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Monday, 30 September 2013

Did you pay for 2 seats?

Because transit is already going so well for me today, I should have seen this coming.

I knew this girl was going to be trouble when she was first on (a soon to be very full) skytrain and didn't move all the way into the train. Then at the next stop, some seats cleared out and she sat in the window seat and I sat next to her. Mistake on my part, as I should have already known she had space entitlement issues.

As the photo shows, I ended up with 3/4 of a seat because she couldn't be bothered to take off her backpack and back her knees up and heaven forbid her legs touch her umbrella!

Being old doesn't exempt you from common courtesy (Transit Rule #3)

I get on the bus and am sitting quite happily in my seat until the last stop on campus. The bus is very full and some old (and likely legally blind) guy gets on. Like a decent human being, I give him my seat. What does he give me? Jack all! Not a thank you or even a smile. Last time I checked, being old and being courteous are not mutually exclusive.

...Which brings me to another transit rule: "If someone gives you their seat, whether or not you 'deserve' it, say thank you!"

I should have stayed in bed

It's never a good sign when you get to the skytrain station and you hear the indistinct mumbling of an announcement over the skytrain PA system before you even hit the platform. All I managed to hear on my way up the escalator was "...trains will be held at or outside stations longer than usual." Never a good sign.

Now I've been on the skytrain for almost half an hour and have traveled two whole stations! There was another announcement that there was a medical emergency at Columbia (which obviously sucks worse for that person, but seriously, that's like the worst station to have a delay). Then to add insult to injury, I'm stuck on a train that's having trouble with its doors. Now that wouldn't be so bad if they were just stuck open or closed or halfway, but no ...they keep trying to close, but they don't stay that way. So we sit at the station listening to the repeated 'ding, ding, ding' of the doors closing then opening, closing then opening, closing then opening ... It's like Chinese water torture. I think the whole skytrain is starting to feel homicidal.

I would ask what else could go wrong, but I don't want to know.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Avert your eyes

Whenever I can hear someone speaking from across the skytrain, it is my natural inclination to try to figure out who is talking. So of course, when we got to a stop today and I hear someone saying, "Enjoy folks. Thanks for coming." and other such greetings one doesn't expect on the skytrain, I had to look to see who it was. Unfortunately in doing so I broke one of my own transit rules: "Don't make eye contact."

When I looked over towards the voice, I found myself eye to eye with self-appointed transit greeting man. Luckily the skytrain was full and we were several people apart, so I could quickly avert my gaze to avoid any unwelcome interaction.

In many situations eye contact is good. On transit, it is bad; eye contact only attracts the crazy. It is all the confirmation they need that you REALLY want to hear what they have to say. In the mind of the crazies, eye contact = let's be bffs. So unless you're craving your daily dose of crazy, just say no to eye contact.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Keep it out of your pants

One of the few joys of taking transit instead of driving yourself somewhere is the ability be on your phone without threat of a ticket or killing someone. That being said, if you're going to check your phone every 10 seconds while you're sitting next to someone, don't keep putting it back in your pocket!

The guy next to me on the train this morning clearly didn't understand this idea. He was playing some sort of game on his ipod, but had a separate phone that he kept checking. Since his hands were busy with his game though, he kept putting the phone back in his pants pocket, which meant he also kept jabbing me with his elbow. Seriously, dude, is your lap broken? Because you could save us both the trouble and just leave it there.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

This would be a much better story if the driver had refused to open the doors

If you've ever been to SFU, you know the campus is not all that large. In particular the walk between the 2 main bus stops on campus is about 5 minutes, 10 if you saunter. So it never ceases to amaze me that there are people who take the bus solely for the purpose of getting between these stops.

Today in fact 2 guys thought it would be a good idea to get on a bus around 4:30 at the upper loop (classes get out at 20 past each hour, so this is one of the busiest buses of the day) and get off at the lower loop. Of course, the bus drivers only open the front doors at the lower stop to facilitate pass checking. So here are these 2 guys, pushing helplessly on the back door which refuses to open. Eventually someone (who was not one of those 2 guys) yelled to the driver to get him to open the back doors.

Did they have small children with them? No. Was either of them disabled? No. Were they carrying something large/awkward/heavy? No. So I really hope they accidentally got on the wrong bus, otherwise personally, I think it would have served them right if the driver hadn't opened the doors. This type of lazy should not be encouraged.