Tara Ramroop has laughed, cried, and commiserated with this amazing community from the start. She's been writing for as long as she can remember and riding Muni for more than a decade.
Some of this post is F-centric, and some of it is just rants and raves about what should be basic common sense on public transit. It’s going to be pretty clear which is which.
Muni Diaries often complains about the F. I guess Muni Diaries complains about a good handful of things, but there are special problems inherent in the F that require extra-special complaints.
I don’t know how much it cost by its unveiling in 2000 to expand the F-Market line to the wharves, but I’m sure it was expensive. It appears to have been part of a continuing effort to revamp the rails and give tourists something cute to ride on. Nonetheless, I think the city underestimates how many people, regular SF residents, use it to get to work. We use it because there is NOTHING QUICKER. It’s so freakin’ cute. It emphazies local history and I love that to bits. But it is so inefficient and slow, it makes me and the other commuters want to rip our hair out as we all fight to get on the tiny, infrequent cars.
I actually like the fact that NextMuni exists. It gives me something to look at in a bus shelter rather than stare at the people in it, stare at the Muni map I’ve damn-near memorized, stare off into space, or stare at my cell phone photos or text messages to keep me entertained. It also helps prevent stepping out and looking for the bus (“Is it there now…now?…NOW??”), though I still do that if it’s one minute away and I don’t see one headed my way.
Though I hear some fairly positive reviews of it (and read a handful of fairly positive reviews of it on Yelp), I kind of hate NextMuni, an apparent adjunct of NextBus. I really want to know who is responsible for it, so I know who to complain to about their irritatingly inaccurate system.
I spent much of last Monday working at home. So, the first people I came into contact with all day were fellow 49 riders, headed north on Van Ness from the Mission, around 6 p.m. Needless to say (it was my own fault, goddamn me) I don’t recommend this to be your first, face-to-face interaction with the outside world.
Tale 1: There’s a woman on the bus with her tiny kid on her lap, and her baby paraphernalia, including a stroller, leaning on the seat next to her. I hate Seat Jabbas; you know – the people who take up enormous amounts of horizontal space, thanks to their bag, their computer, their food, etc. etc. etc. Yet, I can draw the distinction between unknowing/uncaring asshole, and a woman who clearly did not prefer Muni for whatever errand she was doing. We all love to hate cars, but this woman could probably use one.
In comes a crusty, probably not crazy but definitely pushy, woman who demands the mom take her stuff off the seat. Her reasoning? “You didn’t pay for all those seats.”
Thanks for doing more foot patrols. I am highly offended, though, that I’ve seen more police in Fisherman’s Wharf (for those gun-toting tourists?) than in some of the shittier, crime-ridden areas of town. Ross Mirkarimi is probably having a brain aneurysm as we speak.
It really wasn’t a huge deal until I saw three SF police chopping it up with some friendly old ladies from Where the Fuck Ever, then getting upset because my FastPass wasn’t visible when I came in through the back door, this one time on the F line. Those non-visible FastPasses are the real reason SF is anchored on the crime map these days, thanks for doing your part.
I get how police can’t be everywhere at once and how crime is sometimes very random. But there is a proven halo effect around police stations (and cops), so I’d appreciate seeing you more near those wackos in the Mission than near the fanny packs in Pier 39.
Your friend (taxpaying citizen),
I’m wary of all Muni drivers, and you should be, too. Walking across Geary (yikes) the other day, I preferred to stand in the unguarded median than race an oncoming 38. While drivers of regular vehicles will usually stop for a pedestrian in an unlighted crosswalk (you know, it being the law and everything), Muni is clearly above this standard.
I’m not just bagging on our favorite local transit agency because of a continuing killing streak the buses seem to have been on the last few years. It’s highly cool to hate Muni, of course, but I’m not just jumping on the bandwagon.
I walk a lot. Alone, usually. I obey more traffic signals than most of my fellow pedestrians who, braver than I, will dart in front of a California Street cable car because it takes too long to wait for our light. So, I get really pissed off when Muni buses (to name names, the 10-Townsend when it’s on North Point and the 33-Stanyan when it’s on 18th Street) take the red light like it ain’t no thang. I follow the rules. Are you going to?
Whoever wrote that song about one being a lonely number had it wrong. One, in fact, is the best number, at least in the Muni universe. My search for a new place to call home has mostly brought me to the Richmond and Sunset areas, putting me on the foreign 38-Geary and, today, the 1-California.
There isn’t enough time or space to explain everything that’s wrong with the 38. But what I have to say about the 1 is (hopefully) shortish and sweet.
This has to be the best bus route in SF. A friend said this is among the highest-rated lines for on-time performance and, incidentally, is the one Mayor Gavin Newsom uses. Seeing as how Muni funds are being slashed left and right, I can’t say the latter is that compelling a fact. But anyway…