- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Webster’s Dictionary doesn’t define “conseaterate,” but subway and bus riders will learn the meaning from new signs.

A Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority ad campaign introduced yesterday is aimed at getting riders to change some behaviors. For example, a “doorker” is defined as a “person who crowds or blocks Metro doors, making it difficult for others to exit or enter promptly.”

“There’s one called ‘conseaterate,’ which is a blending of the words considerate and seat,” Metro spokeswoman Cathy Asato said. “And the meaning for that is ‘thoughtful toward others who are more in need of a Metrorail or Metrobus seat.’”

Other words to add to passengers’ vocabulary are a sign of the times in this post-September 11 world.

“PlanBdextrous” describes a person “able to plan an alternate route home in case Metro is inaccessible due to unforeseen circumstances,” while “sumpnspicious” is a noun defined as an “unattended package or odd, unusual behavior that is reported” to authorities.

Miss Asato said riders are “bombarded with a lot of messages” and that Metro sees the unusual signs as a way to get their attention amid the other ads, IPods and newspapers competing for attention.

The ads are dubbed “sniglets,” a word invented by comedian Rich Hall to describe words that should be in the dictionary but aren’t. The campaign was created by the LM&O; advertising agency, which has a $1.73 million contract this year with Metro.

This is not the first time Metro has used humor to get a message across. In December, the transit agency began a campaign to discourage eating and drinking in the system. One sign with a large picture of a cockroach has the slogan, “If we let people eat and drink on the train, we’d get a lot of new riders.”

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