Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Why hate?

Now, I realise that 'hate' is a strong word, and I have been cautioned that it might upset staff to see people wearing the soon-to-be-revealed 'I hate First Great Western' badges. But I don't think that I should tone down the message, and this is why. Firstly, I think FGW staff are well aware of how rubbish their services are, as evidenced by the drivers' messages to passengers when the train grinds to a halt. Example from this morning: "The train is now approaching Reading. If you'd like a faster service to London Paddington, please get off here and cross to Platform 5, where a fast train will whisk you straight there ... probably". They have a sense of humour, and a healthy disrespect for their employers, so I don't feel we're going to be hurting their feelings. Secondly, I would make sure that this is the case by having a leaflet to hand out, explaining that our wrath is firmly directed at the company, which is a company and therefore has no feelings, or perhaps those few at those at the top of the company, who are frankly paid enough to take a bit of stick from a few fed-up travellers. And, let's be honest, when you're standing wedged against your fellow commuters at the end of a hard day, because your usual service is cancelled, and the train then stops for 45 minutes en route, you don't feel slightly peeved, you feel furious, admit it. At that moment, I bet if you had an 'I hate First Great Western' badge, you'd wear it. Well, maybe soon you can.


O.V.S.Bulleid said...

My friend

There is a lot of sympathy for you south of the Thames as my friends are getting a very poor service now with firm plans to make it worse in 2009. More expensive, slower from the London terminal that most wish to use and with seats that seem to have caused back problems for some.

Thank you for visiting our message board at BBC Radio Kent and I hope that others from your line will as well, commuters from Kent are a friendly bunch and just as put upon.

As you can see, I am a deceased engineer who I think I can claim is the equal to your own I.K.Brunel (yes we are the best of friends up here).

Just one thought, shouldn't the badges - a marvellous idea - actually say "I hate the DfT" as they are ultimately responsible for the mess that you find yourselves in and which Kent commuters are just entering.

My very best wishes to all commuters on the (passed) Great Western - now simply ruined by incompetance.

Your sincerely

I hate FGW said...

Thank you O.V.S for your kind comments from beyond the grave. Having looked you up I must say you had a most impressive and distinguished career, and I am sorry about how disappointed you must be with the current state of our formerly great railway system. I think your 'I hate the DfT' idea is interesting, but surely most car drivers are already paid-up members of that club? I feel we need to target something more dentable than a government department, though I agree they are the ultimate villains of the piece. Thanks again for your kind wishes and stay in touch.