Saturday, October 24, 2015

Free Space!

What's the best part about playing bingo?

The Obama-themed daubers? Yeah, they're pretty good. 
(I have one, it's real and it's spectacular) 

The Blue Hairs going on about what Matlock is up to this week? Maybe.
(spoiler: He's up to a lot of down home Southern lawyering)

The feeling of righteous indignation and when someone says bingo and doesn't actually have it and you keep playing? That is excellent, but no. 

The best part of Bingo...

The FREE SPACE! The one you get without lifting a finger. You one you get without even trying, like the universe wanted you to win. Offload Bingo has you covered there, too.

How does FREE SPACE work with Offload Bingo? Think sudden death match - the next player offloaded anywhere in the system gets a bingo. It's that simple. First come, first served, first then offloaded due to service issues, is the winner. 

@Offloadbingo will be calling a FREE SPACE the last week of the game - keep a look out for it! 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Metro Offload Bingo!

If you’ve taken the Metro for your daily commute for more than a few months, you’ve been offloaded.
But now that doesn’t have to suck. Well… not suck quite so bad….
Welcome to Metro Offload Bingo!
Starting October 15, 2015 and through the end of the month, I will announce a randomly selected Metro core station for the AM and PM WEEKDAY rush (from opening to 10:00am, and 3:00pm to 7:00pm) and one non-core station for the day every day. If a train is offloaded during those times at the randomly selected stops, it’s your lucky day! Announcements will be made via twitter from @offloadbingo.

Rather than being the first one off the train, stop where you are and tweet about it! Be the first to tweet @offloadbingo to let me know about the offload, and I’ll send you a shirt that will commemorate the event in the color of the Metro line that did you wrong!

This one probably won't result in a cease and desist letter.
Now with two designs to choose from! Such T-shirt! 

Here's version 3

For example – October 15, 2015: Day 1: AM rush: Dupont Circle / PM rush: Rosslyn / All Day: Silver Spring

Oh god…. I’m going to end up spending a lot of money on shirts on day 1, both Dupont and Silver Spring had offloads in the last couple of days.


  • I announce offload bingo stops the day before and the day of their selection on twitter via @offloadbingo, with the date and AM/PM rush for core station and non-core station for the day. 
  • If a train is offloaded at that stop, on that date, at the corresponding rush time for core stops, the FIRST person to tweet to me is a winner! Photos make things better! 
  • I need to confirm that the offload really happened. If others tweet about it (usually to @unsuckdcmetro), or you take a photo/video, that's easiest. Otherwise I'll (try) and confirm the train going out of service with WMATA customer service. 
  • I ask you what size you want, get the shirt printed, and send it to you. 
  • Take photos of yourself and tell your friends how cool you are.


What counts as an "offloading"?
Good question. That's when you're on a train going to an end-of-the-line station and it goes out of service before it gets there. There's usually a couple every week during rush hours.

Is this a promotion for something?
No, I just thought it would be a funny idea. And I like the idea of custom-made t-shirts.
Are you worried about too many winners?
Sweet baby Jesus, yes. ONE winner per station call, even if there are multiple offloadings. But I’m hopeful I can manage to statistically dodge the bullet for 2 weeks. We’ll see. It's like gambling, I can stop any time I want. C'mon WMATA, don't fail me now!
Are you worried about cheats?
A little, but between @metrorailinfo and the people typically report offloads to @unsuckdcmetro, I think it’ll be OK and I can still confirm things before spending $20 on a shirt printed online. I do worry about a conductor that offloads their own train for a free shirt... but no, they wouldn't do that. No. No... I'm more worried that Metro is going to put me out $500 for t-shirts and then I have to explain this to my wife.
Is this a front for a T-shirt sales operation?
Nope, this is a one person (talking in third person, no less) for fun operation. Nothing for sale, just a satirical gag gift. This is a gift I’m making for a friend I’ve never met in person is all.
What was your method for randomly selecting stations?
Excel spreadsheet. I divided Core/non-core stations up and I’m just going through them in order from a random number generation from lowest to highest. Meaning almost every core stop gets picked as I just go in order since I'm skipping weekends (five don't make it), and then 16 out of a lot of non-core stations, not including end of the line stations. I just did those each with a random number and sorted them in order, so not all of them are going to make the list.

What's a core station?
The 29 stations listed on page 21 of this document.
What is the meaning of life?
I dunno…. Make the world and humanity better than how you found it, I guess. That might be too much to ask. Maybe just be nice to people.
Does a train offloading at the end of the line count?
No.... but I should probably say that. Trains need to be scheduled to go somewhere and not make it to their scheduled stop. So for day 1: all day Silver Spring, trains needed to be originally going past that and get offloaded (like happened on Oct 14 I think) to count. For that reason no

Your mileage may vary. Terms and conditions apply, I guess. Void where prohibited by law. Offer not valid in AK, HI, Guam and Puerto Rico (what did they ever do?). I do reserve the right to stop giving out shirts at like 5 or 7...just in case Metro has a bad couple of weeks. Must be 18 or older to play. Please consult a doctor for offloadings lasting more than 4 hours.