by Courtney Brown June 9, 2016 at 1:45 pm 0

Dupont Circle MetroWho do you call if you spot a suspicious package on your train car? What should you do if you suddenly find yourself in a smoke-filled Metro tunnel? How will you get around the city during SafeTrack?

Emergency personnel and WMATA transit officials hope to answer these and other questions during an instructional safety event hosted by the Golden Triangle BID next week.

During the event, which is scheduled to take place at 1050 Connecticut Ave. NW next Tuesday at 10 a.m., representatives with WMATA, D.C. Fire and EMS, MPD and other local agencies will show commuters what to do in the event of an underground emergency.

Topics of discussion include how to use the safety equipment on railcars, how to report crime or other suspicious activity and how to navigate through transit service changes such as the ongoing SafeTrack plan.

Leona Agouridis, executive director of the BID, said the discussion is aimed at teaching people who live and work in the area between Dupont Circle and the White House how to handle themselves in potentially dire situations.

Agouridis added that she would like to see locals attend not only for their own education, but also so they can share what they learned with coworkers, family and friends.

Those interested in attending must RSVP for the event before noon tomorrow.

by Jennifer Currier October 6, 2015 at 3:30 pm 5 Comments

Andrew Lewis in Dupont Circle

Metro riders have probably heard a man with a booming voice singing hymns and songs of worship at station entrances near Dupont Circle, Farragut and downtown. Andrew Lewis is the 50-year-old owner of that voice, and he’s been spreading his sharing his message with morning commuters for the past three years.

“The Lord spoke to me and told me to step out here on the streets and do full-time ministry,” Lewis said. “That’s what I’ve been doing ever since, reaching out by singing praise and worship.”

Ask Lewis what he does for a living and he’ll tell you: this. He keeps a donation box close by while he belts out holy praises at the top of his lungs.

Despite not having any formal musical training, Lewis shares this message through song. Though his message isn’t always well-received, Lewis said his goal is to be heard, even if people aren’t listening.

“I don’t have any complaints,” he said. “I’m doing what I’m passionate about, and that’s key. Regardless of what I’m going through, I know who my source is. That’s what got me through the fire.”

“The fact that I can reach people in the great capacity I have over the last three years is a blessing in itself,” said Lewis. “We’re in a world where not everyone believes, so I know what I’m up against. For the most part, it’s been a great journey.”

The Richmond native was ordained as a Baptist deacon in the summer of 2009. At the time, he lived in Newport News, Va., and worked with the ministry at the Providence Baptist Church.

About month after his ordination, Lewis was preparing to make dinner late one night by heating up some vegetable oil in a stockpot. He left the room for a moment and came back to find a disaster.

“When I came back into the kitchen, the apartment was on fire,” Lewis recalled. “I didn’t have a fire extinguisher and I wasn’t really thinking, so I pitched some water on it. It was just instinct.”

That panic-driven instinct resulted in an explosion that covered Lewis in hot oil. He was able to exit the apartment through a window and seek help at a fire station across the street, but he was badly burned.

After a full day of being blind in both eyes, skin grafts, surgeries and five months of recovery, Lewis was well enough to leave town. He bounced between Virginia and New York before settling in D.C. three years ago.

Though Metro riders have gotten used to his morning gospels, Lewis said his journey is coming to an end, at least for now. In December, he’ll move back to Richmond to care for his elderly mother and try to find other work.

In terms of the rest of his future, there’s only one thing Lewis knows for sure.

“Even if I’m not singing, the ministry will always be in my life because that’s just who I am,” he said. “I just want to keep reaching people and letting my light shine.”

by Sean Meehan September 21, 2015 at 3:50 pm 0

Pope Francis

Have you heard? The pope is coming, and with his visit comes road closures, transit changes and extra security across the District. But will it be the end of the world? Pope-alypse? Pope-mageddon? Probably not.

Residents across the Borderstan coverage area will likely feel the effects of Pope Francis’ visit on Wednesday, when the pope will hold mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Dupont Circle after parading around the White House.

Here’s our big infodump-y list of what to expect from the Pope’s visit:

Where Pope Francis Will Be

  • Pope Francis will meet with President Obama Wednesday morning, which will be followed by a parade around the White House along Constitution Avenue NW and 15th and 17th streets NW
  • The pope’s motorcade will then go from the White House to the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle at 1725 Rhode Island Ave. NW, where he will hold a midday prayer with U.S. bishops.
  • He will then head to Catholic University to hold mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
  • LGBT Catholics will gather outside of the Human Rights Campaign offices at 17th Street NW and Rhode Island Avenue NW to greet the pope as his motorcade passes en route to the cathedral

Where Pope Francis Will Not Be

Those looking to avoid the pope and road closures altogether should stay north of O Street NW. Places to avoid include Massachusetts Avenue near the Naval Observatory on Tuesday night, Farragut Square, Dupont, Catholic University and Brookland on Wednesday and the U.S. Capitol and downtown on Thursday.

Road Closures

  • Rhode Island Avenue NW between Connecticut Avenue NW and 17th Street NW will be closed from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday
  • Several roads around the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle will close intermittently between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. including:
    – M Street NW between Connecticut Avenue NW and 17th Street NW
    – Connecticut Avenue NW between 18th Street NW and Desales Street NW
    – 17th Street NW between M and N streets NW

Parking Restrictions

  • Parking will be prohibited between midnight and 3 p.m. Wednesday in a one-block radius from the Cathedral including:
    – Rhode Island Avenue NW between 17th Street NW and Connecticut Avenue NW
    – M Street NW between Connecticut Avenue NW and the BB&T bank halfway      down the block
  • Parking will be limited from midnight tonight until 6 p.m. Thursday between 11th and 12th streets NW and between K and O streets NW

Metro Trains

  • Service on all lines will be increased during the midday and evenings. Metro does not have the capacity to increase service during rush hours and expects trains to be very crowded at those times
  • Bicycles and large coolers will not be allowed on Metro trains Wednesday or Thursday
  • Bags, packages and containers may be searched at Metro stations
  • There is no scheduled track work on any lines during the Pope’s visit
  • Updated information will be made available online

Metro Bus

  • 37, D1, D3, H1 and S1 buses will not operate on Wednesday or Thursday

Several bus routes have been shortened from due to road closures along their routes. Those bus lines are:

  • 42 and 43 will only operate between Mt. Pleasant and 9th Street NW and F Street NW from 9 p.m. Wednesday to 2 p.m. Thursday
  • N2 and N4 will only operate between Friendship Heights and the National Cathedral at 34th Street NW and Garfield Street NW from 9 a.m. Tuesday to 4 p.m. Thursday.
  • N3 and N6 will only operate between Friendship Heights and Dupont Circle from 9 a.m. Tuesday to 4 p.m. Thursday
  • S2 and S4 will only operate between Silver Spring and McPherson Square from 10:30 a.m. Tuesday to 2 p.m. Wednesday


  • The Dupont Circle-Georgetown-Rosslyn and Woodley Park-Adams Morgan-McPherson Square lines will run every 15 minutes starting at noon on Wednesday and lasting until Thursday evening


  • D.C. Public Schools will all be open for the entirety of the Pope’s visit. School officials warn that road closures and crowds may affect transportation to and from school and said parents can contact the Parent Resource Center at 202-576-5000 for transportation-related questions during the Pope’s visit.

Several charter schools will be closed on Wednesday, including:

  • All Carlos Rosario International Charter School locations
  • All Center City Public Charter School locations
  • E.L. Hayned Public Charter School
  • All KIPP D.C. locations

Places to Celebrate

  • Embassy Row Hotel in Dupont Circle will hold a pope-themed rooftop party Tuesday night with foods from Pope Francis’ native Argentina. Tickets are $25
  • Rumors Bar and Grill has a special pope sandwich on their menu this week
  • Posto restaurant on 14th Street NW will offer a tasting menu of Roman dishes in honor of the pope’s visit
  • Here’s a list of pope drink specials popping up across town

If you take any photos His Holiness, be sure to send them our way. We may feature some reader photos in a post. Send your photos to [email protected] or tweet them at us.

Happy Pope-ing.

by Jared Holt July 1, 2015 at 9:30 am 0


Pope Alert! — In September, Pope Francis will visit St. Matthew’s Cathedral as part of his North America travel. Church officials say they’re preparing to host approximately 25,000 visitors. [Borderstan]

Holiday Metro Prep — On Independence Day, Metro will run near rush-hour service levels from 2 p.m. until after the fireworks. Parking will be free and off-peak fares will be offered. [ABC7]

Park View Robbery — Last Saturday, two men robbed and destroyed much of the interior of the 77 Market at Georgia Avenue and Irving Street NW. ANC1A commissioner Kent Boese to look into what he says is a “serious crime trend in the area.” [Park View DC]

Sinkhole Warning — The 4800 block of 7th Street NW in Petworth closed yesterday after a sinkhole opened in the middle of the street. [NBC]

by June 27, 2013 at 9:00 am 0

From Willis Shawver. Follow him on Twitter at @WShawver or email him at Willis[AT]


The Metro Rule, it never fails. (Luis Gomez Photos)

After living in a city for a while, you start to pick up on some of the unwritten rules that apply to that particular city. I’ve definitely learned a few unwritten rules while living here in the District.

Keep your commute under 30 minutes. Stand on the right, walk on the left. Parking on Connecticut Ave after 7:30 am on a weekday will get you a $100 ticket. Okay, maybe that’s a written rule, but you get the idea.

And what it is the most important rule I’ve learned while living here? The Metro Rule.

I haven’t always lived in the District. When I first moved to the area more than 10 years ago, I lived in a far off place called Fair-A-Fax. It’s a magical place full of things called CostCo, Applebees and McMansions. People do this thing they call “driving.” It’s all very strange. While I might have lived out in the suburbs, I worked in downtown DC. Right across from Camelot. Great lunch buffet, by the way.

To get to work every day, I would drive 15 minutes to the nearest Metro station, park, ride the Metro for 35 minutes and then walk 10 minutes to my office. Then I would do it all again in reverse later that same day. Practically two hours of my day lost to the commute.

Like any good 20-something with a job in the city, I attended my fair share of happy hours and social events after work. Sometimes those social events included drinking. Okay, a lot of those social events included drinking. And the one constant after every event, was the long Metro ride home.

And do you know what Metro stations and Metro cars don’t have? Bathrooms. Henceforth, the Metro Rule was born.

Met·ro Rule (metrō ro͞ol) noun

Definition: The idea that an individual should visit the lavatory before leaving their current location.

Example of Metro Rule: Brian decided it was a good idea to apply the Metro Rule after closing out his tab at the bar.

I truly believe that Metro turnstiles are cursed. As soon as you walk through… BOOM! You’ve got to go. And what’s that? A 15-minute wait for the next Red Line train, AND you’ve got to transfer at Chinatown? This is not looking good my friend. You should have Metro Ruled. Yes, it’s a verb too.

You might say to yourself, “I don’t have to go. I just went!” (Sigh) Your body is lying to you. You do have to go. Or maybe you’re not even taking the Metro. That’s why the rule applies to all modes of transportation. Bus. Bike. Cab. Walking. It doesn’t matter, the rule applies!

There are NO exceptions to the Metro Rule. None. Well, maybe a couple. Long bathroom lines can be a deterrent to the Metro Rule. Proximity to your next destination is also a factor. Are you literally walking next store or just a few blocks away? Ok, fine. Hold it, but you’ve been warned.

Ultimately, the Metro Rule is infallible. When applied consistently and correctly, the rule will bring peace of mind and … relief to those who believe in the power of preemptive peeing.

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by February 20, 2013 at 6:00 am 0


Balancing Act is by ep_jhu from the Borderstan Flickr pool.

Photos of the Day are pulled from the Borderstan Reader Photos pool on Flickr.

Today’s photo, Balancing Act is by ep_jhu. The photo was taken on February 27.

If you don’t already have a Flickr account, you will need to sign up for one, and then join the Borderstan Reader Photos group. Already a Flickr member? Join the group! You can submit up to five photos per day in the Borderstan reader pool. We are looking for photos from DC’s Dupont, Logan and U Street neighborhoods.

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by April 13, 2012 at 8:00 am 2,414 1 Comment

What’s in store this summer for Metro riders? (dracisk in the Borderstan Flickr pool)

By Michelle Lancaster. You can follow her and let her know your news on Twitter @MichLancaster. Email her at michellel[AT]

Based on the Metro track work schedule, you could assume one of two things: if you are a pessimist, you would easily conclude that Metro decided to put its best foot forward for the throngs of tourist that escalefted, came to an abrupt stop at the top of the escalator and failed to tell their children not to sit on the floor in front of a Metro car door.

A less cynical commuter would argue that a Metro facing greater volumes of passengers wanted to quickly move those riders in and out of the system, rather than mire them in track work delays. But whether your illegal Metro beverage is half-full or half-empty, here’s the truth: if you rely on Metro, it’s going to be a very long, very slow and inconvenient summer.

Huffington Post brings a litany of unwelcome news:

  1. The Red Line will continue to experience track work, with buses replacing trains.
  2. Labor Day weekend is likely to be a hot mess, with the Yellow Line out of commission over the Potomac River bridge.
  3. Orange and Blue Lines will enjoy the dysfunction later in the fall.

But never fear, Metro points us to “free shuttle buses” and their trusty website with update alerts. Since I would prefer to have a free Metro ride when the system experiences a failure of epic proportions, or at least an apology instead of an excuse, pardon me for not applauding Metro’s free backup system.

Then again, perhaps the bar is low enough that simply having a back up plan, or plans that are being executed according to a schedule, can be considered a Metro win?

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by April 3, 2012 at 2:00 pm 1,506 0

"Borderstan" "People" "Street""14th Street"

Strangers are just friends I haven’t met. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Candida Mannozzi. You can reach her at candida[AT]

Borderstan, since a few of my recent posts were a bit more critical of some of the behaviors I’ve observed in our ‘hood, I wanted to share this anecdote with you. I was recently all the way (!) out in West Falls Church, on my way to a conference at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), waiting to catch a connecting bus from the Metro station to get to the USGS.

Now, I am one of those lucky few who “commutes” to work on foot for less than 10 minutes, so I have no daily need for Metro, buses, cars or other means of transportation, be they public or private. This means I am one of those dinosaurs who does not own a SmartCard.

So here I was, a little before 8 a.m. at West Falls Church and I realized I did not have exact change for the connecting bus fare. In fact, I was one dollar short and had the typical $20 yuppie-stamp in my wallet. Of course, there was no vending machine, deli, coffee shop or anything similar available for me to break my $20. I walked up to the bus stop and asked the only lady standing there whether she could possibly break my bill. She didn’t have enough to do that, but she offered me a single instead. She just gave it to me.

I was so grateful and also very embarrassed at not having prepared for this commute properly, being forced to ask a complete stranger for money! It reminded me of the many times I’ve passed people on the street, panhandling for change and not getting very far.  And here I, on my first request, got the help I needed and a pleasant exchange in the bargain.  Our ensuing chat, as we waited for the bus, revealed that we’d both grown up in the same mountain range in the Alps, just on different sides of it: she in Austria, I in Italy.

My one “consolation” for being unprepared was to remember that I’ve done my share of good turns to total strangers (one of these developed into a friendship with a painter from Barcelona, whom I helped as she was trying to negotiate the ticket machines in the Dupont Circle Metro station). So perhaps my turn had come to be assisted, as I had done for others in the past.

All moralizing or conjecture aside, Borderstan, I wish all of us occasions in which to receive the kindness of strangers. May we also get some opportunities to practice that kindness on others. Happy Spring!

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by March 15, 2012 at 6:00 am 1,389 0

"Borderstan" "anokarina" "Dupont Circle Metro"

“down into the belly, of the beast” is by anokarina from the Borderstan flickr pool.

Photos of the Day are pulled from the Borderstan Reader Photos pool on Flickr.

Today’s photo, “down into the belly, of the beast” was taken by anokarina on February 2.

If you don’t already have a Flickr account, you will need to sign up for one, and then join the Borderstan Reader Photos group. Already a Flickr member? Join the group! You can submit up to five photos per day in the Borderstan reader pool. We are looking for photos from D.C.’s Dupont, Logan and U Street neighborhoods.

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by March 12, 2012 at 2:30 pm 1,646 2 Comments

From Cody Telep. Follow him on Twitter @codywt, email him at cody[AT]

The Metro Transit Police Department released 2011 crime figures last week, which showed that total serious crime was down about 16% over 2010 numbers (see coverage from The Washington Examiner). While the 1,898 total serious incidents are fewer than last year and 2009, serious crime was still higher than in both 2007 and 2008.

DC, Metro, crime, stats, dcracisk, Borderstan, Flickr, pool

Serious crime on the Metro was down 16% in 2011 from the previous year. (Photo from dracisk in Borderstan Flickr pool)

Just as in 2010, none of the four Metro stations in the Borderstan coverage area were among the 10 stations with the highest number of incidents either overall or in DC. The U Street/African American Civil War Memorial/Cardozo station had 31 Part I incidents, followed by Shaw-Howard University with 23 incidents.

Dupont Circle recorded 15 incidents, and Mount Vernon Square 7th Street-Convention Center had 10. The Deanwood Station had the most incidents in the Metro system in 2011 with 67.

Part I incidents include the most serious violent (rape, robbery, aggravated assault) and property (burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft) crimes. While Metro did not provide the breakdown of offense type by station, the most common Part I crimes in the system are robberies and larcenies. Since the four Borderstan stations do not have parking, motor vehicle crimes are, of course, unlikely.

Metro Station Crime Numbers

Total Part I Crimes Rank Overall Rank in DC
U Street/Cardozo 31 21 11
Shaw-Howard University 23 30 14
Dupont Circle 15 41 23
Mount Vernon Square 10 50 25


In terms of enforcement activity, there were few arrests for Part I crimes made at any of the Metro stations in Borderstan. The U Street/Cardozo station had four Part I arrests, Shaw-Howard University and Dupont Circle both had 3 and there were zero Part I arrests at the Mount Vernon Square station.

You can read the full report on 2011 crime from the Metro Safety and Security Committee online.

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by March 1, 2012 at 12:00 pm 2,352 0

WMATA, Metro, DC, subway, Borderstan

Yes, you can take photos on the Metro. (Borderstan file photo)

By Michelle Lancaster. You can follow her and let her know your news on Twitter @MichLancaster. Email her at michellel[AT]

The law states you can take still photographs on WMATA Metro cars and at stations, so long as you do not have a tripod, special lighting, a film crew, etc. It seems clear the rule is set up to discourage amateur movie shoots or a flash mob runway show near the tunnels. But as TBD notes, plenty of people are getting grief for taking pictures in the stations or of trains while observing the letter of the law.

WMATA says it’s totally legal (except at Pentagon) so snap away! The number of complaints in the piece seem to indicate that more than a few WMATA employees may be unaware of the legality of photography; hopefully the attention this piece drew will lead to formal or informal training of said employees. For those that like to stir the pot, I challenge you to (without a tripod!) take photos this week in Metro stations. If you get any grief, tell me when, where and what was said. Post the pics in the Flickr pool and we’ll even pick a winner for a lovely prize!
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by February 12, 2012 at 11:30 am 1,515 0


By Michelle Lancaster. Got news, a hot tip or want to complain about what is or isn’t in this? Let her know on Twitter @michlancaster or via email at[email protected].

Washington Examiner reports that WMATA has already had to use their emergency plans for the Dupont Circle Metro station twice since closing the south entrance (on the south side of the Circle).

The first problem occurred when a train broke down — WMATA closed off access to the station to prevent crowding. That makes some sense, because it can easily escalate from a crowded platform to a dangerous platform.

Less tolerable is the malfunction that caused all three escalators to become stairs for thirty minutes during the evening commute.

The likely culprit? A false fire alarm that automatically shuts down escalators. When I rode past the station on Thursday, there was a little mobile unit for emergency response outside the south side entrance.  Here’s hoping for a smoother rest of the year.

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by January 13, 2012 at 6:00 am 1,656 0

"Borderstan""U Street Metro Station"

“No Pants Metro Ride” is by thisisbossi from the Borderstan flickr pool.

From Luis Gomez. You can follow Luis on Twitter @LuisGomezPhotos and at One Photograph A Day.

Photos of the Day are pulled from the Borderstan Reader Photos pool on Flickr.

Today’s photo, “No Pants Metro Ride,” was taken by thisisbossi on January 8. From thisisbossi: “The 2012 DC No Pants Metro Ride, an off-shoot of Improv Everywhere’s own. This was DC’s fifth year, contrasting with NYC’s 11th of the annual event.”

If you don’t already have a Flickr account, you will need to sign up for one, and then join the Borderstan Reader Photos group. Already a Flickr member? Join the group! You can submit up to five photos per day in the Borderstan reader pool. We are looking for photos from D.C.’s Dupont, Logan and U Street neighborhoods.

by January 9, 2012 at 10:30 am 2,561 3 Comments

DC Police are promising to issue more tickets to people in park in bike lanes. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Maggie Barron. You can reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @maggiebarron.

More Tickets for Blocking Bike Lanes

With new bike lanes (hopefully) on their way, it looks like Policy Chief Cathy Lanier is on board to support them. “We’ve quadrupled the number of tickets we’ve issued for people who block bike lanes,” she told WTOP in an interview last Thursday. Lanier says that they issued 2000 tickets in 2011, but “it’s going to take a while for the culture [shift] to kick in.”

Look Metro, No Pants!

I avoided Metro all weekend due to the single tracking, only to realize that I also missed the 5th annual “No Pants Metro Ride DC.” For those of you unfamiliar with this yearly occasion, run by Capitol Improv, the name is fairly self-explanatory. On Sunday afternoon, several hundred Metro riders boarded trains and rode around without pants on (though PG-13 underwear is encouraged).

During this season of protest, organizers on the event’s Facebook page were quick to remind people that the No Pants Metro Ride is not political. The page says, helpfully, “the point of the day is not to ‘protest pants.'” Good to know. The event came full circle to our neighborhood with an afterparty at Nellie’s.

DC Historic Preservation Review Board Lacks Members

As a history major, I get excited whenever I read about history professionals being in demand. Last year Mayor Vince Gray dragged his feet on nominations for the Historic Preservation Review Board, and it looks like those delays are about to cause some big headaches.  According to City Paper, two of Gray’s nominees have said they don’t want the position.

With other members’ terms expired or expiring, the nine-member board might be left with only one current representative. In a recent letter to the Mayor, Councilmember Tommy Wells reminded him that by law, the board must have experts in history, architectural history, and archeology, or risk losing its federal funding. “With our significant number of landmarks and historic districts, the critical role of the HPRB cannot be overemphasized,” Wells wrote.

by January 3, 2012 at 8:00 am 1,844 4 Comments


Walk when you’re on the left! (ep_jhu in the Borderstan Flickr pool)

From Mike Kohn. Got an urban etiquette ‘wrong’ that needs to be righted? Find Mike on Twitter @mike_kohn or drop him a line at [email protected].

I swear, sometimes it’s the simplest things out there that create the biggest problems. Is it really that hard to ride an escalator? The concept is easy enough — you stand and ride or you walk up the moving staircase until you get off. And yet, how many times have I walked up or down an escalator to find someone blocking my path, like an obnoxious Parcheesi opponent?

Just last week as I was descending into the Dupont Circle metro, I had to jump to the side to avoid barreling into someone who decided that it would be a good idea to stop directly at the bottom of the escalator. Apparently we could use a little clueing in.

  • Stand to the right, walk on the left. This is posted everywhere, so you have absolutely no excuse not to do it. I’m a walker, so I’ll be racing by you on the left. When you stand in the middle of the escalator or, even worse, block the left lane, you irritate everyone.
  • In a similar vein, if you have bulky items or just a lot of them, keep them close. Yeah, I’m sure there’s something about security and watching your stuff, but really, just don’t block my way up the side.
  • When you finish your chariot ride up or down, move out of the way. There are people behind you and believe it or not, they have nowhere to go if you block their way off of the escalator.

This is DC, people. We move fast and we get things done. We don’t have time to wait for people to figure out how to use something as easy as an escalator.

Recently, Metro coined a new phrase: “escalefter.” Definition: a person who stands on the left side of the escalator when he should be standing on the right.” I think it’s time we respect those signs, don’t you think?


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