Teens admonished for using CTA emergency exit get their revenge

It was another Red Line ride on Cubs game day, heading south toward Addison. Two suburban trixies and three meathead grad students were sitting at the end of the car opposite the Hobo Corner, having a loud, animated discussion about whether they were conservative or liberal. One woman flipped her long, blonde hair and declared: "Like, I'm socially liberal, but economically conservative, you know?"

cta3200s-emerg door.jpg

(Photo from chicago-l.org)

At Berwyn, three high school girls and a huge, 6-foot-5 guy boarded. The guy sported nicely applied eyeliner and nail polish. His hair cascaded down to his waist. They walked quickly to the emergency doors to cross between cars. As he started to open the emergency door, one of the suburban trixies grabbed the handle of the door. In a loud voice she announced, "Ummm, that says emergency exit for a reason, you know. This is like, really stupid. And, you know, really dangerous. So, could you like, stop it?!?"

The tall high-schooler turned and stared in disbelief. With his hand on hip, he expertly flipped back his own beautiful long hair. And in his best imitation of a suburban trixie, he screamed, "OMIGAWD!!"

Then he bounced through the emergency exit with his little posse of girls.


Leave a comment
  • Great story! A few years ago, I tried to remind an elderly man that the door between trains was for emergencies, and he said, "You're just a f****** Republican!" All righty then...I let him go. (No, I'm not what he said I was.)

  • Like anyone has honored the "do not cross between cars" sign. Probably going back to the first married units in the 50s.

  • In reply to jack:

    I honor the sign. Especially since last year when I saw a plainclothes cop give a man a ticket for crossing through the door.

  • In reply to jack:

    I use them when there's someone crazy enough to be scary, or smelly enough to make me want to pass out. If I were ticketed during either of those events I'd make a case that it was more hazardous to my health to stay in that car. And if the judge didn't go with it, I'd gladly pay the ticket to have gotten out of there.

  • why would you board one car only to immediately cross through to another?

  • Good for him. There's no reason not to use it.

  • In reply to BobS:

    Other than that it's prohibited and dangerous?

  • In reply to scottknitter:

    It wasn't until recently and there's no reason for it to be.

  • In reply to BobS:

    Like I said, there were signs on the green and white cars not to do it. The cover over the handle is a more recent development.

    Also, as a reason, there isn't a vestibule between the cars, just some chains. Go around a curve and get thrown from the train and then guess what the reaction would be.

  • In reply to scottknitter:

    Like, OMG, too funny.

    I used the emergency door for the first time a few weeks ago. Southbound Purple in Evanston, Sunday about 6pm. There was a schizophrenic guy who was truly frightening. The entire car was empty and he chose to sit right next to me and yell at the voices in his head. I don't scare easily what with the shiny master's degree in nutsness and 10 years of working at the crapass school, but this dude was a piece of work, so I took my chances with the emergency door. No tickets, no arrest, no trixy admonishment and I even managed not to fall on the tracks.

    BTW, is there an age cutoff for being a trixy? We got into a heated debate the other day while meeting off-site after school. Inquiring minds want to know. These are the things we discuss to keep the despair at bay while we wait for RonH to fire us.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    I always love your stories Martha. Good stuff even if scary.

    Cut-off age for Trixies? I'll throw out 25.

  • In reply to BobS:

    seriously, who can tell me why people do this? other than to get away from something happening/smelling in the adjacent car. most people i see doing this are teenagers who move from car to car without stopping.

  • In reply to mickcube:

    I do it when I can see that the other car has seats free and mine does not. Easier and strangely feels safer than hopping off at a station and rushing to that car. Ive never witnessed or heard of someone getting hurt going between cars, but I've seen plenty of people get hurt running on the platform (with or without a train in the station).

  • I have a co-worker who's been ticketed twice for using the emergency doors.

Leave a comment