"To get to the G is such a monumental hike, it's two buses plus a long walk." Nkonde — a member of the Rider's Alliance organization that has been pushing for more frequent and consistent G-train service and better communication with riders — said one date with a resident off the Myrtle-Willoughby G station scarred her from ever dating along the line again."The thing about the G is it comes middle of platform so if you're dressed in high heels you have to run what feels like 7 miles to catch the train," she said of the line's short length.
The strong sentiment of straphangers like Nkonde has even prompted a local comedian to make a video about a young man's horror when he learns his date lives off the G train.
"The Brooklyn Date," which Tyler Fischer created after "hearing people talk badly about the G train all the time," follows a couple on their first magical date — which comes crashing to a halt when the woman asks the man back to her apartment.
I am here to find out if old-fashioned speed dating might hold something over the app experience.
It's an odd set up: a PR stunt demonstrating the luxury of the Virgin Trains first class experience, and the nippy speed at which it covers the distance between London and York (a little over two hours).
Every 10 minutes, men are asked to shuffle between tables, navigating the Virgin Trains staff on hand to keep the nervy mob pleasantly sloshed. The selection of punters aboard the Love Carriage isn't entirely representative of the usual speed dating or app selection.
The scene is made all the more bizarre by the inclusion of Fred Sirieix, swaying down the carriage, his trademark Gallic charm intact, but weathered. Tearing out my still-beating heart with more haste than Virgin Trains can transport its passengers from King's Cross to York (£56.50 for an off-peak single. Aged between 24 and 35, the majority of us work in some area of the media industry."Tinder is shit," a tight-t-shirt clad 20-something announces to his first speed date.She nods, politely, grabbing for a champagne flute threatening to tumble from their shared table."When you get there [to the Myrtle-Willoughby station] it looks ' Law and Order'-ish."It looks like a crime scene." A representative for the MTA declined to comment for the story.The beloved host of "I just want to lick his face," mutters the woman I'm attempting to share a bowl of popcorn with. Attendees appear confident, extrovert, attractive - no one seems to be having a bad time, and it's difficult to imagine any of this bunch posing next to a drugged-up tiger.