Ok, first, I must say that I risked my life in running across the 4th Avenue and Fulton intersection while dodging in front of and behind fast-moving cars, just to flag down a 5-Fulton. But that’s not what the story I’m retelling is really about. The bus stopped, and I made a point to say “Thank you” to the kind bus driver. I took my seat across from an overweight man in a wheelchair. A few minutes into my ride, he begins talking to no one in particular. Of course, no one responds, and I continued thinking there was NOTHING special about this behavior. Well, at about five minute mark, I begin to smell cigarette. Again, I thought nothing of this; that is, until I notice smoke protruding from the cigarette the man had just lit up.

My jaw dropped…and quickly I grabbed the collar of my ski jacket to cover up my nose and mouth. No one stopped him. Once all of us had realized what was going on, we reacted in different ways. One person decided to move towards the back of the bus: One of the two males sitting near me let out a jokingly-over-exaggerated cough. The other said “Oh, you got something in your throat?” We all laughed in a semi-secretive fashion. The man in the wheelchair continued to smoke his cigarette until he felt he was done. He dropped his still-lit cigarette onto the floor, failing to put it out when he made an attempt to move his right foot forward half an inch. There the cigarette lay: lit. I had an intense urge, as a girl who hates cigarettes with a passion, to stand up, put the thing out with my heels, and tell him that what he just did was extremely disrespectful, but didn’t. I can assure you that I’m a good citizen, but I’m one that knows better than to start something with an incoherent piece of crap.

Body Found on Muni Bus After Shift Ended (w/updates)

Update (12:00 p.m., April 5, 2010):

SF Weekly reports that the S.F. Medical Examiner has determined Christopher Feasel’s cause of death: cocaine and methadone overdose. Still, as the Weekly’s Joe Eskenazi points out, many questions remain.

Update (1:40 p.m.):

The ex-wife of the man found dead on the Muni bus told the SF Examiner that she had not seen him for over a decade and that addiction was the reason they separated, according to the Examiner’s update story. Feasel had a record of mostly petty crimes in San Francisco and San Mateo counties over the last 12 years, according to the Examiner. He did not have a fixed address at the time he was found on the 5-Fulton.

Read the rest of the Examiner’s update.

Original post:

My apologies for starting off your Monday morning this way: a man’s body was found on the 5-Fulton hours after the bus was parked in the Muni yard on Presidio and Bush, the SF Examiner reports.

More from the Examiner:

The deceased was identified by the Medical Examiner’s Office as 37-year-old Christopher Feasel of San Francisco. Investigators have not determined the cause of death and police said the body showed no obvious signs of trauma.

Workers discovered Feasel around midnight Friday at the bus yard at Presidio Avenue and Bush Street. The bus had been in the lot since 6:30 p.m., police Sgt. Lyn Tomioka said.

Read the rest of the story.

We’ll keep you updated with more information as we find out.

Thank You, Magnificant Muni Drivers

Moon Over MUNI
Photo by Flickr user eviloars

Rider Dave Rhodes wrote MTA a letter about two Muni drivers who saved the day when Dave’s wife lost her wallet on the bus.

I’d like to voice my appreciation for two fantastic San Francisco Muni drivers, George and Bernetta. My wife and I had just purchased two Muni passes on March 2nd for the first time, having recently returned to this city after many years. We were on our way home from the Haight district and took the #33 from Haight St. up to Fulton and Stanyon to catch the #5 to Fulton and 25th.

When the #5 came, driven by Bernetta, my wife reached for her wallet to display her pass only to discover that it was gone. Bernetta saw that she was distraught and waved her aboard the bus anyway, stating, “That’s okay sweetie, we’ll work it out.”

We were shown the number to call for assistance and my wife hooked up with a very helpful operator who’s name I don’t know. She was told that the driver of the #33 (George) would be contacted and asked to look for the wallet. While my wife was on a cell phone talking to the operator, Bernetta also called from her bus radio or phone to try and get the other driver to locate the wallet as soon as possible.

We all knew that time was important, given the increasing likelihood that some nefarious character would find it before the driver did and help themselves to it.
After we reached our destination and disembarked, the MTA operator called back to say that the wallet had been located and that we’d be able to claim it from the #33 driver when he came around again. We were given a time to meet him and grabbed another #5 going back to Fulton and Stanyan to wait for him.

When George pulled up he was beaming, and said that he was happy to have found the wallet because so many items are lost or stolen, he was glad to see something have a happy ending. My wife had ID in the wallet so George was careful to make sure it was hers and then he happily handed it over – a check of the contents showed that the newly purchased Muni pass was still in there, along with a number of important documents and credit cards. We vowed then to be more careful and check our wallets and passes before leaving any Muni bus we happen to be on.

A few days later we boarded a #5 bus on Market Street to get back up into our area, and Bernetta was the driver. I didn’t recognize her at first, but she recognized us and said, “Hey, you got your pass back!” She went on to tell us how glad she was it had worked out and that she’d actually been worried about it!

So I’d like to commend two Muni drivers who care – George and Bernetta. To narrow it down because I know there are quite a few drivers, George was driving the #33 route and Bernetta was driving the #5, both on the evening of March 2nd. We’d also like to extend thanks to the phone operator who took our request for assistance that evening, even though we don’t know her name. She was very kind and helpful.

Photo Diary: Metrosexual Rage on the 21-Hayes

21 Hayes
Photos by KayVee.INC

Saw the above gem via @nom_de_guerre this weekend. Indeed.

5 Fulton

And then this screed came into my Google Reader this morning, via Mission Mission. I call it “Pastry Rage on the 5-Fulton.”

I dunno. Looks like slightly different handwriting to us. Check out the difference between the two “ON THE”s. Different N. Different H.

Still, we hope this is the beginning of something new and totally life-altering. Or something.

The Blind Couple and the Boy

Photo by Flickr user kevindooley

It was a crowded 5-Fulton outbound on a Tuesday commute. Somewhere near the Civic Center, a blind man and his girlfriend (also partially blind) got on the bus and were given seats near the front but not next to one another. Closer to City Hall, a boy around the ages of 7-9 got on the bus with his mother and stood near the front of the bus.

The boy had noticed the blind man’s walking cane and began to talk with him.

Boy: “Sir, what’s that stick for?”
Blind man: “Oh, it’s to help me find my way around because I cannot see.”
Boy: “You can’t see? What do you mean? Can you see me?”
Blind man: “Unfortunately, no, I cannot see you, at least not in this dim light [on the bus].”
Boy: “I wish you could see me. I would give you my eyes so you can see.”
Blind man: “You are so very sweet, thank you.”

The boy’s mother, meanwhile, seemed uncomfortable with her son being overly inquisitive with a stranger. She continued to hush and scold him for asking too many questions throughout the conversation.

Boy: “Do you cook?”
Blind man: “Oh, no way, I don’t. But my girlfriend cooks for me.”

The blind man motions to his girlfriend in the general direction of her voice.

Boy: “Oh, you are his girlfriend?”
Girlfriend: “Yes, I am.”
Boy: “Can you see me?”
Girlfriend: “I also cannot see, but I can see better than my boyfriend.”
Boy: “Why can you both not see? I wish I could give both of you my eyes so you can see me and everyone else here.”
Girlfriend: “That’s so very kind of you, thank you.”

The boy and his mother had to get off the bus around Fillmore. Before he got off the bus, he bid his farewell to the couple.

Boy: “It was nice meeting you, Sir.” He takes the blind man’s hand into his own and shakes it.
Blind man: “It was very nice meeting you, too. Thank you.”
Boy: “It was nice meeting you, Miss.” He hugs the girlfriend.
Girlfriend: “You are so sweet, thank you. You take care of yourself and your mother now.”

The boy and his mother exited, and enough seats freed up between the couple so they could find one another again by the sound of each other’s voices.

1 2 3 4 5 6