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BIBLIOGRIND

Adventures in Writing, Reading & Book Culture

On & Off the Tram

I was coming home from a morning class, and the tram slowed precipitately. Someone had parked a car with its nose sticking into the road. Trams are prevented from ramming such ill-positioned vehicles, so the tram driver was a bit stimied.

I was sitting near the front, and saw this dilemma, which continued when the driver phoned into her disptach mgr. A moment’s conversation moved her to the door onto the passenger deck: She spoke various Czech words, using a minorly desperate tone. Two men got up and walked to her door, which opened onto the one outside door. I quickly followed.

What I saw dumbfounded me (briefly). Two and then four and then six men knelt at the front of the offending car, and began to rock it up and down. I was walking quickly down the street, as home was a mere 3 blocks away. The men rocked and nudged, rocked and shoved. Evidently, the dispatch operator had asked the driver to recruit passengers to go pick up the fucking car to move it out of the way.

For obvious reasons, I didn’t chalk this up to Czech ingenuity.

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