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Mark Atwood
Morning thoughts, on the Charlie Card, Dunkin' Donuts, Panhandling Doormen, and Smart Walk
A Dunkin' Donuts is physically configured and crew trained such that you can be handed a breakfast sandwich, a donut, and a black coffee about as fast as you can say that (and here in Boston, people can say that extremely quickly), but when you ask for any sort of "speciality coffee", such as a latte, ven though it is prominently featured at the top of their menu board, their well-designed and well-practiced pattern stumbles, and it takes a while for them to prep and present your drink.

It looks like nearly everyone in Boston has a Charlie Card. Why now isn't the MBTA building on that success, and going down the path blazed by Hong Kong's Octopus card, and having it start to displace small retail transactions, such as for my breakfast sandwich and latte? Well, other than we are talking about an agency of the government of Massachusetts, which is all the explanation necessary.

A pan-handler at the door to that Dunkin' Donuts has got a working gimmick. As I approached, he smiled, said "good morning", and opened the door for me. As I was leaving, he opened it for me again. He got the change in my hand for it. My feelings about this kind of transaction are complex. But, he did get my change, and very few spare-changers do.

It's a nice 10 minute walk from where I am couch-surfing (thank you, Deb of the FSF) to where I am set up to sit and work (and thank you, Sheeri and Pythian). The walk was especially nice today and yesterday, what with the sun shining and it being acceptably not-cold. The days before, it was either rainy, windy, bitingly cold, or all three.

When I am out walking quickly in the sun, my brain is full of energy and ideas and problem solutions. But when I sit down at the desk, it's like my skull has filled with sludge. I need a way to be able to write and to code while I'm on my feet walking around outside.

This entry was originally posted at http://fallenpegasus.dreamwidth.org/832531.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

Current Location: Pythian Boston Offices, Central Square, Cambridge MA

2 comments or Leave a comment
awfief From: awfief Date: March 19th, 2010 03:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Dunkin' Donuts wouldn't partner with the MBTA + Charlie card because they have their OWN rechargeable gift card.
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 19th, 2010 06:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Everybody has a rechargable gift card. Most of them are run behind the scenes by a special division of Visa.
2 comments or Leave a comment