Please Don’t Forget About Me Mr. Bus Driver

Monday December 19th was just one of those days. The type of day where you have different ideas of what you have to get done, but also have a lingering dose of laziness. I wrestled back & forth most of the day & decided not to go far.

I took a 7-8 minute walk to a store on Westchester Ave to see if they had any blinds that I could use for my bedroom window. My luck wasn’t good as the store had nothing that would fit my window.

I ended up getting some Christmas things & decided to try a store in Bruckner Plaza. Unfortunately one store didn’t sell those items & the other had nothing in stock for my size. I decided to go home.

I stroll through the Bruckner Plaza parking lot to the street so I could catch the Bx36 or Bx 39 up White Plains Rd for a short ride. Before I got to the street, I had some idiot almost run me over while backing out of his parking spot.

The bus comes within 2 minutes of me getting to the bus stop. I was the only person on the bus when I boarded & we were on our way. I decide to take the bus past the Parkchester stop & go up a few blocks to use the shortcut to my building.

As I see my stop approaching about a block away, I ring the bell. We get to the light & it finally changes. I am starting to prepare to get off when I notice the bus isn’t slowing down. The bus driver passed the stop by about 10 feet. I was about to say something but before I could, he realized his mistake & stopped the bus.

I got off, picked up a quick dinner, & went home. Thankfully I made it back just in time to catch the beginning of the WWE Raw Visit To The Troops special.

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Excuse Me Mr.

Friday December 16 was a very good day for me. I finally had the chance to meet someone I’ve been very cool with for over a year. I was on my way to The Sidewalk Cafe to meet my friend. I was running late as usual. I was tempted to hop on the express bus sitting outside my building but decided to take my chances on the subway.

I get out of my building & start the sub 10 minute walk to the Parkchester station. I get there & wait for about 5-6 minutes until a downtown 6 shows up. I’m looking at the time & knew I was sticking with the plan of attack I made before I left. I would take the 6 to 125th St & hope an express is there or is about to pull in. I would then take the express to 14th St/Union Sq & hop a cab to my destination.

The train ride to 125th St was quick & painless. My luck was good as once the train pulled in & I walked across the platform, an express was pulling into the station. I get on the first car of the 5 (6906) & take a seat in the middle of the train. I’m listening to some music & everything seems fine until we get to Grand Central/42nd St.

When the train pulls into the station, a man with very kinky hair gets on through the first door with a beverage in hand. I only glanced at him & went back to my own world I was in. I’m getting into my music & all of a sudden I heard a loud burp. The burp was very loud as my headphones tend to tone out all noises around me yet I heard this loud & clear. I thought I might have been hearing things at first but I was not. The faces of a few people across from me told the story.

I thought to myself no big deal as the shock of the moment wore off. However the man continued to produce one burp after another. I took a glance at him again & could tell this guy wasn’t all there. When I took a long look at him, his face told me how disturbed he really was. I think he was enjoying burping & freaking out some of the people around him. I guess the smell or the thought of burping must have turned off two kids who were with their family. The kids walked away from his direction & down to the other side of the train car.

My opinion is when you see someone who looks crazy or is acting crazy, stay as calm as possible & ignore them. I will never understand why some feel the need to make comments loud & sometimes directly to the person. I always notice the people who do this are so much smaller too! I guess they have a death wish.

The ride between 42nd St/Grand Central & 14th St/Union Sq couldn’t go by fast enough. I wanted to get off the train to get away from this nut & I just wanted to get to the Sidewalk. As luck would have it, the man got off at my stop. I fixed my bag & went up the stairs. I don’t know where he ended up going but thankfully I didn’t have to see or hear him again!

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Farewell & Goodnight

Friday December 2nd, 2005 was another historic day for yours truly. I decided to do something I had never done before. What might you ask? I rode a Command bus! I’ll be honest, I am really bad in regards to riding buses.

When I was younger, I used to ride them because when I was with family, I rarely had to be on a subway. I either was in a car or a bus. As I grew older & became a railfan, my dedication as leaned heavily towards the rails. So what made me ride Command you ask?

I had to take part in the farewell to Command. The MTA as part of their overall plan to take over private bus routes had Command as the next to go. I had thought about joining the fan trip some had planned but decided I wanted to go alone. I had this grand vision of riding every Command route end to end over 3 days. However I didn’t but that came as no surprise.

The first route I planned on taking was the only limited stop route on their roster which was the B103. I had to do this route as it only ran Monday – Friday. I got a late start to the day so the B103 was the only route I planned on doing for Friday. The plan was to ride it via a round trip. The timing however didn’t work out since I got out of my house way too late.

My plan of action was to take the 6 down to 14th St/Union Sq & take the L out to the Rockaway Pkwy station so I could catch the last ever westbound bus. However as I was on the L, I realized I wouldn’t make the last ever westbound bus which departed at 5:03. I now knew I needed an on the fly adjustment as far as my plan goes.

The new course of action had me jumping off the L at Broadway Junction so I could catch an A to Jay St/Borough Hall. I figured I could make one of the last eastbound buses. The last eastbound bus departed at 6:10PM. I knew that I would easily make either the next to last or last bus unless a huge roadblock came up.

I’m happy to report that my adjusted plans worked out great. I got there with plenty of time to spare & I ended up catching the next to last ever eastbound B103. The bus was scheduled to depart at 5:40PM but it left a couple of minutes earlier.

When the doors closed at the first stop & we are on our way, I took a deep breath & got ready to soak up the entire experience on bus #4925. In the end, I enjoyed the entire ride & felt happy I got a chance to say I rode a Command bus.

My only regret would be the fact I never took a picture of 4925. However I won’t let that take away from the moment that ended up being my one & only ride on a Command bus.

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Let Me Introduce The Two Of You

I’ll be honest upfront. I completely forgot to blog about the events of November 29, 2005. I’ll do so now as I’m finishing the site on this early Christmas morning. November 29, 2005 was the first day the public got to see the R160B in person. The event was being held at the Hoyt/Schermerhorn station between the hours of 2PM & 7PM.

I knew I would be at this event one way or another since I no longer lived in a cave. Over the years I haven’t had luck in attending any events such as this, MOD trips, etc… as getting to them was difficult or sometimes out of the question. Since I had moved down to the Bronx, I knew attending would be possible.

The event had a double purpose as it also would be the first event for my new camera. The plan was to arrive early so I could avoid the possible huge crowds of kids after school & people leaving work. I

I arrived a short time after 2PM. As the train I was on pulled into the station, I saw the car sitting there in all its glory. When I departed the train, I figured I’d hop up a staircase & down another. I was wrong however & ended up having to ask someone how to get to the normally unused platform.

I eventually found my own way & went down the stairs slowly as I wanted to soak in the entire atmosphere. When I reached the platform, I was approached by an employee who asked if I wanted to take a survey after checking out the display. I agreed & took my survey on board.

I boarded the train & was blown away by how hi-tech the new display looked. I was very impressed with the layout of the display as well as its clarity. The next step for me was to find a spot where I could take a seat. I wanted a seat so I could fill out the survey as well as take out the camera for some pictures.

I took a ton of pictures as I was testing out different settings on the camera as well as trying to catch the ever changing display. I eventually got all the shots I needed & decided to head to the transit museum store. I asked someone what time it closed & was given misinformation. When I arrived at the doors to the museum store, I was told they were closed.

Since I couldn’t get what I wanted from the store, I decided to go back to the Hoyt/Schermerhorn station & continue to test out the camera. In the end, I took a ton of shots & was quite happy with the results.

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All Aboard The Comedy Train

The day was Tuesday November 15 & the journey had already begun. I woke up with the specific intention of shooting along the Brighton line. The trip started with the usual, a ride on the Bx5. I was running late so I decided to just catch my dad’s bus going towards West Farms. The plan was to hop on the 5 at Simpson St & take it to 14th St/Union Sq for the Q.

The 5 came pretty quickly. I boarded car 6833 & was on my way. I didn’t get a corner seat like I prefer. I ended up getting one in the middle of the train. I happened to notice a young attractive hispanic woman sit across from me. The ride was a typical one until the train arrived at 125th St. When the doors opened, 2 hispanic guys got on. When I first spotted one of the guys, I just knew he was a smart ass. My original assumption was correct.

He spotted the same woman & must have lost his focus. He originally planned on sitting next to me which would have him across from her. He then decided he should sit directly next to her with his friend sitting next to me. I thought that was the end of it but it wasn’t. He now got up again & started asking the woman where he should sit.

She looked at him like wtf are you asking me this question for. She politely told him he could sit on any of the seats as it didn’t matter to her. He asked her at least 3 times. I guess this is a new technique in flirting with someone. He finally makes the earth shattering decision to sit next to her. Well he now felt a connection I suppose & felt the need to try & chat her up.

She clearly wanted to laugh at whatever lame conversation he was offering up. I admit I was trying not to laugh myself. There was a senior citizen sitting next to him trying not to laugh at him either. We all deserved medals for not doing so. I think his friend found it hilarious as he just chuckled.

I felt pity towards the young woman. The first reason is obvious. I felt bad she had to sit next to this clown. The second reason I felt bad was because she was clearly trying to listen to music on her mp3 player. She tried to continue listening but it was to no avail as he didn’t get a clue or if he did, he ignored it.

She eventually told him that she was trying to listen to music & he finally backed off. Hello genius, you should have figured that she was listening to music when she was holding her mp3 player in her hand the whole time. The circus came to an end at 86th St when she got off. However the comedy continued.

The next round of comedy began in the same vicinity. There was a black woman who looked to be in her mid to late 20’s who sat near the end of the bench seat. She looked to be relaxing as she had her eyes closed. When the train reached 86th St, a white couple got on the train. The couple wanted to sit next to each other but couldn’t.

The woman sat to the right of the black woman & her boyfriend sat to the left of the black woman. They started having a conversation The black woman opened her eyes & was like “oh no you aren’t talking across me, do you two want to sit next to each other?” The couple agreed & seat positions were switched.

I just found it hilarious how she said it. One part of me found the humor in it while the other half found the diva like attitude of it annoying. No offense but the subway isn’t a place meant to rest or sleep. If someone conversing will bother you then the subway isn’t the place for you! The rest of the ride went by without incident. However I can’t say it wasn’t an entertaining ride!

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