The New Exchange Street Train Station
Posted by Dave
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Buffalo has two (Amtrak) train stations. One is called the Depew station, and is certainly interesting. But the other is located downtown on Exchange Street, which is my lifeline to New York City -- as if I'm always rolling back and forth there, which I do not these days because it's always expensive to go, and because, well, now COVID. But, I like the idea of being in some way at New York City's doorstep.
Last weekend I stopped by the new station which opened the weekend before and took pictures and videos. You can view the result at the New Exchange Street Station Google Photo Album.
Buffalo New Exchange Street Station
The train to New York is both comfortable yet suspiciously impractical. Booked well enough in advance, some flights out of Buffalo to New York are actually about the same cost, or, certainly not much more expensive, than a two-way Amtrak ticket. And flights are usually listed as taking just an hour and a half, though, in practice, it takes about one hour. The train takes a whopping nine hours and it is generally accepted that in fact it will take longer. There's always some issue in the journey that causes a delay.
But that comfort thing is a big deal if you're in no particular hurry. There are no stifling crowds and none of the airport-grade security checkpoints. You just show up about a half hour before the train's arrival, board, then take advantage of plenty of leg room, wi-fi, and the occassional jaunt to the cafe car for drinks and snacks. It's nine (advertised) hours, yes, but they are actually pleasent making plane versus train worth the debate. The other real advantage is that the train slides into New York's Penn Station which is smack in the middle of where you likely want to be if you're going to New York, and connections to any other place you might.
When you consider the airport endpoint hassles, and the time getting from the airport to the places you want to actually be in the city when you arrive, the total time you need to spend in a discombulated transition state dramatically narrows the time gap advantage between the plane and train. For many, the comfort factor then settles the argument.
photo railstuff video
Not How You Do It
Posted by Dave
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On Friday I had to use an Uber to go to the eye doctor's where I knew my pupils would be dilated. I paged the Uber through the app, then added a "note" saying I was wearing a blue jacket.
When the guy rolled up I hopped in and the first thing out of this old crank's mouth was, "Did you try to send me a message". I said yep, just trying to make it easier for you to spot me. He shot back, angrily, "That's now how you do it!". He then proceeded to lecture me on some distinction between whatever tool within the app makes the difference between my "note" and whatever equals a valid text message -- but I was too dumbfounded to absorb it, finding myself being greeted by a yell-at from my Uber driver as was the case. WTF?
Anyway, I think God was giving me a lesson or something as I've always been hard on people using the ticket system in all my years of IT supporting - to the point of making it the lead conversation. Well, THAT is going to change starting now. #SlappedInTheFace
In the Interim, I am Not A Crook
Posted by Dave
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Fake news - I am not a crook.
For those who have followed me on social media or through this personal website, through my many iterations of accounts, de-friend sweeps, and feed resets, you know that each year I post a statement of identity correction in an effort to assuage concerns of incidents and criminal history that have attached to my name thanks to a persistent imposter in Florida.
Since many employers and dating candidates, and landlords, first bee-line to things like Facebook to check out a prospect (an understandable universal practice, especially among you ladies, but, which for some bizarre reason can turn a guy into a creep if he confesses to doing the same), I see this tactic as a last line of defense in people erroneously harboring those concerns.
If this practice of mine is not actually helping, at least it psychologically puts me at ease. If people continue to believe or suspect negative search findings despite the clear case and evidence of judicial correction, chances are it's probably an irreversible political position meaning that it's "important that I be bad" -- not a genuine one based on a tangible relationship. No public disclosure is going to clear that up, but I feel I've done the best I can to put them into a position of clinging to a fallacy, which does make me feel better.
I usually post/circulate that disclaimer in January of each year, but today I am posting a variant of this before then, for two reasons. One, I completely re-did this personal website and have not yet concocted a disclaimer page. It's kind of low priority and is a bit of work, though I will eventually do it. Posting it as an entry here at my blog and on my Facebook's reset feed will do the trick until then.
Second, I realize that even that disclaimer fails to take into account the phenomenon of the "records echo" that rings through services like MyLife and PeopleFinders like, forever.
My records have been successfully tackled and eliminated in the courts, sadly after too much damage, but better late than never. But they STILL exist in all the little background check services any employer or person cares to utilize. Even after all the work to mop up that mess, the slow burning disaster continues on. Gads.
So, ahead of January, I am posting this now. If you see crap like the above screenshot (an actual run of my name in PeopleFinders), none of it is real. It's fake news. Yes, it's true that if you follow me around with a camera and notebook you won't prove I'm a saint, which is true of anyone - and god knows I've stoked many an investigatory trajectory by nature of my unique wonderful being and saber rattling against strong institutions (particularly in Florida), which I would never trade away to be someone different. BUT I have never been arrested nor have I ever even approached such an event horizon in the crimes listed in the example.
I'll post my disclaimer in January which discusses and "proves" what I'm typing, but for now, here is the nonsense in background check services you may use that is not actually me that will tell you it is me.