“If you don’t like it, get a car!” – TTC driver

I must have had another heart attack yesterday when I learned that the TTC may consider fare increases to $3 and bus passes to $126. There must be something extremely inefficient in a partly subsidized transit system that’s services costs are becoming closer and closer to cab fare. And I’m further perturbed upon learning that New York’s metro pass is $70, and Montreal is $64! That’s half price!

The argument I hear back is that Toronto is a bigger city. Yes, true, but there are more people in that city, and more people mean more taxes and more ridership. It makes me really interested to hear a forensic accountants take on the TTC after reading their balance sheets. Something is definitely wrong here.

What’s also wrong is the attitude of a bus driver on the 68 warden today who was yelling at these women to pay the full bus fare. They paid the student fare but didn’t have a student card. “STUDENT CARD OR ADULT FARE!” She shouted. I didn’t think there was a need to embarrass these women with their wal-mart shopping bags. They paid the full fare at once, but the driver still was shouting at them with an almost psychotic tone. Maintaining their dignity, they yelled back at her, bitch this and shut up that. “Pff, the bus fare is already too much,” one of the women retorted.

“If you don’t like it, get a car!” She yelled so condescendingly as if that was an option people aspire to, as if being in poverty was a filthy and lowly crime.

Is this the option we are forced to consider from what was supposed to be the public’s transit, the proletariats chariot?

Hasn’t anyone understood by now that it makes no logistical sense for everyone to be driving a car? Do we need our streets to be clogged with anymore grid lock, or more lanes paved to add to our unaesthetic landscape? Do we need more smog clouding our air and into our lungs?

I’ve been to other cities, and I feel like Toronto is the only place where people take the bus only if they couldn’t afford a car. Countless times I’ve seen guys browsing through the listings of auto magazines in the bus. I hear of people foolishly slaving off for minimum wage to get their wagon. Many times I’ve received pity from people when I told them I don’t have a car. This childish materialistic attitude has got to change. I keep on trying to show people they have been misled in the empty promises and dreams of car culture!

The goal is to get from place to place fast. The only efficient way for people to be transported in a city is undoubtedly properly managed public transit.

Why can’t decision makers put the politics aside and realize this?

We need to increase service! We need to decrease the fare!

I always believed a two way fare of public transit should be less than half of an hourly minimum wage… that’s around $9, and the proposed 2 way bus fare is at $6, that’s 2/3rds of the way. It’s not fair. The system is bound to collapse!

If the driver had to ask me, I’d say, No, I don’t like it- but I won’t get a car- but I will ride my bike. The fight for cheaper bus far and the push for increased services seems like a losing battle.  I think my energy is best put towards the push for indoor bike lanes for winter. Once that’s built, we’ll have full mobility around the city and there won’t be a need to pay someone 80K+ a year for each lane.

Annual resolution as of Nov. 3

I need to kick some bad habits.

So far, I’ve won a few challenging battles. When I was six I taught myself to stop stuttering. A few years ago I completely quit minesweeper.

I know what I want to do, but minor time management issues gets in the way. I make the conscious effort to time myself, look at the watch here and there, but it’s not enough. Inefficiency must be clear and gone for good.

The only way it will be solved is to make it official, write it out somewhere, on my walls and on a public blog so people can remind me of these self-promises. I won’t wait until new years or birthdays to make radical changes to my life!

From now on…

1. I promise to sleep not a minute more or less than than 8 hours a night

2. I will never put a second into spacing out and/or daydreaming

3. Log onto the internet and check e-mails only once a day

4. I will put a full hearted effort into all my endeavors

5. 8 hours a day towards the projects… no exceptions. ever.

A friend of mine who recently became a millionaire in the recent years once told me, “if you fail to plan, then plan to fail”

Ramblin’ on about Flakes

The plagues that run through my life, lift me up with hope, high and very dryly ringing me down, oh the many memories I have of flakes. The despondent to utter failure!

Admittedly, I might have been one on very few occasions in my life, though not intentionally and not recently… especially upon my entrance to adulthood… post uni… a phase more or less characterized as time being money and money being time. But now I ain’t got none…

Alas, it happens. how do I prevent it? use judgment?

maybe I’ll think more clearly in the morning. I’ll get back to you!

A good deed for the day.

A foreign Asian lady sat in the bus, scrutinizing a paper she had handwritten of various English words with their Chinese translation. She bravely went as far as asking the lady in front of her to pronounce a word… she did, but very nonchalantly… a one word answer and then back to listening to her Ipod. Is this how we welcome our new and eager Canadians?

I could see from my seat just how many spelling errors there were, not to mention the letters in themselves were drawn out incorrectly!

My sense of moral and civic duty prompted me to get up from my seat and help the foreigner! I smiled and pointed at the paper with my pen handy.

She smiled back and nodded as I gently tugged the paper away and began to correct each word… slowlyy.. showing her each of the changes.

She then tried to pronounce the word. Barkcolkei. No! BBbbbbrrrroooooCCCCCoooollliiiii, I said, with a sincere smile. I helped her with each word until we reached the subway station. She said “Thank you”.

I’m glad I made myself useful as opposed to vegetating in a bus with my ipod on. Why didn’t that other lady have the same sense of duty? What was she doing that was so important? What songs were on her ipod that she hasn’t heard before?

The bus is the most boring place to be,I’d go as far as saying dehumanizing. There’s no stimulation for the mind! I could try reading, but I easily get car-sick, so I listen to some podcasts, but those are hard to hear with the blaring bus driving sounds.

Then I got an idea- teaching English in the bus… decently intelligent minds during their daily long commutes to downtown will be made useful by pairing up with an eager learner to impart their knowledge in basic English. And it will be the best way to integrate new people and involve our citizens in our community! Sounds simple- why not!?

Who’s reading this?

Although I have older posts from years ago, technically this blog started a few weeks back, and since then I’ve been getting a steady increase of hits. The first few days it was at 0, then it slowly increased by 1, then 2, then sometimes 4, and today its around 5. That may be a small number to you, but it’s big considering that this blog is not being advertised at all.

Well, I’m lying, I only made a mention of it on my facebook profile, but I doubt anyone visits that. I only told 2 people about this blog.

So who are the other 3 people? Maybe those 2 people I told don’t visit everyday or at all, so it could be really 5 unknown people. The hits do not come from a search on google, if it has, the statistics info would have made me aware. So fess up! Who are you? Reveal yourself!

Or at least message me a riddle of clues indicating your identity!

Are you a friend? Are you a friend of a friend? Friend of an enemy?Just an enemy? Do I even know you?

Please feed my curiosity! I’m just dying to know!