Is there nothing better than arriving at the Dupont Circle Metro stop on a Monday morning and finding that both of the "up" escalators are out of service? I know last time I complained about an escalator outage I was accused of being out of shape. So, I'd like to point out to you that there were quite a few commuters who were so tired out by the Trail of Tears to 19th Street that they had to take a couple of breathers. I know because I was caught behind one and couldn't squirm my way into the passing lane.
I understand that bad things happen and that elevator outages are to be expected. The Metro has always had elevator and escalator outages. I guess it's part of its charm. To expect anything less would be a pipe dream. That being said, the Metro failed its many commuters by having the escalator going down into the station in fine working condition. Here are some observations:
1. The number of people arriving at the 19th Street Dupont Metro stop greatly outnumbers the number of people departing. 19th Street is nothing but office buildings. It's home to two gigantic law firms (Steptoe & Johnson and Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld) and various other soulless corporate stuff. It's where people work, not where people live. So the working escalator should be the one that benefits the most people. The escalator should have been going up.
2. Walking downstairs is easier than walking upstairs. Duh. The Dupont escalator has a lot of stairs. Anyone who is even a little bit out of shape is going to get tired. It turns out there a lot of out of shape office workers. Anyone who is past their physical prime is going to get tired. There are a lot of people over the age of 50 working in law firms. People walking downstairs don't get as tired. This is the most super-obvious thing I have ever written; it tickles me that Metro still couldn't get it right.
3. Metro deserves bonus points for not telling anyone about the escalators until after they get past the gate. So if you happen to have an artificial hip and need a working escalator, you're shit out of luck unless you pay another $1.35 and a whole lot more in opportunity and inconvenience costs.
This better be a temporary problem. Getting caught behind elderly women who almost collapse from exhaustion is not the best way to start my workday.