It's gross.

Managed to do the lounge but we did wish for you and your beautiful interior design ideas more than once xo

Mlle said...

Yes, Mayor Bloomberg should get a letter from me. I love him, but I think this issue is way beyond him, or any one person.

I read your blog about the polluted snow.. sounds gross, but I'm just becoming more cynical and desensitized to pollution these days..

I miss you miss Mackey. Would have loved to lug book shelves and red couches across your home with you... soon enough dear.


Di Mackey said...

We hope you like what we've done :) if not then yes, lugging is an option. I should post the new look lounge.

Off buying all the Christmas stuff ... imagine that, last minute eh wot ;)

Missing you too, Ms Moyer ... take good care and a few million hugs from all of us in the polluted city xx