In 1940, Millard (Blackie) Seay took a job as a traffic checker with the Capital Transit Co., counting passengers on buses.

Almost 30 years later, Millard (Butch) Seay became a traffic checker for the D.C. Transit System.

Today, father and son are officials in the scheduling department of the Metro transit authority, with combined experience of 55 years in the field.

"When I was in high school and college, I swore I would never do what he was doing," says the younger Seay, 34. But after starting a part-time job with Metro, he discovered he had both an aptitude for and an interest in scheduling and made it his career.

The elder Seay, 63, who helps schedule 1,500 buses, 43 Metro trains and the work assignments of 3,100 workers, has three other children. He says he didn't push his son into the job, but he's pleased he took it.

"Scheduling is an art form that is dying out," says the junior Seay. The first nine months he worked at scheduling, father and son would sit over the breakfast table at home for six hours every Saturday so father could pass along the knowledge no college can teach.

Says Butch Seay: "You need to study with a skilled craftsman."