Tuesday, November 3, 2009

NaBloMo Day 3 "Smells like Transit to Me"

 I will take a day away from talking about my cancer experiences to discus Public Transit...
Vancouver, BC has a pretty ineffectual public transit system, especially to me a guy from NY whose transit is almost good enough to have a stop right next to your bed or local pub.
 We have five modes of transport Typical diesel buses, electric trolley buses, the Sky Train (which is not in the sky so not very cool) community buses and the sea bus.


 Now living in NYC or Chicago, Boston, London or any other real city with transit the people learn the basics of transit etiquette. You wait to the side of the subway doors for people to get off, you fold your newspaper as not to poke the eyes of the potential serial killer sitting next to you and you never, never make eye contact with strangers. Some things are the same everywhere the smells that range from rotten garbage, spoiled milk, spoiled milk festering in underarms, wafting male crotch stink, the universal urine and desperation stink that somehow is the tranist equivalent of that new car smell.

 The smells I can get used to but what makes me want to release 200 hungry rabid badgers loose on my daily commuters are these little nuggets;

Old Asian Ladies: They are the zombies of Vancouver transit, they do not move fast, will push thru a crowd like linebackers, scream gibberish all whist wearing those welders mask / sun visor thing in order to keep the sun from turning these scary ladies to dust.

Homeless Bottle collecting binners / dumpster divers: Last year after a few drivers were called bad names, spit on and a few punched they no  longer require them to enforce fare collection. So now our buses are a parade of hefty bags full of beer bottles, cans and the areas backwash through the bus. They will beg for change, poop and piss their pants and usually harass nice young girls or anyone they think may have a cigarette.

University Students: Every fall brings the changing of the leaves, pumpkins, rain, hockey season and the Bataan death march called the U-Pass. The U-pass is a bus pass for university students it allows them to hog up all th bus space, continually beat your face while you sit with over sized north-face backpacks and force upon us the Jody Foster in "Nell" like conversations on their i-phones. There are some bus routes i will not ride on from Aug. to May out of my own fear of being trapped between some babbling coeds in a bus crash while waiting to be extricated.

Stroller Parties!: Ok I know i will get a beating from mums on this one but! If you have your little pride and joy which sprung from your womb and now rides in a hummer sized stroller. please either do not get on the bus at rush hour, or if you have to invest in a nice small folding stroller. You do not have more rights to a ride because you decided to have a child. And if a bus come up and there are already two strollers onboard....WAIT TIL THE NEXT BUS they run every 5 to 10 minutes.

ESL Students: Yes I know it is ok in your country to squeeze as many people onto a bus or train like some kind of Octomom Vaginal Clown Car but not here please. I know you travel in packs of 20 or more. I think it is a law in the Hello Kitty handbook. Also the bus / sky strain is not a photo studio having a photo shoot in front of the exit doors on the #5 Robson Street bus will get you pushed off the bus onto the pavement and most likely in a pool of spit that your class mates created at the stop while waiting for the bus before us.

To Translink: who operates our transit, why do you stop the subway a hour before last call in the bars? do you also own the local taxis or dui lawyers?

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