Put a lid on it: Urban still-life on Muni

blue chairs Tostitos lid, missing jar

Tostitos apparently trademarked “Get Together Already” (a discussion for a different day), an imperative one Muni rider took to heart. One passenger on a 9-San Bruno was so keen on bringing the party, they left this lid and assorted snack detritus behind. Yes, it’s rude and messy, but this decidedly urban still-life gave me pause and I didn’t hate it.

In some Sliding Doors parallel universe, the lid meets the bowl of milk on Muni (seriously), the discarded durian, and the party is brought for real.

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Muni News: SFMTA cracks down on drivers abusing breaks, bus stop consolidation on Van Ness

powell station muni diaries jachristian feat

This week in Muni news:

Muni slams brakes on drivers abusing breaks. SF Examiner’s Joe Fitzgerald reports that Muni is cracking down on drivers who take excessive breaks, as witnessed by a bus full of passengers on the 9-San Bruno waiting for their driver to get a meal at McDonald’s.

Muni to kick off construction of Twin Peaks tunnel in August. Hoodline reports that the Twin Peaks Tunnel Trackway Improvement project is coming our way this summer. The main purpose is seismic retrofitting to improve stability. Bus shuttles will be in service during the shutdown.

Man waiting for Muni gets knifed in the neck. Bad news. SFist reports that a man waiting for the bus in the Castro was stabbed by another man who walked up to him. He is recovering.

Nine Muni stops on Van Ness to be consolidated. The Examiner reports that nine stops will be eliminated for the bus transit rapid project on Van Ness, affecting the 47, 49, and 91. You can meet the experts (in this case, Michael Schwartz from the San Francisco County Transportation Authority) to learn more next Wednesday.

Photo by @jachristian

Nose-blowing etiquette lesson aboard the 9-San Bruno

Photo by Paul Sullivan

There are all sorts of unspoken rules for riding Muni. This we know, though we don’t all always follow them. Fair enough.

But Muni rider Yorkman has a tale of a most unexpected bit of etiquette bestowed upon him last summer.

On a Thu evening in July 2013, I boarded the northbound 9 line at Potrero and 24th St, headed downtown. My nose was running so I had to blow it maybe 4-5 times to clear it. A man sitting nearby took extreme exception to what he thought was crude behavior on my part, and strongly corrected me. He maintained that blowing my nose once or twice was OK but more was disgusting. Then I remembered that he had done the same thing to me about a year previously.

At least this misguided patron of the etiquette arts is consistent.

Hang in there, Yorkman. And do what you gotta do with your runny nose.

Learn more lessons and hear stories that can only happen on Muni this Saturday at Muni Diaries Live. Get advance tickets today.

Vicious Beating on the 9-San Bruno After Giants Parade

Photo by Jeffrey

Just when you think we’ve had enough violent stories for the week, we received an account from Muni rider Robert, who witnessed a terrible beating on Wednesday after the Giants parade. Here’s an excerpt of his report.

This is not a fun or pretty story.

I was on the 9, going home after the Giants World Series parade and celebration shortly after 4 p.m. The bus was extremely crowded as expected and the driver kept telling everybody to step back, claiming that there was plenty of room in the back. He was mistaken. He had left the driver’s seat and went outside to direct or cajole the passengers who were boarding at the rear door when I was stepping into the bus from the front door. I paid the fare and walked to an open spot in the front half of the bus.

At a stop on Potrero, a young Hispanic couple stepped off the bus and were followed by a group of riders that numbered at least a dozen. The group of riders attacked the couple, who were shortly down on the sidewalk. [They] surrounded, kicked, and stomped on the prostrate couple in a frenzy of violence. Some of the riders recorded videos on their cellphones. Some people called for emergency assistance. When the beating had concluded, the man was bleeding from his mouth but didn’t seem seriously injured as he was able to get up from the sidewalk. Unfortunately, his lady friend was still down and convulsing. I saw a lot of blood on the sidewalk.

Some of the attackers actually re-entered the bus, expecting it to drive away from the scene. Only after they realized that the driver was waiting for police and ambulance did they exit the bus and disappear into the Potrero Avenue crowd. I remember one of the attackers who returned to the bus had red and white tassels woven into thin dreadlocks. I can’t forget the animated motion of the tassels as the attacker brutally stomped [on the couple].

The San Francisco Police Department summary of the incident reported that there were five suspects — one black man and four black women. The suspects had left the scene; the victims were taken to a local hospital and treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Scary stuff to add to this week’s list of bad news in light of the good baseball news. Be careful out there, everyone.

Muni Writings: “These females that killed up above …”

Photo by echoes71

Beth’s ride on the 9-San Bruno took an odd turn the other day after she saw someone scribbling away at the note above. It reads, for the most part:

These females that killed up above are in the space that my friend didn’t watch (something) correctly then (something) one 187 Packers (something) in one (something) confused…

Skurry. Intriguing.

What’s going on on your Muni rides?

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