Monthly Archives: December 2009

Southbound 4, 1:55 PM

Two early twentysomething women are talking relationships in the seat directly in front of me.

Early twentysomething woman 1: “He even helped me clean up the apartment. Like, I asked him to put the dishes away and give the dog some water, and he did it.”

ETW2: “That’s really cool. John would totally have been watching TV.”

ETW1: “I know. He’s a good guy, from a nice family. They’re atheists, but he’s a really good person.”

Nameless shero?

On Saturday, Bus Nerd and I spent an evening out alone (thanks, Dawn and Juanya!) and decided to check out a restaurant we’d been meaning to try on Queen Anne. On the 4 ride home, we sat directly across from the latest Operator of the Year/Vehicle Maintenance Employee of the Year photos, and Bus Nerd pointed out that the blurb next to the OOY’s photo doesn’t include her name. Check it:

Fabulous bus maintainer, Rich Green
Exceptional bus driver with no name

I assume this was an oversight that was simply too expensive to fix. So, for those who are wondering: It’s Ineke DeBoer.

Upcoming events for transit types

MEHVA Santa’s Lights Tour
What: Metro Employees Historic Vehicle Association‘s annual, vintage-bus tour of “Seattle’s best holiday lights.”
When: Saturday, December 12th, 7 PM – 10 PM
Where: Buses depart from–and return to–2nd & Main.
How much: $5 (Children under 5 are free.)

First Hill Streetcar Community Open Houses
What: The First Hill Streetcar (which we Puget Sound voters approved as part of ST2) is now scheduled to break ground in 2011. The open houses will present the streetcar’s “alignment options” and provide an opportunity for public feedback.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009
6 PM – 8 PM
Seattle Central Community College
101 Broadway

Wednesday, December 16, 2009
6 PM – 8 PM
Yesler Community Center
917 E. Yesler Way

Thursday, December 17, 2009
6 PM — 8 PM
Union Station
401 S. Jackson

How much: Free, of course

Link’s Seatac Station opening
What: Light rail service to the airport begins.
When: Saturday, December 19th, 10 AM
Where: Seatac Airport, my holiday-traveling friends
How much: Train fare

Holiday decorating, bus-chick style

Spotted at 15th & Thomas* at 8 AM(ish):

Christmas trees for car-free types
“Delivery services offered by Zipcar”
Transporting a tree--car-free!
Or not

(And again, sorry for the low quality phone photo.)

*Wondering what I was doing out in the cold early on a Saturday morning? This Saturday was haircut day, and–thank the Good Lord–Metro extended the 8’s service just in time for my beautician‘s move to Capitol Hill.

Evidence that driving less helps cure cancer

On Monday, my brother, Jeremy, was chosen as December Employee of the Month at his workplace. (As if I needed another reason to be proud of him.) The reward for this unexpected honor: a choice parking spot near the entrance of the building. Though Jeremy’s not exactly car-free (he shares a car with his girlfriend), he lives a few blocks from his office and walks to work every day. So, being the resourceful (and kind!) soul that he is, he decided to pass on his temporary parking privilege to whichever coworker pledged the most money–in memory of our mother–to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. The winning pledge was $75.

Good work, little brother. Mom may not have been down with undriving, but I know she would have been proud.

Fifty-four years ago today…

A very brave woman started something big.

Not surprisingly, segregated city buses weren’t Mrs. Parks’ only experience with unequal transportation. During her school years in Pine Level, Alabama, white students were provided with school buses while black children were forced to walk.

“The bus,” she said in an interview, “was among the first ways I realized there was a black world and a white world.”

Certainly, there are remnants of this separation today (including on the bus*), but I am so grateful that Mrs. Parks (and many, many others) sacrificed their livelihoods and personal safety so that I could take for granted my right to ride.

Detroit's Rosa Parks Transit Center
The new Rosa Parks Transit Center, as seen from the Detroit People Mover (photo courtesy of My Gail‘s husband, Hodge)

“Memories of our lives, our works and our deeds, live on in others.” – Rosa Parks

RIP, Original Bus Chick. Much respect.

*I just read an interesting (if not particularly recent) article about the state of Montgomery transit (and equality) at the Millennium. (via: Streetsblog Network)