Qualified Condition

March 4, 2009

Train Grammar

Filed under: Uncategorized — qualifiedcondition @ 12:08 am


Terlet humor has never been smiled upon in my family.  Nevertheless, when my granddad was a kid, he imposed the words of an instructional sign on the train over a popular song of the day.  It went:


Passengers will please refrain
from flushing toilets on the train
while standing in the station
I love you. 
We encourage constipation
while the train is in the station
pretty sunsets make me think of you.


I’ll let you figure out where the announcement stops and the original song starts.


The other day I was watching 30 Rock and a joke was made regarding a letter written by the Tina Fey character attempting to correct the grammar of a subway announcement.  I did one of those laugh scream things.  Earlier the same day I had emailed Metro here in LA in an attempt to have a grammatically offensive announcement changed.  I AM Liz Lemon.  Here is part of my email:


The announcement says, “Passengers are reminded to make yourselves aware of the safety procedures posted in each car…”  Clearly there is a syntax issue here.  The announcement should either say “Passengers are reminded to make themselves aware of the safety procedures posted in each car…” or a somewhat clumsier “Make yourself aware of the safety procedures posted in each car…”  I suppose there are many other options, but the currently existing announcement is poorly worded.

I had more-or-less forgotten about the matter, but yesterday, as I rode home I realized that the train conductor was making his own announcement, rather than playing the recorded garbage (and yes, his grammar was fine).  This morning there was no announcement at all.  Could it be that my e-mail has actually corrected the announcement?  How are people going to know where to send thank you cards?!





  1. “Passengers are reminded to” sounds awfully British. I’d say “Safety procedures are posted in each car; please be aware of them in case of an emergency.”

    I would settle for incorrect grammar on my bus routes if they made it so that the recording wasn’t like 5-10 stops behind on its announcements.

    Comment by L. Hollyfeld — March 4, 2009 @ 1:28 am

  2. For those of you in need of a tune for said ditty, you may sing it to the popularized version of Dvorak’s “Humoresque.”

    Comment by blogobispo — March 4, 2009 @ 8:07 am

  3. this is hilarious.

    Comment by Holly — March 4, 2009 @ 7:06 pm

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