Tag Archives: Transit Museum

My kind of bus luh

Even if I hadn’t met my own husband on a bus, I would still be a believer in transit romance. Yes, I know all about the awkward, irritating, and otherwise unpleasant interactions with folks you’d rather not get acquainted with (believe me, I could write a book). I also know that buses and trains are filled with interesting people–Hello, Octavia Butler, August Wilson, Jacob Lawrence, Toni Morrison, Vincent Kartheiser, MC Geologic!–and offer plenty of opportunities to strike up a conversation. Just don’t ask this guy for tips.

But I digress.

As Valentine’s Day approaches (not my favorite holiday, but whatever), per usual, bus luh is getting plenty of publicity. The NYC Transit Museum is hosting its Missed Connections party on the big day. In Philadelphia, there’s an actual contest, with prizes for the best tale of transit romance. And last week, Eric Jaffe waxed poetic about love in a subway car (thanks, Jessica!). How could a committed transit type not revel?

The thing is, highly publicized “boy meets girl” (and “boy meets boy”) stories are nice, but they’re not the reality for most riders. And (if I may keep it real for a moment) sometimes, they’re a bit gag inducing. What I find most romantic about buses (no disrespect to Smooth Jazz) is the possibility of meaningful connections with strangers–not the kind that lead to a subway platform proposal or a bus-themed wedding, but the kind that leave you energized, enriched, and educated. The kind that make a difference in your day.

So here’s hoping that this month of love brings some real romance to the ride: more Miss Ida and less Mr. I Do (not that there’s anything wrong with that). ‘Cause the relationship this rider is working on is decades deep and in need of a little TLC.

Speaking of kids…

1) Another car-free parent, Jeremy Adam Smith in San Francisco, shares his reasons for riding (and walking) with his son (via: Carfree with Kids):

You can buy eco-products from here to the end of time; you can recycle and reuse everything you can; you can even buy a hybrid. But most scientists and engineers agree: The single best thing you can do for the Earth, the greatest positive change you can make, is to give up owning a private vehicle altogether.

Many people will see this as a terrible sacrifice — and in some places, it is almost impossible. But after fifteen years without a car — five of them as a parent — I don’t think we’ve sacrificed a thing. And in fact, our carfree family has gained a lot…

Jeremy goes on to list many of the same benefits that my family–and the (few) other car-free families we know–have experienced: quality time; contact with community; improved health; resourcefulness; and a real, on-the-ground knowledge of one’s city that simply cannot be duplicated from the isolated bubble of a car.

Can I get an “amen!”?

2) Some fun gifts for Chicklet and Bus-Baby-to-Be from my cousins-in-law, Erin and Eli, in NYC:

Transit Museum SWAG
Cute SWAG from the New York Transit Museum

Transit Museum SWG
The important parts of a subway car, or, as Chicklet calls it, “a light rail”
Transit Museum SWAG
“Chew, chew, chew!”

So far, my gratitude is overcoming my envy (I wanna go to the Transit Museum!), but the emotions are pretty much neck and neck.

Thanks, guys!