Public Transportation 2: Looking Back

In the years I have been taking public transportation, I have seen and heard many things. To sum it up in five words, “People continue to amaze me”. In this post I will reflect on some of what I have experienced through the years.

Change of a hundred?
I remember being on the bus when we pulled into a train station. A woman (I think) gets on the bus and asks, “Does anybody have change of a hundred ($100)?”. Nobody answered and she got off to see if anyone at the station had change. She gets back on and asks, “Does anybody have change of a fifty ($50)?”. As I suspected nobody answered. I remember thinking to myself, “If nobody had change of a hundred, what the hell makes you think people would have change of a fifty?”. She told the driver that she would wait for the next bus.
This is not meant to be rude, but I never hand out change. I even said this on the  bus one day and a passenger actually went so far as to lecture me about it. She made it sound like I was required to give somebody change if I had it. I thought her argument was ridiculous then and I still think it is now.  I believe passengers should be prepared before they get onto a bus.

I have been on the bus during a few snow storms in years gone. I even went home during a blizzard and let me tell you that people need to have patience in times like this.
But many passengers often complain when it is snowing and the buses are late.
They seem to have this mistaken notion that the drivers should operate the bus at their normal speeds. They fail to realize that if they did, their safety would be at risk. The irony is that these same people would probably be the first to file a lawsuit if they were injured on a bus that drove at a normal speed during snow storm and got into an accident.

Three Minutes Early
One day I was on the bus when the driver stopped to pick up a passenger. The passenger gets on and says out loud, “You’re always three minutes early. Three minutes early!”. I think he went on to say that he could have missed the bus.
If he bothered to learn a thing or two about public transportation, he would know that you are supposed to arrive at the bus stop ahead of schedule.

People In Other Vehicles
There have been a number of things that I have observed when it comes to people driving cars in my years of using public transportation. To be honest many people are dense.
On more than one occasion I have witnessed drivers behind a bus actually honk at  the bus while passenger said are being picked up and or dropped off. I could almost understand this if a driver was stopped in an area that wasn’t a designated bus stop. But this typically isn’t the case. Either way drivers have accept the fact that there are bus stops and people have the right to use them. If drivers cannot accept this, then maybe they should give up their license.
Another thing are drivers who seem to think they can take on a bus. I cannot tell you the number of times I have seen somebody try to cut off a bus. These people are asking to be seriously injured if a bus stops short and crashes into them. People like this are dangerous and should not be on the road.

Custom Bus Stops
There are many people who seem to think that can get off the bus wherever they want. Even when it’s not a bus stop. The best of which are those that insist are being let off next to a turning lane. They simply will not accept how dangerous this is. Some insist on arguing with the driver and go so far as to say that other drivers allow it. Just because another driver has done it doesn’t make it any safer. If a passenger gets injured I have no doubt that they will looking to hire an attorney. It’s amazing how upset passengers will get if a driver stands his or her ground. I have been so tempted to tell these same people to call the transit authority and tell them that the driver would let them off next to a turning lane. I can just imagine the reaction they would get. I know I might be tempted to laugh because of how ridiculous their complaint sounds. The bus stops are designated for their safety. But some people seem to think they have some sort special privilege. One of my favorite experiences was a passenger wanted to be let off at a corner and the driver would only let her off at the bus stop about block away. She gets off the bus complaining that she had to walk “all the way back there”.

What can I say except that taking public transportation can be an interesting experience. So if you ever find yourself having to use it, sit back and pay attention to is happening around you. The general public can be some of the best entertainment you will ever experience.


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