Hissy fit

Let's put an end to surprises on the T.

By Charles P. Pierce
March 6, 2011

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Dear Penelope: Being a boa constrictor, you probably will have to have someone read this to you, because you have no hands and this column cannot be read easily by the heat signals you sense. (There are newspapers you could read by that method, but many of them can’t be sent through the mails and are not of a family nature.) I am happy to learn that you have been reunited with your owner, and in time for said owner’s birthday, too, which is terrific, because it must be heartbreaking to have your personal predatory reptile miss your birthday. I hope you enjoyed your sojourn on the Red Line, but I have to admit I’m happy that someone saw fit, as Samuel L. Jackson paraphrased might put it, to get the muffuletta snake off the muffuletta train. It is my experience that no surprise on the T is ever a good one. We have a hard enough time with frozen tracks, breakdowns, and people who won’t take off their muffuletta backpacks while walking down the muffuletta aisle. Tropical reptiles are simply a complication too far. Draping oneself with a large snake tends to make fellow passengers nervous. Although, believe me, I’ve seen people wearing all kinds of things on the T. Late at night, in Allston, when the bars close, you can see people wearing each other. Now that’s scary.

Charles P. Pierce can be reached at