Tag Archives: Glossary

Rider for life

OBC, n: Original bus chick. A person who has actively chosen transit over other forms of transportation for several decades; an extremely experienced transit rider.

Beulah's bus stop

A couple of years ago, King County Metro installed a bus shelter memorializing Beulah Dyer, a lifelong Seattle transit rider who passed away in 2011, at the age of 90. Born in Ballard in 1921, Mrs. Dyer started riding transit at a very young age. She never stopped.

She never tried to get a driver’s …

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Category: people, seattle stuff | Tagged , , ,

Bus riders have sense

Stop sense, n: The ability to detect when one’s transit destination is approaching without looking out the window or at the digital display at the front of the vehicle; a subconscious awareness of the location of one’s transit stop.

Not to brag (ahem), but I have a highly developed stop sense. When I was nine, I would automatically wake up from bus naps about a block before it was time for me to ring the bell. These days, I can feel my stop approaching no matter where I’m looking or how many children I’m managing.

But yesterday, I started …

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Category: transit culture | Tagged , ,

The transfer trade

Transfer trade, n: The system of exchanging bus tickets, paper transfers, and bus passes for money or other items of value.

One thing I love about public transit is the mini economy that develops among riders. There’s always something for sale on buses and at stops: watches, flowers, cigarettes, tickets, candy. And, of course, transfers.

Though much more common before Orca cards became the norm for payment, the transfer trade is alive and well in Seattle. So are the many related practices. Some examples: “passing …

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Category: transit culture | Tagged ,

Eastbound 4, 3:05 PM

A bus-wide discussion about how hot everyone is (par for the course on any [non-air-conditioned] Seattle bus on any day above 80 degrees) is in full swing before we even reach Harborview. Folks express all the usual (uninteresting) weather-related sentiments, until a middle-aged man sitting directly behind the driver adds his two cents.

“I’m about to go home and get naked. Yep, I’m going to get naked with a little, tiny fan.”

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Category: overheard, transit culture | Tagged , ,

Happy birthday, Chicklet!

It’s been four years since I brought my sweet girl into the world—and home on the 4.

Yesterday, I was in a nostalgic mood, so I reread my post from her first birthday. People, my baby has been around.

In her first year of life, my child has ridden the following routes:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 21, 23, 25, 26, 27, 36, 41, 44, 48, 54, 55, 56, 60, 66, 70, 74, …

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Category: busing with babies | Tagged , ,

Bus luh

bus luh
Awww…

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Category: spotted! | Tagged ,

Bus (driver) luh

Aww…

Bus drivers in love

And yes, I know this is a terrible, terrible (phone) photo, but I absolutely could not resist posting it. Tell me I was wrong.

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More glossary excavation (or, relief from all the baby talk)

Recently, I found myself sitting at a coffee shop a few feet from one of my bus crushes from back in the day. It reminded me of this post (and this one)—and of the whole bus crush phenomenon.

Bus crush, n:

1. Feelings of overwhelming admiration–occasionally, though not necessarily, of a romantic nature–for a fellow passenger; excessive interest in, or curiosity about, a fellow passenger.
2. The object of such admiration or interest.

My biggest bus crush was (and still is) Bus Nerd, but I have minor bus crushes–on women, men, young, …

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Category: reasons to ride, transit culture | Tagged ,

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 …

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Category: transit culture | Tagged , , ,

I <3 transit

This week, it’s time for us transit types to engage in a different kind of bus luh. (Though of course, it’s really fine for us never to engage in the standard kind.) APTA’s trying to show Congress that there’s public support for public transportation.

Transit Lovers Unite
“I <3 Transit” engages public transit riders via mobile text campaign

Washington, DC –The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and its more than 1,500 members are launching “I <3 Transit”(I heart transit), a mobile text campaign, to engage riders across the country and demonstrate the importance of public transportation to …

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Category: issues | Tagged , ,