Monthly Archives: February 2008

Several minutes later, on the same ride

As we creep down the West Valley Highway (or some such interminable road), Man 1 begins to sigh loudly and roll his eyes.

Man 2: “I’m telling you, you should have taken the 565. This is the bus you take if you’re just hanging out, with nothing to do and no place to be.”


I knew I should have followed Trip Planner’s first itinerary, which actually recommended I take the 565 to my destination in Kent. It was the double transfer that put me off…

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Category: overheard | Tagged

Northbound 150, 2 PM

Two men in the front section are passing the time with small talk.

Man 1: “You have any kids?”
Man 2: “Yeah–six: two in Texas, two in California, and two in Seattle.”
Man 1: “Whoa.”
Man 2: “Papa was a rolling stone.”

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Category: overheard | Tagged

Retroactive fare increases: not OK

From Charlie in Ravenna:

I am a regular rider, and don’t have many complaints (everyone has some, right) but the fare increase really surprised me. I understand the need for an increase (like you, I disagree with the way that transit is funded, but a fare increase is better than decreased service), but I had no idea that they would apply the fare retroactively.

I purchased a twelve month pass in November 2007, so it expires in October 2008. This was before the fare increase was announced. Today, I received a letter saying that I need to pay to …

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Category: seattle stuff | Tagged ,

For better or worse, part III

For better: The 48, where everybody knows your name

On Friday, Chicklet and I traveled to the Eastside (48 + 545) to meet Bus Nerd for lunch. My parental leave is quickly dwindling, and we’re trying to get in all the family bonding time we can. I digress.

The 48 ride was one of those cool trips where it feels like you know everyone on the bus. We ran into my friend Paulette, whom I met several years ago (through Bus Nerd) on the 3. Actually, I originally met Paulette many years earlier, when I was still a child, …

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

More service!

Metro announced more Transit Now-funded service expansion yesterday, including new routes through service partnerships and more frequent service (hallelujah!) on many existing routes. I missed the press conference, but Larry Lange was on the case.

From yesterday’s PI:

Metro said Wednesday it will seek improvements to expand service on 25 King County bus routes and create four more in a cost-sharing arrangement promised in a 2006 expansion measure.

The agency will present the changes Thursday to the King County Council for approval. If passed, the changes would go into effect in September and would cost …

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Category: seattle stuff | Tagged

A doctor for Dr. 48

Even Tiger Woods has an off day…

Broken 48

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Category: spotted! | Tagged

Speaking of busing while intoxicated…

Justin from West Seattle wrote me recently about Metro’s night owl service:

Last night I discovered a route that goes past my building that I didn’t even know about, despite having been a bus commuter for a long time (Metro 54 and ST 545). …Metro provides what they call “night owl” service, and it saved me a cab right from the bar last night. I’m mailing this to you hoping that you might want to mention this service on your blog, as I bet there a thousands of bus commuters who don’t know of it.

I know …

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Category: seattle stuff | Tagged

Another term for the glossary

BWI (busing while intoxicated): Riding any form of public transportation while under the influence of alcohol or other (less legal) drugs. BWI is usually identified by the telltale scent of the intoxicating substance and its associated bizarre, antisocial, or otherwise transit-unfriendly behavior. (See also: bus foul, trife, Seahawks Special)

You can find more transit-inspired language in the bus rider’s glossary.

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Category: transit culture | Tagged ,

I’ve been meaning to tell you about…

• A car-free city in the Persian Gulf:

Groundbreaking is scheduled for Saturday for Masdar City, a nearly self-contained mini-municipality designed for up to 50,000 people rising from the desert next to Abu Dhabi’s international airport and intended as a hub for academic and corporate research on nonpolluting energy technologies.

The 2.3-square-mile community, set behind walls to divert hot desert winds and airport noise, will be car free, according to the design by Foster + Partners, the London firm that has become a leading practitioner of energy-saving architecture.

(Source: New York Times, via Bus Nerd)

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Buses on film

While we’re on the subject of transit and class, here’s a quick report on that Bus Riders Union documentary I went to see a few weeks ago:

The film basically focuses on the BRU‘s struggle to make the LA MTA more responsive to the needs of the poor and disabled, people who don’t have a choice about whether to ride. I am supportive of the organization’s goals (if not all of their tactics), but I found it unfortunate that they seemed to dwell on a (in my view, artificial) distinction between bus and rail. Apparently, the …

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Category: issues | Tagged ,