Back to the glossary

I’ve neglected my bus glossary for a minute (OK, three years–last entry was May, 2008) and have really been meaning to return some focus to transit terminology. Fortunately, my Saturday 17 ride (home from celebrating my brother’s birthday) provided some much-needed inspiration.

The gentleman sitting directly behind me used one of my favorite transit terms, “bus legs,” in a conversation with his seat mate*. I wasn’t able to hear the context, given the general noise level on the bus (and the fact that I was trying to accommodate competing story requests from my tiny travel companions), but I’m guessing it was related to the heavy traffic and somewhat erratic driving. (What is it about the 17 and erratic driving?)

“Bus legs” is a term I use often but have never bothered to formally define. So, for those who don’t know:

Bus legs, n: The ability to effectively balance oneself while standing or walking on a moving bus, no matter how unpredictable the traffic or inexperienced the driver. Ex. I’ve got bus legs, so I don’t need to hold on.

I guess that’s one way to ride the wave.

* Speaking of transit terminology, there’s got to be a better way to describe the person you sit next to on a bus or train.

11 thoughts on “Back to the glossary

  1. jkh1948

    When I was in jr high (this was Before Computers) we had to ride chartered city buses. Some kids practiced their “surfing” in the aisles…it was an informal contest to see who could stand the longest without grabbing a support.

  2. Nicholas Barnard

    This makes a bunch of sense. I’m pretty good on the bus legs, although I can’t manage it on the 27 stop getting off at my apartment at 6th and Yesler. There is just too much going on there with the uphill slope, then the stop that’ll push you back a bit..

    1. BusChick Post author

      Yeah, that hill headed east on Yesler from DT is no joke. (I’ve always wondered about the wisdom of having an apartment building for seniors on that hill.)

      I don’t even attempt to show off my skills when traveling with C & B. I could probably manage to remain upright even while holding a hand and carrying a small human + a bag, but it’s (obviously) not very safe. Plus, I need to model good bus behavior for my transit geeks in training. ;)

      1. Nicholas Barnard

        Heh so true. I actually managed to have bus legs at that stop tonight.. Although this was the odd 11 pm 27 run which is on a low floor hybrid 60ft articulated buses, not one of the 40ft diesel gilligs. Somehow the 60 footer seemed smoother.

        Although, I think the senior apartment building is there because thats a close location to Pill Hill..

        That senior building completely encases my building, on both sides…

  3. Veronica

    buspanion, (n): a companion for an indeterminate amount of time while riding a bus. “My buspanion recommended ‘Speed’ as a good film for a second date.”

    1. BusChick Post author

      Like. Let’s go with it.

      P.S. – Did the Speed recommendation happen in real life? If so, did you act on it–and how did it go?

      1. Veronica

        Hooray! One more word brought lovingly into the lexicon.

        P.S. The Speed recommendation never happened, but if it did, I would be the one using that flick as a screening device.

  4. BusChick Post author

    Aw, thanks. All is well with the Bus Fam; I’m just a bit swamped with work. Things will return to normal in the next week or so.

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