Craigslist Researchers Drop Some Knowledge on the Secret of Boston’s Lustiest T-Stops

Public transportation is a dirty endeavour. Convenience and positive environmental impact aside, once that bell sounds and the subway doors slide shut, you and your fellow passengers are temporarily encased in a hurtling Petri dish of microbial nightmares. Not a very romantic situation, but the intrepid researchers at Craigslist have taken up the task of empirically analyzing just how romantic a subway ride can get.

Over an 11-week period, they accrued nearly 200 Missed Connections posts that specifically mentioned stations or lines on the Boston Transit System. The conclusion? Park Street has been named "Boston's Most Romantic Station," and the Red Line its "Most Romantic Train Line." Just broke up with a significant other, and the thought of gushy, eyelash-batting subway passengers make you want to hurl? Head to the romance-free zone at Maverick Station, the least romantic stop on Boston's least romantic line, the Blue Line, aka where love goes to die.

Okay, this all sounds believable, but, you may be asking yourself, doesn't Park Street simply have more Missed Connections because it's such a busy station, the switch-point between the Red and Green line in the center of the city? A brief foray into methodology: the Craigslist investigators accounted for this statistical inconsistency by creating the Train Romance Index Score Total (playfully abbreviated as TRIST), a metric that measures the number of Missed Connections posts per passenger. Park Street logged 40 total mentions in the ads, and a TRIST score of 20.67, putting it comfortably ahead of the second most romantic station, Davis, which had 18 mentions and a score of 16.58.

In fact, the top seven TRIST station scorers were on the Red Line, which notched a composite of 6.10, shattering the Orange Line's 3.75 score, a distant second place. Blue, being the color of asphyxiation, barely registered with a piddly score of 0.90 and just three ad postings for the whole line.

Stats courtesy of the October 14, 2010 Craigslist press release, "A Study of Love on the Line."

In a postscript to the study, the researchers hypothesize that Park Street might also be Boston's most literary station, as many posts referencing Park Street also mentioned distinguished literary works. Cute blond on the train reading bukowski and Moby Dick on Red Line are just two (of the more hilarious) examples. Perhaps all those potential Romeos and Juliets were heading toward the Boston Book Festival at Copley two weekends ago? We've got podcasts from all the panel events up at Still find yourself craving more inspirational tales of subway love, passion, fear, and loss? On November 16, the storytelling devotees at massmouth will be holding their second annual Boston "T" Party, an open-mic style event during which ten subway-riding Bostonians will share stories based on the theme "it happened to me on the T." It is entirely likely that these stories will focus less on Missed Connections and more on Psychologically Damaging Forced Connections, but lucky for us, the latter are far more entertaining. Contact Diana Weisner about telling a story, or just soak up the travails of others. The event will be held at The Precinct in Union Square, and starts at 6:30 p.m.

Let the love and the literature floweth!
| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Phlog Archives