It's time for...Unsolved Mysteries of the Subway! Let's tackle subway station dirtiness first: Emily at Amy's Robot happened to spy some vomit on the stairs at the 42nd Street A/C/E station on February 3...and then she still saw it there on February 10. So she called 311 - cut to February 13 and her email to the MTA:
However, yesterday, February 13, I saw that the vomit (now indelibly dried to the staircase) is still there. While I understand that TWU members are still without a contract, and that resources are tight, I am pleading with you to please have this situation remedied. It is a danger to myself and other riders to have to "hurl" ourselves, so to speak, into the middle of such a crowded staircase to avoid being covered to the ankles in puke.
And the MTA responded on February 15, saying their cleaning crews would circulate (Stations are routinely cleaned, and cleaners are instructed to remove litter, empty trash receptacles and disinfect unsanitary areas upon detection. In addition, stations are cleaned on a regular cycle by mobile wash teams using high pressure and hot water to thoroughly steam clean and sanitize the stairways, platforms and other areas.) As patient as she is, Emily refuses to let dry vomit become a rat-magnet and wrote to the MTA that since her various calls and emails hadn't been working, that she'll be taking pictures of the vomit stairs and posting them online. So, dear Gothamist readers who don't like graphic pictures, you've been warned - and you're lucky some people advised us against posting Emily's photograph (apparently the cat picture was enough for today; also, go Emily!).
And also at the Eighth Avenue-42nd Street subway station: A "tortured and severely beaten man" with his hands bound in wire was found there. According to the Post, the transit police were alerted to him by a subway rider and cops are trying to identify the middle-aged Eastern European man. He can write but cannot speak, and his notes say "he remembers something about being kept in a box." Very scary - could it be the Russian mob?
Photograph by Joe Schumacher