Three things to do when someone passes out on BART

What would you do if you saw someone passed out on BART and you’re not really sure what’s going on? This happened to rider Ginger M., who saw a young man on BART who was not in such good shape. As she considered the possibilities, she saw another passenger approach the man with such compassion and kindness that really made an impression on her.

Here’s Ginger’s story:

While riding on BART in the afternoon to work there was a person so passed out that they were hanging over the end of the seat. There was much blond hair hanging down and food strewn around.

 

1st thought: Junkie?
2nd thought: Are they dead?
3rd thought: Are they okay; is this a person who has been drugged and assaulted?
4th thought: Should I tell someone?
5th and full thought through this entire thing: Should I do something?

 

While I was asking myself all sorts of questions, a black man who was sitting behind me moved up to sit behind this person, whom other people had moved away from. He sat for a moment and then spoke to the passed out person who turned out to be a young man in velvet pants.

 

They talked. Talked in good ways.

 

We all got off at the same stop together and I watched that wonderful man walk with him to get him to a good place.

I will never forget that act today. One of courage. And one of great compassion. To that man today, I honor you.

A good lesson of compassion on public transit or anywhere. Thanks, Ginger! Got other important news for your fellow riders? Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox (muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com) is always open!

An inspiring video profile of a BART station agent

Five thousand people took an exam to become a BART station agent. Of those people, 100 were chosen to be interviewed. Of those, BART hired 30. One of those 30 is William Cromartie.

Every day, Cromartie encounters 4,000 people, many of whom he greets by handshake or fist bump, as he believes in stepping outside of the station agent booth. “I stay outside. That’s where the people are,” he says.

Local filmmaker Ivan Cash was so inspired by him that he made a short documentary about the station agent. From the filmmaker:

After meeting William on my commute to/from Oakland and witnessing his warmth and friendliness firsthand, I knew I had to make a film about him. I hope his story inspires more people to open up their hearts to strangers. Thank you, William, for inspiring me and countless others!

We know that the people working at our BART and Muni stations have a tough job—some of them have been kind to share their stories onstage at our live shows. BART operator Kelly Beardsley regaled the crowd with drama over the BART intercom, as well as a visceral story about a poop artist on the train. And Muni operator Driver Doug gave us the ultimate skinny with his behind-the-scenes stories. If you have a favorite driver or station agent, write us and give them a shoutout! Our inbox is always open for your stories.

Thanks to @k_e_e_n_a_n on Instagram for the tip.

<em>Want to hear more of these stories live on stage? Muni Diaries Live returns Saturday, Nov. 4 at the Elbo Room. Get your tickets here.</em>

Post-It artist brilliantly illustrates Hamilton on BART

hamilton post it artist by andy lie

Bay Area creativity and our collective Hamilton craze were fiercely represented in a Post-It note artist’s work on BART.

As seen by @andylie1 on Twitter, someone brought brilliant cultural cachet to the fine station and city of Lafayette with some well-placed Post-It notes on this BART map. For those of you not (yet) in the Hamilton crew, Marquis de Lafayette is a character in the musical portrayed by Daveed Diggs. Here’s the video to said lyrics, and consider this your Broadway earworm of the day.

As if this is not cool enough: Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda full-on quoted the tweet for his million-plus following and gave it a big ole double tap regram on Insta. Dear Post-It artist, I think your whole life has been made.

lin manuel miranda regram

Thank you to Muni Diaries reader Deirdre O. for spotting this gem!

Other inspired uses of Post-Its on transit:
– “Don’t sit there”: Five things to be thankful for on Muni
– Mystery rider’s sweet Post-It reminder for all
– Using Post-Its to make the commute more entertaining

Got other important news for your fellow riders? Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Our email inbox, muni.diaries.sf@gmail.com, is always open!

Bike on BART? Strap it on, baby

bike strap on BART by prinzrob

Last September we told you about the new bike straps that BART was piloting in select cars, intending to secure unruly bicycles during bumping rides. Or during that false stop + go slightly + stop-stop. Ugh, you know what I’m talking about.

SFGate reported that, as a part of a new test program in 60 BART cars, you’ll find more of the storied straps, either Velcro or a buckle. Rider @prinzrob spotted the velcro variety on BART the other day.

Multi-modal riders: how are the new straps working out for you, and any tips you want to share with fellow cyclists/BART riders?

BART’s new ad about Islamophobia

bart islamphobia ad kevmo

Here’s a BART ad that we can all get behind. From Uptown Almanac’s @kevinmonty, the poster encourages bystanders to engage in conversation with the person who is the target of Islamophobic harassment. A simple “Hi, how are you?” or engaging in a random topic of conversation could deter further terrible behavior.

Have you tried similar tactics to contain a potentially aggressive situation? Or maybe you went straight to the Taser method? How would you de-escalate a situation?

Hat tip to Amy over at the super-plugged-in, very funny Capp Street Crap for pointing this our way.

BART begins using crowdsourced escalator signs?

urban_advanture escalator broken sign muni diaries

Plugging into the wisdom of the crowd, we now have the answer to, “When will the station escalator finally be fixed?” Above is the latest prediction via @urban_adventure.

BART rider @27suns saw another likely conclusion:

BART_escalator

Here’s the final word on when the escalator will be restored. Put it on your calendar, everyone. Submitted by Amy at Capp Street Crap.
BART_sign

Oh, San Francisco, you’re adorably funny when you’re cranky.

What else did you spot on your commute today? Muni Diaries is entirely made of stories (and photos) from riders like you. Tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to add your own diary entry of life in SF.

Muni Diaries Live is back on April 15 at the Elbo Room! All the best stories live on stage, and we are bringing back the haiku battle! Tickets on sale.

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