Monthly Archives: August 2007

August Golden Transfer

Golden TransferThis month’s Golden Transfer goes to Pierre Sunborg, a retired engineer who has made an actual hobby of riding the bus.

Pierre was interviewed on The Beat last Friday (good lookin’ out, Sarah). If you have time, listen to it–if for no other reason than to find proof that I’m not the only one who thinks riding the bus is fun.

A former world traveler, Pierre found himself Seattle-bound several years ago when his parents began to require full-time care. His wife encouraged him to try riding the …

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Transportation safety

Safety first!In my last post, I mentioned that Bus Nerd recently (last weekend, in fact) took a trip to Chicago. As is our custom, I “saw him off” by accompanying him on the bus ride to the airport. Unfortunately, Bus Nerd’s departing flight left at 11:30 PM, which meant, of course, that I’d miss the last 194 and would be returning home–after dark, no less–on its ugly steproute, the 174.

It’s not like me to be skittish about riding at night (I happen to love it, as long as …

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Category: living the life, transit culture | Tagged , , , ,

Things that might confuse a Metro newbie (or, “Because we said so!”)

If you catch a northbound 43 at 23rd & John, you pay as you leave; however, if you catch a northbound 48 at 23rd & John, you pay as you enter. Similarly, if you catch an eastbound 545 at the Montlake Freeway Station, you pay as you leave, but if you catch the (much slower) 242 from the same location, and headed in the same direction, you’ll have to pay as you enter.

If you catch a southbound 48 at Montlake (the street-level stop) at 6:39 PM, it will take you all the way to Rainier Beach. If …

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Happy birthday, Mom

Some past Real Change columns in honor of Caroline:

Back on the 8
Sweet Caroline

If you’ve read this blog for any length of time, you’ve already seen these, but I’m hoping you’ll indulge me. I miss her something awful.

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Survey says…

Councilmember Bob Ferguson, of April Golden Transfer fame, recently surveyed his District 1 constituents about their priorities. (District 1 includes North Seattle, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Kenmore, Bothell and some of Woodinville.) Here’s what they had to say about transit:

2. If you are a bus rider, what is the most important way that Metro can improve bus service?

37% More, different routes
29% Greater Frequency
11% Fewer transfers to get where we’re going
11% Safer, cleaner buses
7% More bus shelters
5% Reduced fares

[...]

3. When paying for improvements to our …

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One year ago today…

Bus Nerd and I got hitched:

Wedding bus (photo by Chrystal Fisher)

So far, it’s been quite a ride.

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Category: living the life | Tagged ,

Drive less, but park more

It looks like New York got its federal grant ($354.5 million–oh, if only!), with a few strings. Here’s how the money is supposed to be used:

• $10.4 million to implement congestion pricing
• $213.6 million for bus facilities and other improvements
• $112.7 million to begin Bus Rapid Transit (BRT)
• $15.8 million for regional ferry service
• $2 million for research

The funding from the USDOT is conditioned on actions by the New York State Legislature and the New York City Council. Congestion pricing must be approved within 90 days of the …

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Westbound 27 stop, 3:05 PM

A young woman is waiting for the bus with an older woman and a little girl (possibly her mother and daughter). All are reading books just checked out from the library. After a few minutes of not talking, the young woman points to the bus stop across the street.

Young woman, to older woman: “Remember that fight I was telling you about? That’s where it happened.”

Older woman: “Oh yeah?”

YM: “She had the bombest Air Forces, and Lee stepped on them. So she was like, ‘Lee, aren’t you going to say excuse me?’ Lee said ‘no,’ so she got …

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Westbound 545, 7:30-ish

Two men are discussing a recent dental appointment.

Guy 1: “She said they were all abscessed. All 18 of those teeth are bad. She could’ve pulled them all today, and I wouldn’t have cared.”

Guy 2: “Why didn’t she?”

Guy 1: “She wanted to make sure I could pay for it. If you can’t pay, they won’t do anything.”

Guy 2: “It’s just as well, though. You would’ve been walking around with half your grill missing.”

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Bus reading

Some of the many books I’ve seen folks reading on buses (and at stops) of late:

10,000 Splendid Suns

Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment

Clan of the Cave Bear (I’m ashamed to admit I read this when I was 12.)

The Color of Magic

Diatoms to Dinosaurs: The Size and Scale of Living Things

The Dispossessed (It’s been a minute since I’ve read Le Guin.)

Hamlet

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (times a bazillion)

Hackers and Painters

The Namesake

The Sun Also Rises

Witch Gate

I’m busy reading The Death …

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