Upskirts and Other Muni Adventures on the 45-Union

Photo by Shanan

In the next four days, we have $50 to give away each day to the best Muni review on Google Places! Just log in, write your most entertaining review of a Muni line (simply write the line you’re reviewing in the title), and use the #MuniDiaries hashtag. So get your creative juices flowing. You can also follow Google Places (@googlesf) to see other fun events.

Today’s winner is “ArchiJoey,” whose review of the 45-Union includes upskirts, frontal (and back) nudity, and Fleet Week pilots. Just another day on the bus, right?

45 Union/Stockton: Gone are my days of trekking from SOMA to the Inner Richmond on an odd combo of buses that varied based on a complicated algorithm I perfected over 5 years. No, for the last two years I’ve been riding in style on the 45 Union Stockton, or as my 88-year-old grandma calls it the E-car (perhaps it was called this in a pre-WWII era). I say “in style” because I’m usually able to get a seat in the lounge area in the back of the bus with the I-Banker frat boys and Tory Burch bedecked Marina girls.

From there we have a good view at the poor souls who get on in North Beach and have to do the seat tango with the Chinatown grandmas. Though sometimes we have more risque amusement in the back lounge. Once I got a good eyeful of some full frontal and backal nudity of dude who stopped to take a poop on Stockton Street in rush hour traffic.

I have also met several interesting men on the 45. There were the pilots one Fleet Week who offered me twenty bucks to lift up my skirt, the drunk tourist from Chicago who violently fell from his seat as the bus started to lurch up Union Street and got to look up my skirt for free, and the perfect guy who was literally going to the airport to move away from the Bay Area.

But perhaps its greatest attribute is the intense feat of strength that the 45 performs numerous times every day. I honestly do not think that there is a bus that is designed to go up the Union Street Hill. I imagine a group of Muni engineers sitting around trying to devise a way to defy the laws of physics and get a bus over the hill and finally saying “F&*$ it, let’s try it out.” And f*$# all, it worked.

Some days it does slow to a tortoise like crawl as it squeaks up the hill and I silently chant “I think I can, I think I can,” and at least once a week it rolls backward a few yards and I think I’m going to die on the corner of Polk Street, but the driver always seems to get us moving upwards in just the nick of time. So 45 Union/Stockton, I thank you for curing me of my fear of hills, introducing me to the fab footwear of the Marina girls, and maybe someday I can thank you for helping me find a guy who I’ll willingly let look up my skirt.

Write your own review of a Muni line on Google Places and you can win $50 tomorrow. Go on, tell us all about your Muni ride.

‘I Learned How to Get Pills on My First Muni Ride’

Photo by shanan

Justin recently arrived in SF. Welcome, Justin. Take it away!

I just moved to San Francisco, and last week rode on Muni for the very first time. Super crowded on the 45-Union/Stockton headed to AT&T Park, and when the seats next to me freed up at the first stop, two girls sat down and continued their conversation. At first I tried minding my own business, but I haven’t yet mastered the art of blocking out the Muni noise, so I eavesdropped. And this was the first thing I heard:

GIRL 1: Crap, you know what? I don’t think I have any more pills.
GIRL 2: Really? I thought Chris still had some from the knee thing?
GIRL 1: Nooo, those are long gone. I’m talking about from what Julie had left.
GIRL 2: Oh! Did I tell you what me made Jeff do last month? We were at (some bar I don’t remember the name of) and decided we needed some Vicodin. Nobody had any so we convinced Jeff to go to the ER and get some.
GIRL 1: Shut. the Fuck. Up. Did it work?
GIRL 2: Yeah we just told him to make something up, so we found a clinic within walking distance and he walked in and put “Gout” on the form they handed him. Voila! Vics.
GIRL 1: Huh. (thinks for a second) What’s gout?
GIRL 2: Um, I actually don’t know.

I had to hide my screen as I was tweeting this, that’s how close the quarters were that day. I guess they just didn’t care who heard.

Thanks for sharing, Justin. Now, dear reader, it’s your turn to share your Muni story.

I got big butt and I cannot lie…

Photo submitted by Muni rider Joey

All right. We’ve talked about guys who sit on the bus with their business splayed. You know, the two-seat-takin’, man-sittin’ guys. But rider Joey saw a fellow passenger on the 45 last week who took it to the next level: taking up three seats and giving her a special view first thing in the morning on her way to work.

What was this guy thinking?! Actually, we know:

“What do you want from me? I’m a guy. Yeah, a big honkin’ guy, and that’s why I just gotta sit here next to you with my legs spread wide apart because I have this equally big honkin’ mass between my legs. I can see you’re aggravated that my right thigh is on my seat and yours, but what can I do? Get a smaller package? You’ll have to ask god about that one.”

(We miss you, Muni Mind Reader!)

In the mean time, dear Sirs Spread-A-Lot, please remember: Don’t be a space evader:

Photo by

Photographer Kristen Holden: Love Stories on Muni

Photographer, poet, and model Kristen Holden‘s pictures of Muni riders have caught our eye for a while. We found her on Flickr as “SFLoveStory” and tracked her down to find out what makes Muni such a great subject. Holden grew up in Chicago and has lived in San Francisco for almost seven years. She lives in Russian Hill with her musician boyfriend and their “talentless dog.”

What is it about Muni that inspires you to take photos there?

This simple answer is: I ride a lot and I shoot my surroundings more than I do anything else. But what makes Muni rife for photographic capture is that the exterior environment is always changing around the same structure or, like, bones of the scene. There are endless characters to make up stories about.

What’s it like taking pictures on Muni?

I think people generally assume I’m a tourist. Once in a while someone will ask me about my camera and why I shoot film (I’m currently shooting with a second-hand Canon EOS Elan II SLR with a Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens.)

Got a favorite Muni line?

I ride the 45 and 30 to get from Russian Hill, where I live, to downtown and vice versa. I take the 47 and 49 quite a bit. Oh, and I’m one of those weird people who actually rides the 19…it gets the closest to the film-processing center I go to in SoMa. I love the cable cars and streetcars too. The mint-green colored streetcar from Brooklyn (Car 1059?) is my favorite.

You can see more of Holden’s photographs on her website,

Too Much Sex, Read Your Bible

Photo by Flickr user frantikgirl

I think the old adage about full moons bringing the crazies out is not true in San Francisco — I think the heat brings them out. So this morning’s sunny skies meant something good would be happening on the 45.

Once we dropped off all the Marina girls and the old ladies on Market Street and headed toward SOMA I noticed what appeared to be a late middle-aged man with a cane and a bible. Now, in most places, a bible is not necessarily a sign that you’re crazy, but on Muni a bible might as well be a straitjacket. Almost immediately he starts yelling really loudly, spit flying.

“Read your bibles, you’re all going to hell. Too much sex, read your bible. Only Jesus will survive the tsunami and save you from hell, it’s in the bible. Stop gay marriage, read your bible. Your generation is going to hell, read the bible.”

Most of the bus just ignores Angry Bible Guy, but this woman (who didn’t look quite all there) gets up and gets right in his face yelling, “Who are you to be telling us to read the bible, maybe you’re going to hell.”

Angry Bible Guy responds, “Act like a woman, read the bible.”

To which she tells him, “Act like a man, I bet you have a small pecker.”

Then they just start simultaneously screaming at one another until you can’t understand anything but him screaming, “Read your bible” and her imitating an ape with sound effects and a little ape dance.

Finally, the bus driver comes over the loud speaker, “Sir, Lady, you need to keep it down. Pipe down back there.” The screaming continued as I got off the bus. Oh, Lord, lease don’t let it get much hotter, I may have to take a cab.

1 2 3