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The New Manchester Dictionary: Metrolink

The first chapter of our New Manchester Dictionary contains useful vocabulary for travelling by tram

Published on February 3rd 2010.

The New Manchester Dictionary: Metrolink

Altrincham/Bury Black Hole
A phenomenon used to explain a situation where up to five trams pass on the other track but none arrive at your station. Usage: “Is there a bloody black hole in Bury, swallowing all the trams up?”

Met-love: An unintended sexual act occasioned by intimate clothed contact on a packed commuter tram.

Big Bang
The combustible situation on Metrolink stations when several passengers explode in frustration simultaneously due to late trams and no announcements.

Broadway (and Harbour City)
An act of design whereby tram stations are placed too far away from places people want to visit, such as The Lowry and Imperial War Museum North. Usage: "You could get the Met to Broadway for the Lowry, but then you'd get soaked if it's raining. I'd drive if I were you."

The clouded sight of a tram driver who doesn't wait for passengers from an approaching tram to board before setting off. Through passengers then have to wait 'up to 12 minutes' (see below) for another tram to arrive.

Eccles line syndrome
A condition whereby passengers are so used to the non-running or delayed running of services on the Eccles line that they now believe cancellations or lateness is the norm.

Eccles line syndrome (part II)
A belief held by many that since it's only the line to Eccles, a humble town with low commuter traffic, Metrolink can't really be bothered with it and wish it would go away.

The sensation felt when Manchester United fans on the way to the match, who've all had too much to drink, are thumping the walls and sides of the vehicle making animal sounds.

When passengers standing at a Metrolink platform receive no announcements to tell them what is happening. Usage: “I'm being Met-blanked at St Peter's Square so I've no idea what time I'll be home.”

The sinking feeling caused by arriving at a tram station to see a crowd of people who have obviously been waiting for some time.

A rare phenomenon which occurs when the ticket machine works, the tram arrives on time, and you get a seat, all on the same journey. Met-joy can lead to a spontaneous platform Met-party when on three concurrent days there are no delays or problems on the trams at all.

An unintended sexual act occasioned by intimate clothed contact on a packed commuter tram.

Poverty arising from the regular purchase of peak time tram tickets. Usage: “Can you lend me a fiver to get the tram to work? I'm Metroskint.”

A common Metrolink ticket machine anomaly, unique to the system, where apparently normal UK currency is too 'slippery' to be of use in the ticket machine.

Surfing the Met
Trying to stay on your feet when overcrowding means you're stuck in the middle of the carriage with no access to a hand-loop or rail.

To be prevented from getting to work (or place of leisure) due to unannounced failure of tram vehicle to arrive. Usage: “Cancel that morning meeting – I'm tram-grounded at Bowker Vale.”

Up to 12 minutes
A notional length of time invented by Metrolink to explain any delays. In reality the delays can be any length of time.

We apologise
A phrase which through over-use on the Metrolink system has become meaningless.

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16 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousFebruary 3rd 2010.

What happened to your interview with Mr. Purdy et al? Did it disappear down the same Bury Black Hole as the interview with the leader of our great city?

Jonathan Schofield - editorFebruary 3rd 2010.

We've been busy as mad bees stung into action by change.....or something like that. Purdy and Morris about Metrolink goes up on Wednesday 10th February. Sir Richard Leese interview will headline all this weekend from Friday. For the twelve days late arrival of the latter I'm going to attempt to get the tram every morning for a week as penance.

DeadlinesFebruary 3rd 2010.

Genius.Met-love: An unintended sexual act occasioned by intimate clothed contact on a packed commuter tram.

Thomas TankFebruary 3rd 2010.

What about Met-stench: the vicious aroma from the person you are co-joined with having Met-sex.

goggleFebruary 3rd 2010.

Anon, you must be a right joy to be with if you are gagging to read those interviews.

Tuesday on WednesdayFebruary 3rd 2010.

Is there an Eccles line? When did that happen?

LesssnowFebruary 4th 2010.

I like it. What about Met-wet, not being able to fit under the canopy of the tiny shelters at Stretford.

Ray MakinFebruary 4th 2010.

How can a metro-attendant explain a mid-morning wait of 50 minutes by saying that trams are "running 30 minutes late today because of bad weather" When I said that I could understand that if I was waiting for the first tram of the day but surely, by now, I would expect to get on a tram that should have been here 50 mins ago!

AnonymousFebruary 4th 2010.

Met love, also known as assault.

OpportunistFebruary 4th 2010.

Met-love, more reliable than dating websites

Long SuffererFebruary 4th 2010.

I'd like to add:‘new ticket machines’ – a much-promised facility mysteriously only installed at stops where people are least likely to need to buy a ticket eg St Peter’s Square.
By the way, has anyone else noticed how much the new trams sway from side to side? I felt travel sick the first time I got on one the other day!

AnonymousFebruary 5th 2010.

The new trams sway because they are too wide for the track.

There are also less seats, but its all right because there is far more standing space, so more people can be rammed in at excessive prices.

AnonymousFebruary 5th 2010.

Met-Weather: Conditions that allow every other bit of Manchester's transport network to function correctly, with the exception of the Metrolink

Osei WilkinsonFebruary 5th 2010.

The roumour that the new trams are to wide for the tracks is false. The reason they (sometimes) sway more than the old ones is due to different suspension.

Harvey PFebruary 7th 2010.

Helpless with laughter over this. So bloody true.

John HarrisFebruary 16th 2010.

How about Met-Chav?<br><br>The hoodie'd thug who is ripping the seats to bits, scrawling graffiti on the windows, and threatening any other passenger who looks up but is, mysteriously, completely invisible to the driver or ticket inspectors

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