Friday, 18 November 2011

Train theatre

Ok, train company. Can we just stop pretending now? Frankly, the storyline that the evening train is going to arrive at 18:41 is simply not believable. You might as well just be honest and say that you have absolutely no idea when the damned thing is likely to arrive. Not enamored with the theatre metaphor? Let's try science instead.

If my students submit a report with statistics, it is expected that the numbers include a standard error of the mean (usually indicated by +/-). In your case, the arrival time is always accompanied by a +. This indicates that you are actually misrepresenting the true time at which the train arrives.

In the last few weeks*, my T,W,Th, Fri journeys have gone something like this:

25/10 14 mins late
26/10 24 mins late
27/10 on time (anomalous)
28/10 22 mins late (on hour earlier train)
1/11 8 mins late
8/11 10 mins late (am train)
9/11 30 mins late (this was on 17:22 start, which involved 2 delays and a sprint to have doors slammed in my face on connection)
10/11 29 minutes late
11/11 ~10 mins late (I'd stopped caring by end of week)
15/11 I forgot to look
16/11 trains *CANCELLED* after waiting for 2 hours at the station, Train Buddy drove us. (More on this in a forthcoming post).
17/11 10 mins late
18/11 morning train 11 late (and short 2 carriages), evening train 14 minutes and counting as I type.

*missing dates indicate days on which I was so fed up that I arranged to work from home.

Let's hope next week is better. Perhaps we might aim for 1-2 days of on-time service before December, when we can fully expect snow or leaves to shut the rails down altogether.

-Apologies to my dear readers for the complete lack of humor lately. I'm too annoyed and tired to even try to find the funny in this.

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