Reporting on pedestrian life in the D.C. area

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has died ... because of 'train fatigue'

December 19, 2011 - 08:00 AM
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Testament to weary commuters. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

What exactly is "train fatigue"?

I ride trains frequently enough and am, truly enough, at times fatigued. But I never suspected the state could grow into a lethal one. Last night the world learned otherwise as North Korea announced the death of its leader, Kim Jong Il, a man full of both quirk and controversy. What claimed him?  He fell to "train fatigue" last Saturday morning. Train fatigue — a force powerful enough to claim one of the world's most notorious cults of personality. The leader was about 69 years old and has ruled the communist country, closed to much outside influence, since 1994.

During great news events such as this, the occasional tweet can rise to the moment, speaking deeper truths we all wonder and think. The death of Kim Jong Il raises this question of train fatigue, and specifically whether we Metro riders should fear the same fate. Let's hear the thought posed from native Washingtonian and blogger known as WashingTina moments after news of the leader's death broke: 

#KimJongIl died of fatigue on a train. Crap. That's how I feel every time I ride Metro. I didn't know it was fatal. #wmata
Dec 19 via Twitter for BlackBerry®FavoriteRetweetReply

Her thought was retweeted scores of times, reflecting the local resonance present at hearing of this international event.

In light of Kim Jong Il's death, expect posts to come later in the week on the subject of North Korean transportation, one way or another. I also look forward to learning more details of what "train fatigue" entails.

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