The Webcomicker

Who watches the watchmen?

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Best Con Sketch. EVER.

David Willlis is a man who can feel my pain. From Shortpacked.

This is probably one of those "You had to be there" sort of jokes, but let me just tell you that everything in this comic is the absolute truth. If I had to pick one thing about the San Diego Comicon that sucked it would be the freaking San Diego trolley "service".

My hotel was maybe five miles from the con, but it was three different trolley lines to get there. First I had to catch the Green line, then hop to the Blue Line, and finally get on the Orange line. And of course, none of these lines have any semblance of coordination, so you end up waiting for at least fifteen minutes at each of the switchover stations, vainly hoping for your train to come. Oh, and after about 7PM, you had to wait even longer, because the trains run half as often.

And then there was this mystical, legendary "Red Line" which supposedly went directly from the hotel all the way to the convention, but seemed to exist only in legend. You'd hear about it when you stopped to talk to the wizened old man who was rumored to have been sitting in the trolley station for upwards of fifty years, waiting for his train to come. He'd lean forward, eyes flashing like lightning, and regale you with stories of the "Red Beast" emerging on the tracks only on a night with no moon, coming from out of the mist and stopping only for a scant three seconds before once again vanishing into the inky blackness. It makes no sound except for the wailing of souls which it uses for its trolley bell.

Seriously, though. The trolley service sucked. It always took us at least an hour to get to and from the con, and one night it took us two and a half hours! Trains kept pulling up to the station, only to have the driver announce "This train is no longer in service" and then literally back up down the tracks away from us. The only thing missing was the sadistic laughter. One time a train came and was so full of people that we literally could not squeeze any more on, but the trolley man assured us that there was another train "about three minutes behind me". More than a half hour later, that train finally arrived.

And it wasn't just the lousy running times. It was the little things as well. None of the trolley stations had seating for more than about three people, so you were standing the whole time you waited, with your arms heavy laden with con swag and your legs aching from running back and forth between Hall H and the panel rooms. And in another great piece of San Diego charm, the Orange to Blue switchover station had a convenience store which was conveniently located right next to the tracks, but was unconveniently only open from like 9 to 5. So all you could do while waiting for your trolley was stare at the glittering array of salted snack treats from behind the large plate glass windows and curse the man who would be so cruel as to operate a much needed convenience store and then have the gall to close it before the convention hall had even closed. It takes a truly sadistic individual to hate humanity so much that he's willing to throw away that many potential sales.

So yeah, David Willis pretty much hit the nail on the head here. I can literally think of no good thing to say about the San Diego trolley, and if there is any sort of justice, someday there will be a terrible vengeance wrought upon them.


At 8:24 AM, Anonymous Christian Ricker said...

Well heidi ho neighborino! That's a right fancy doo dad you got here.


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