Muni driver gives the gift of patience

Photo by Ian Fuller

Muni rider Shoshannah bore witness to a perfect mix of Muni and the holidays. If this doesn’t warm your heart, see a cardiologist.

I am lucky to live close enough to my job downtown where I can walk to work most days. But yesterday, the Monday before Christmas, I had early morning appointment in Laurel Village. When I was boarding the 2-Clement, an elderly man with a cane was slowly making his way to the bus—it was obvious he wanted to get on the bus, too. I started to say something to the driver, but he had already seen the man and was ready to wait. When the man got to the bus, the driver was very kind and patient. He made sure that the man waited for the lift to be lowered and kept reassuring him that he wasn’t in a rush and to take his time. He asked him what his stop was, and when it arrived, helped him onto the lift and off onto the sidewalk in front the Jewish Community Center. The driver was ready to pull away, but when he saw that the man was going to have trouble getting into the building, he actually got off the bus and held the door open for him.

When I got off the bus a few stops later, I thanked him for having such a great attitude and wished him happy holidays. I learned that his name is Jason, and that he “has been out here for 18 years.”

I am sure that it being a quiet, pre-holiday commute day helped make this series of events on the bus possible. But even so, it was a beautiful moment that deserves to be celebrated. After almost two decades driving Muni, he could be bitter and detached but instead he is actively serving the public and watching out for those who need help most. Thank you, bus driver Jason, for reminding us that there are good people driving our buses, and for setting an example of patience that we can all learn from.

Good egg Muni driver, we salute you. Happy holidays!

One comment

  • Riley

    I’m glad to see this sort of submission.

    I became a more or less regular rider of Muni in ’76; I say “more or less” because there were some years here and there when I lived outside of The City.

    Across that 36 years I’ve seen a fair number of Muni drivers go out of their way to help someone. Across the same period only three truly bad Muni drivers come to mind.

    On the other hand I’ve seen an uncountable number of bad Muni passengers. Note, not incidentally, that Muni drivers deal are expected to deal with those bad passengers as a routine part of their workday as front-line employees of a regularly dysfunctional employer.

    I admit I couldn’t do it. (Nor could many of those who mistakenly blame Muni drivers for many of the shortcomings of the system itself…)

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