7-Haight

In 1955, Muni knew how to roll out its new rides

1955

What isn’t there to love about this photo? A bus raised above stupid street level. An English bulldog, snorting and heh-heh-hehing. A bunch of white men in suits, some holding their top hats, showing off their shiny new public transit vehicle.

Via Muni Diaries Live alum and all around Mr. Awesome, Peter Hartlaub: “Give these 1955 @sfmta_muni execs credit: When they unveiled a new bus, they valued showmanship.”

Enhance:

bulldog

New photo project profiles life on Muni, one rider at a time

kian lavi 100 days of bus project

Photographer Kian Lavi was struggling to keep up with his hobby because, like most of us, his day job always seemed to get in the way. But people like you—Muni riders each with a story of your own—inspired him to start a 100-day photo project that has captured the best of what we love about life on the bus. Lavi has been photographing one rider a day on his commute, and he is just a little more than halfway done. Along the way, he says, “I’ve gotten job offers, heard fantastic stories, and have fallen in love with every person I get to talk to.”

And of course, getting to know your fellow riders gave Lavi a Muni story or two of his own. We chatted with him last week:

What made you decide to do this 100-day project?

I heard about The Great Discontent’s #The100DayProject after reading an article about Michael Bierut, and it made me realize how out of touch with my own photography I had become. I do street photography in my downtime, but without downtime, I’d all but stopped. The project’s prompt to make something, however small, for 100 days caught my eye and has held my attention for over 50 days now. I love people, so it was natural for me to focus my project on the people around me every day.

(more…)

Retro Buses Celebrate Muni Centennial


Photo by @thecara

OMG, you guys. It’s like an old car show, Muni-style. Beginning yesterday, and happening again next Sunday, Muni is wheeling out special Sunday service for these vintage buses to celebrate Muni’s upcoming 100th birthday. How cool is that?

The fine folks at Market Street Railway have more on the two-time special Sunday service. Meanwhile, click the photo below to open a gallery of images we dug up.

[EasyGallery id=’centennial’]
Photo by itsgraaaay

Photo credits:

1. itsblim
2. itsgraaaay
3. agentakit
4. @larrybobsf
5. agentakit
6. @thecara
7. @markasaurus
8. @thecara
9. cripsahoy
10. @thecara
11. @thecara
12. @thecara
13. abobass

Historic 7-Haight — What Could Be


Photo by skew-t

Last week, we posted about a circa-1960s Muni bus up for auction, yours for the bargain-basement price of $12,000. You have a little less than a day to bid on that one. But, you ask, what will I do with my vintage Muni bus, other than have fabulous parties in it?

Tofu St. John on our Facebook Page had a popular suggestion:

I think a few should be restored and put into regular service for the retro appeal. Bring back the 7-Haight and only use old, restored buses.

Now there’s an idea.

We had some sad-face after our favorite elusive (read: not ridden that often, but nice when we did) lines got the axe in 2009. After soliciting Muni obituaries for them, we found a number of you felt the same way. A historic version of the 26-Valencia or the 4-Sutter at least makes for some fun afternoon daydreaming, however unlikely it seems in real life.

Muni Mind Reader: Haight-Bus Punker and ‘Service Dog’

Haight Street
Photo by Flickr user Mat Honan

It’s summer. It’s hot. Muni Mind Reader took the week off last week. But never you fear — she’s back and in fine form this warm August Friday. For this installment, Tiffany (aka, Muni Mind Reader) checks in with that colorful character you sometimes see on the 6, 7, or 71. Any of the Haight Street lines, really. He or she is known by many names and aromas, but enough of this intro. Take it away, Mind Reader!

Hey, what are you all looking at? You’re all just a bunch of society-lovers, aren’t you? Oh I’ve seen this before. You look at my duct-taped pants, weather-beaten trench, and standard-issued Doc Martens, and think, “If only he’d shop at The Gap or Banana Republic, he’d be such a nice boy!”

Well, listen up SOCIETY, I refuse to conform to your capitalistic, material-obsessed, world. Lucky for you, I’m not going to try to sit next to any of y’all. Instead, I’ll just sit up front where I can spread out a little bit, have more space for this radio, trash bag filled with other trash bags, sleeping bag, tarp, and duffel bag. The last three items I just picked up from the army surplus store on Haight Street. Incidentally, it’s where I do all my shopping. These pants are really just second-hand army ACU pants. I added the duct tape myself to enhance durability, cred, and had absolutely nothing to do one Wednesday afternoon. If you’re going to be a middle-class, early-20s, homeless-by-choice punk in this city, freakin’ army surplus stores are the bomb.

This is my dog, Warrior. Come here War! We’ve been together a long time. I got her at the SPCA. Now, anyone who has tried to adopt a pet from an animal shelter can sympathize with me over the long-ass process. Originally, I lied and said I had a job, thinking the key to having a pet in this city is to prove you have daily responsibilities and income to provide for the health and well-being of my furry friend. But then they worried I’d be out of the house all the time. So then I fessed up. Hell no man, I don’t live in your conformist world. My job is to let passers-by know they are the enemy and my decision to live under a few bushes in Golden Gate Park is a passionate statement on what’s wrong with the world. That’s when everyone realized I’d be “home” all the time. She’s been really instrumental in helping me carry around all my belongings. That’s why she always gets free passage on Muni. Cuz she’s a SERVICE DOG! Haaa! Stupid society.

Nah, he ain’t got no muzzle. What the hell do you want me to do? Conform some of the time?

So I know you’re wondering why it is I don’t smell quite as bad as I usually do. Usually you can smell the potent blend of my urine, my dog’s urine, weed, BO, and compost before I even get on the bus. I saw you all look up horrified when you heard all the plastic I was carrying rustle. But then you thought, Well that’s weird, I don’t want to throw up in my mouth. FOOLED YOU! I had my monthly visit with the folks. STUPID PARENTS. Nah, I’m just kidding. I love ‘em, and even though it can be pretty embarrassing to be picked up by your parents in the Panhandle (especially when they show up in their vintage Mercedes-Benz) I think they’re proud of me. Yeah, we headed up to Sonoma for the weekend. I got to take a shower, wash my clothes. I gave Warrior a bath too. It’s real pretty up in Sonoma, have you ever been? YEAH YOU HAVE BECAUSE YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM MY FRIEND!

All right, I’m ready to blow this joint. I promised my parents I’d at least fill out one college application today, though really, I’m just doing a 40 run for the kids at camp. Smell me later!