My wife was taking the train from Harlem to Connecticut, fifteen bucks. I picked her up and she reported gleefully that the conductor didn’t collect tickets for whatever reason. She regards the ticket as a freebie and I don’t.

My argument is that it’s stealing, it’s wrong! Furthermore I noted that if we had fewer people like my wife who’d take advantage of such a situation then, in addition to my not having a wife, we wouldn’t need to pay these conductors to collect tickets and the tickets would be a little cheaper or maybe the seats would be nicer, thereby lowering her incentive, which isn’t that large anyway as again fifteen bucks ain’t bad (if this were Amtrak then I’d be on her side), to freeload.

This is turning into a fundamental difference between us so I figured why not enlist you to settle this for me as I’ve got to go to Connecticut this week to try to crack some man’s iTunes m4a DRM (ugh) and I could either use the ticket and feel dirty, buy another like everyone else and write it off as a business expense, which by the way since that would be during off peak hours would only be like ten bucks, or I suppose I could sort of compromise weirdly and take the ticket from her, tell her good thing at least one of us has some street smarts and make her feel good and just not use it and hope she doesn’t check our joint account with her new TD Bank app which, even though it would break the seal I have of not having lied to her, it would make both me, her, Metro North and perhaps God happy if he’s tuned into this situation.

Speaking of God, a fringe benefit of doing the right thing, some might regard that as at the very least not increasing my odds of dealing with lakes of fire, no AC and whatever else for eternity. But let’s not go there (so to speak), kind of minor, a one way train fare dilemma, to compare this to Pascal’s wager.

So, ethical clarification please? In return, a pretty lady in the wild:

Don’t use that offering against me by turning this into a copyright debate, double standards and whatever, okay? I don’t see one of those annoying watermarks, in addition to being in public she’s in the public domain for all we know. And the man’s iTunes stuff, to my knowledge, is legit; he’s just one of many Apple customers that got themselves jammed up in the DRM trap by buying too many new Apple products and music.

Doug Simmons

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Biographical info.. hmm. I have a history of not being able to strike the balance between what is “safe” to put into these forms and what is, in my mind at least, funny. Can’t do it.

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