Crazy commuting tales

We all have seen nutty stuff on the CTA. Share your crazy commuting stories here in a comment.

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  • SB #11 Saturday afternoon. A small boy kept asking his mom why the lady in the seat across the aisle from them was talking to her Diet Coke. "She's on the phone, you need to be quiet," says the mom. "I don't see a phone," says the boy. "She must have it on the other side of her head, where you can't see it," says the mom, "So we need to be quiet, so she can talk on her phone."

    I was sitting behind the woman, she was talking to her Diet Coke.

  • Another Lincoln bus story: Saturday afternoon the SB #11 was re-routed around Maifest in Lincoln Square. I wasn't on the bus, I was waiting for another at the corner of Lincoln and Montrose. The SB bus was on the corner, stopped at a red light on Montrose, about to turn south and continue its normal route on Lincoln. I saw the bus driver get off, cross Montrose, get the people waiting for him at his normal stop (on Lincoln, north of the intersection) and take them across the street so they didn't miss the bus.

    I wish I'd gotten his badge number, I'd certainly call the CTA and tell them about this wonderful guy.

  • What's with the speedy bus drivers? Yesterday when I exited an 80, the bus driver started moving while I was stepping off of the bus via the back doors.
    Today one bus (144) kept jerking to a start at bus stops, and I slipped as I was walking to the back to the bus. A few others tripped a bit.
    Later, I watched a 135 turn across an intersection directly in front of an on-coming fire truck and ambulance, lights and sirens blaring. The fire truck had to come to a stop lest it crash into the bus.
    Their drivers aren't paying attention at all, and it's dangerous!

  • In reply to psych12:

    The bus has an interlock system that will not allow the bus to move while the rear door is open, in other words, you are a liar. The driver did not take off while you were still stepping off the bus.

  • In reply to psych12:

    I've seen a lot of grooming on board that should have been done at home, but until Friday afternoon I had never seen this. NB Lincoln bus, about 3 in the afternoon. A 60ish looking man pulled out a stick of deodorant, unbuttoned the top two or three buttons on his shirt, pulled up his T shirt and applied the deodorant to his armpits.

  • In reply to psych12:

    This happened many years ago, but I think the story is still worth telling...

    Gawd, this has to be around the late summer/early fall of 1983 (I think). It was a Saturday night, and the 8 Halsted had just picked up a good number of passengers from the Englewood Station and at 63rd Street. It was one of the older raggedy green and white GM buses with the cushioned green seats that was long before the days of air-conditioning. The bus was pretty somber as it headed north. People were just tired I guess and wanted to get to where they were going. One of the passengers had a boom box and turned it on. The music was a nice diversion and cut through the silence, so as the driver, I didn't say anything. By the time we got to Garfield Boulevard, the next song to cue up was the hip-hop version of "Lean On Me" (I can't recall who does that). The guy with the boom box turned it up a little, and one by one, people started to sing along. Soon, the entire bus was rocking with the chorus of the song. Hell, I was even singing! By the time we were at 47th Street, the song was over, the boom box quieted and the people on the bus were in a much better mood than they were a few blocks ago. Some people were in tears, but all were smiling, and sharing the moment with each other! It was contagious! They all shared in a moment. We all did! By the time the bus reached Roosevelt Road the moment had passed, and it was back to normalcy.

    It's just one of many adventures that stick out in my mind from a long career at CTA.

  • In reply to psych12:

    I wasn't on a bus or train, but I was at a bus stop when this happened:

    Late June/July of last year I was at the corner of Broadway and Lawrence waiting for a bus to head down to the Blue Line. This obviously out of it lady comes walking up the street. I was leaning against the wall and had just put my cell phone away and there was a guy and a gal standing at the curb. The "Crazy Lady" walks over to the pair and mumbles some stuff to the gal and starts to walk off, but then turns around and goes back to mumble some more stuff, about the only thing we understood was "Stick it where the sun don't shine". The "Crazy Lady" then walked over to me, leaned in as if to say something, and instead of saying anything cocked back her leg and jabbed her knee into my groin. The "man reflex" of twisting kicked in to dodge most of the blow. But she was gone before I could really grasp what happened. The pair at the curb asked me if I was ok and it was quite the topic, along with other things about Uptown for the few blocks they were on.

  • In reply to psych12:

    Friday afternoon, a NB Western bus (for a change). I''m

  • In reply to psych12:

    Sorry about that. Anyway, Friday PM, Western bus. I'm sitting across from the eixt. Guy behind me talking on his phone, sounding like he's in a Mamet play, telling whoever it is he's talking to exactly what he has coming to him. He is so loud the driver pulls over mid block and tells him to keep it clean and keep it down or get off the bus. Mr. Tough Talker turns out to be not so tough when confronted by a skinny CTA bus driver. He puts his phone away, apologizes, and is quiet for the rest of my ride.

  • In reply to psych12:

    I've been riding the Orange line to and from work for about 4 years now, so I've grown accustomed to most of the grooming that riders (overwhelmingly females) do on the train - applying makeup, curling eyelashes, etc). However, I was appalled by what I saw last week.

    I was sitting in a rear-facing seat and a young woman sat down in the center-facing seat that was directly in front of me. After a few minutes, she removes a compact from her purse, opens it so that she could use the mirror, removes a pair of tweezers from her purse, and proceeds to remove every rogue hair on her face and neck - then proceeds to pluck her eyebrows. Each hair she removed was carefully placed into the compact. She continued this from Roosevelt all the way to Pulaski.

  • In reply to djrocks:

    That is so gross I have seen women do the same thing, even plucking upper lip hairs, in public youd think they would save that stuff for when they get home. why was she saving the hairs uhhgh

  • In reply to psych12:

    "Overheard on the #66 Chicago"

    (Spoken to no one in particular, without preamble, and appropos of nothing)

    Cuz when a man walk into Burger King,
    a woman treat him like a king.
    Then another man walk in, and....
    well, it don't do for men to be fighting over a woman.

    I had me a Phillippine woman once.
    She had her two black men on the side.

    That's why I go to Mcdonalds.

    (Exeunt. Out of the bus, and into a nearby McDonalds)

  • In reply to psych12:

    SB Red Line just past rush hour. Man in his 30s taking up two seats, he's on the outside seat with his briefcase on the window seat. Older (than him anyway) woman standing just a little too close for his comfort, with her purse and a shopping bag swinging in his face. The bag hits him as we go around a curve and he asks her to stand back a little. She refuses, says if he lets her sit down, then there's no problem. He refuses. She inches closer, he gets hit again. Disgusted, he gets up and stands by the door. She sits, in the window seat, leaving the aisle seat for anyone who wants it.

  • In reply to psych12:

    ah.. was on the way home from class, so i caught the #18 just in time. i was getting comfortable in my seat, & looked around at the other passengers. i'm sure everyone else noticed the girl who was chatting away on her phone. HACKKKK...TUH! (i thought to my self, this idiot spit on the bus!) so i turned around and gave her a nasty look! she was surprised that someone noticed it, because her eyes were as wide as dinner plates, and she stared right back at me. she continued blabbing on the phone with her friend, and even made it clear enough for me to hear "if this bitch turn around and look at me again..." ok, she was just mad that i caught her being a pig. before i got off the bus, i let the driver know. when i started to walk home, i was being paranoid and i wanted to make sure she didn't follow me. i continued to do this side-stepping crab walk down the block.. i'll never sit in the seat right before the rear doors ever again.

  • In reply to psych12:

    yesterday on the CTA #55 to Midway, just before the western stop, two, well, kids really, got on through the rear door of the bus. One walked up to were I was seated and said something to me. I ignored him and then he reached out his hand trying to put his hand in my pocket. I grabbed his arm and he had the audacity to ask me "WTF are you doing? gimme the ipod" as if he had a right to it. I didnt let him go and said no to his request. He struggled and the other guy ran up and punched me in the face, causing no real damage but a rather bad nose bleed. i let the other go and they both ran off the bus. The whole time, no one said or did anything, and the bus driver just watched as they got on, through the rear door mind you, and ran off.. afterwards, the other passengers seemed more worried about getting home than asking if i was okay. One did offer me a tissue, but i was bleeding ALOT... they all got on the next bus and left, and the bus driver stayed with me till the police arrived, but she called her supervisor first, NOT the police???

  • In reply to saga13:

    You should have done more than just grab their arm. How could nobody on the bus have helped you?

  • In reply to saga13:

    Everytime I go to the Jackson stop, there are so-called "performers" doing incredibly *bleep* music, be it rap or the twangy douchebag type of guitar playing. Or a woman sitting lazily on a bench singing. I would like to wait for the train peacefully, I can hear the last woman through my headphones! They all have those performer permits. I honestly have considered writing on a piece of paper "You suck" and putting it in their guitar case. I will not, not ever give money to a panhandler crossing from train car to train car, nor one of those "performers". It's obnoxious. One Sunday there was an awful racket coming from the tunnel to the Blue Line, it sounded like an animal was being murdered along with some looped bass beats. This practice needs to stop.

  • In reply to saga13:

    I read stories like this, and I Democratic Party-voting, liberal heart becomes more hardened every day to the point that I consider purchasing pepper spray or wishing Illinois had a conceal and carry law.

    Except my friends would joke that I'd be the first to misuse the law to include random shootings of bus boys clearing plates before I've finished them.

  • In reply to saga13:

    They need to do something about panhandlers parking themselves outside CTA stations. I live near the Lawrence Line and there's always at least one guy, grinning like a loon, rocking on his heels ready to harass anybody coming off the train. Only the thought of jail kept me from punching him in the face after the 8th time he invaded my personal space. The station agent does *bleep*ing nothing about it.

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    And how do they decide who gets the prime begging spot? Arm wrestling? Peener length?

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    Noclevername: I've heard cops says at CAPS meeting that it is not against the law to ask someone for money -- as long as it's not aggressive panhandling.

    If you are in fear for your safety by the aggressive panhandling, then you can sign a criminal complaint against the panhandler for what's called simple assault. But you have to sign the complaint and then appear in court.

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    I think I will, they often put their hands on me or get close enough to try and snatch my cellphone. Enough is enough.

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    The homeless are a MAJOR problem in Uptown, I often imagine the music to "Thriller" as they limp and stagger up and down Lawrence and Broadway.

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    If they put their hands on you, just deck 'em. Defending yourself will not result in arrest. Besides, who would the cops believe, you or some bum?

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    I got out of work last night, it was cold, there was a bus coming, so I got on it rather than walk to the train. I noticed (and appreciated) a fresh minty smell to the bus. Then I noticed the driver was flossing his teeth as he drove. He was using a flosser so he did have one hand on the wheel, and it's not texting, but it's still distracted driving. I got off at the next stop and walked to the train.

  • In reply to Noclevername:

    A few weeks ago, I was heading down on the Red Line from Howard to downtown, and along the way, a few people entered the car with LIVE snakes. Everyone made the comment "snakes on a train." (This was a Saturday evening, and it was 2 weeks ago. They weren't suspicious-acting, and thank goodness I'm not deathly afraid of snakes.

  • In reply to psych12:

    Sunday morning, on the way to work. I come out of the subway to find not the passing shower predicted, but a full out thunderstorm with drenching rain and a very close lightening strike. So instead of walking the 5 blocks, I wait it out in a bus shelter, complete with crazy person. He was literally foaming at the mouth. He explained to me in great detail the storm was St Peter looking for him because he had married St Peter's wife and now had to be punished for that. The bus came within 5 minutes. It was a Christmas bus. It had some female pop singer belting out "Do You Hear What I Hear" which I considered appropriate, having spent a little too much time with someone hearing voices I couldn't hear.

  • In reply to Cheryl:

    I think that guy was telling me he did a math equation and the word computer equaled 666 in his equation. Also he said that the government was putting computer chips in people to control them. I told him I used to have that job, it had great benefits but I got laid off. He got very frightened and went to the other side of the bus.

  • In reply to Cheryl:

    Hey Everyone - While about to exit the #50 Damen bus yesterday, in the front of the bus, right by the driver, no less, my cell phone (yeah, an iPhone) was stolen out of the back of my purse. The pickpocket used a very common ploy, which is why I'm sharing, so those of you who aren't familiar with this can be even more wary in these bad economic times: I was carrying a lot of bags, and he distracted me by telling me that something was falling out of one of them. I was wearing a shoulder bag, with a zipper in the main compartment, but an open pocket in the back. So, my guess is that he reached for whatever was easy to grab while he had me looking at the plastic shopping bag (of course there was nothing falling out), and came up with the phone, the only thing in there. So, riders beware. I have called the garage the bus came out of, and supposedly they're going to check the tapes of the cameras on the bus, but realistically, that is not going to get my phone back. I also put my e-mail address on the outside of the phone, so if he dumped it off and it's found, some honest person can reach me.

  • In reply to Cheryl:

    I managed to catch the Politeness Bus today. Which is much cooler than the Santa train, btw. Young people jumped up and offered their seats to everyone who looked to be over 50. I heard a lot of language I'm not used to on transit--phrases like 'excuse me' and 'thank you.' It was really strange.

  • I got on a SB Red Line train at Fullerton this (sunday) morning about 9 AM. Every person in the car I got on was asleep.

  • So last night on a WB #66 I got to watch a women eat pork rinds, BBQ-flavored Fritos, and Cheetos, all at the some time. She'd eat a rind, then a handful of Fritos, then a handful of Cheetos, then repeat the sequence. She was washing it all down with bottled green tea.

  • So...last Monday after jury duty, I got off the Red Line at Bryn Mawr and picked up my dry cleaning. I was going to walk home, but I saw a #84 Peterson bus waiting. Now, from prior experiences, I know that sometimes you get on the bus at the Bryn Mawr Red Line station, you wait...sometimes up to 15 minutes. So I got in line to board, and before I zap my Chicago Card, I asked the driver what time he leaves. He very angrily said, "You're holding up the line! The sooner you get on, the sooner we can leave!" Hmm...okay...

    So as I was walking back after I zapped my card, I said, "Okay, just asking because sometimes the bus doesn't leave for a while." I'm near the back of the bus by now, and he yells at me, "And you're STILL gonna have to wait because you're holding everybody up!" Geez! Just answer the effing question! And he keeps giving me a dirty look in the rear-view mirror.

    I took out the my cell phone and typed in the bus number in the "Notepad" function. When I got off, I took note of the route number. I crossed the street, parallel to the bus (the bus was going west, I crossed the intersection west-bound) and in the middle of the intersection, the driver honked the horn repeatedly until I looked. He stopped in the middle of the intersection (gee, he seemed in such a rush to get going earlier!), opened the door, pointed to his badge, and yelled, "DID YOU GET IT?! DID YOU GET IT?!"

    Soon as I got home, I filled out the "mystery shopper" survey.

    And not too long later, I had to go to the Old Town School of Folk Music. I stepped out, and saw that a #84 bus was right I boarded that...AND IT WAS THE SAME EFFING DRIVER!!! I wondered to myself how he got to Central and Caldwell and back so quickly, considering it takes me just as long to drive there WITHOUT having to pick up and drop off passengers...ughgh...didn't get any lip from him this time, but plenty of dirty looks...

  • In reply to dauber:


  • In reply to dauber:

    Tuesday 06.01.10, about 09.45ish, I waited for the 81W bus at Cumberland & Catherine. I read the sign (bus drivers complain passengers don't read the sign) -- it said 81W (bus #544, one of the smaller buses). Upon boarding, the recorded message said "69 Cumberland". Why didn't the driver change the sign??
    This happened 2 weeks ago at Cumberland & Catalpa when I waited for a 69 bus around noon. A bus (#530) went by with 81W on its sign. When it made the loop, I motioned to the driver to change the sign. He motioned that he couldn't. Then I mouthed "How was I supposed to know?" This incident I called CTA & complained (but didn't leave my name). Apparently it didn't do any good because it happened again. At least put a large cardboard sign in the window to let people know what bus number it is! Waiting 20-30 minutes for the next bus is ridiculous just because the driver doesn't have the proper sign displayed!
    (The above was emailed to CTA. I wonder what BS reply they'll give!)

  • In reply to daCubsCat:

    I received an email from CTA regarding this:

    "Thank you for your complaint. We apologize for your poor travel experience. Your information has been forwarded to the responsible General Manager for corrective action. We have also alerted management to the signage malfunction.

    "Again, we are sorry for the inconvenience, and we appreciate you taking the time to report this incident.


    LOL! Let's see IF anything gets done!

  • In reply to daCubsCat:

    This may be the single worst eye-witness account of an accident, but I was just on that SB 148 that hit an SUV on Lake Shore Drive. The accident happened just about 9 AM maybe a quarter of a mile south of Belmont. I had a window seat, I was reading, I didn't notice anything until the woman next to me grabbed my arm to keep from falling into the aisle. Then bam! We hit the SUV. It's amazing the people standing in front of the yellow line didn't go through the windshield. Apparently the driver of the car swerved to miss something (somebody told me ducks, but I don't know) and that's when the bus hit him. The tail of the car was smashed in, the windshield of the bus was broken, and the front wheel of the bike that was in the carrier on the front of the bus is toast. We, the passengers, were on two other buses (another 148 and a 144) before the police arrived. Many passengers stopped to make sure our driver was okay and to commiserate with him before getting on the other buses. I even got to work on time.

  • In reply to daCubsCat:

    OK, any time you ride the CTA, you might have the misfortune to see the lice lady or someone who is in fact talking to themselves. It goes with the territory. But my worst expierence with a commuting mission was with the Pace 332 bus. The Pace buses leave a lot to be desired, bad enough to make the CTA look good by comparison. But 2 days in a row I discovered that a Hispanic dared to tell me to "let the ladies on first" and I'm sure he knew that good seats on those Orion buses are very few. I guess he never got the memo that seats are not assigned like you find on planes with the boarding passes. Noting this idiot, I the same day bought a car. I'm glad I no longer work at the southernmost edge of the airport. Damn, do those Pace buses suck. I decided that those crappy bouncy seats were not worth going to jail over. Fresh approach to public transit? Try the CTA instead! Truth be told, I also use the CTA, for bar missions and as needed if the car isn't working. The CTA is a million times better than Pace.

  • Here's a crazy commuting tale submitted via email by Jonathan.

    I was on the Purple Line Express this morning, going north. I got on at Belmont and we had just left the station when a guy comes through the emergency door between the cars. He announces that he's homeless and hungry (No, it wasn't that guy. I've never seen this guy before.) and goes on to ask if anyone could give him some money. After a while, when it's clear he's not going to get any takers, he grumbles and moves to one of the doorways. As we pass Sheridan, he pulls the emergency door release. The train, of course, stops. He hops off and walks down the platform like this is normal. The few of us on the car who saw what happened look at each other in relative disbelief. A couple minutes later, the conductor comes back and asks what happened. A lady explains what we saw and the conductor radios in the incident in a "I can't believe some people" voice and closes the door.

  • i will just copy the email/letter (and add some good comments in parenthesis) that i am sending all over the place here. if anyone has any ideas of media,. political or other outlets that you think this should be sent to, please contact me. thank you.
    To Whom It May Concern,

    Today, Saturday August 27, 2011, I was discriminated against, harassed
    and could have been hurt or injured by the actions a CTA bus driver. His badge
    number is 40658 and he was operating the Sheridan 151 bus number 4140
    traveling north right about noon. I plan to be relentless about this
    situation. A copy of this email in letter format is being sent to the
    CTA Headquarters, The mayor's office, The Chicago Sun Times, The
    Chicago Tribune, in addition to any other local transit, media and
    political outlets that I can obtain contact information for. In
    addition I will be going down to the CTA headquarters to discuss this
    in person with the highest in command person available. I want this
    CTA worker be terminated immediately and will not back down until it
    can be proven to me that he has been.

    Today has been a beautiful summer time Saturday, and a little before
    noon I left my home at Irving Park and Western Ave. to meet my friend
    at Foster Ave Beach. I boarded the Irving Park 80 bus, traveling east,
    and got off at Sheridan Ave to catch the 151 Sheridan Bus traveling
    north to Foster Ave. I was dropped off from the 80 bus on the
    southeast corner of Irving Park Rd and was about to cross over to the
    northeast corner and then from there to the northwest corner, where,
    on Sheridan Ave., the bus stop is. I had two seconds left on the
    traffic light and decided to hurry on my feet for it as the 151 bus
    was sitting on that northeast corner. I saw the bus driver letting two
    people that were steps in front of me and whom had just gotten off
    the same 80 bus as me on to the bus at that northeast corner. I went
    to the door expecting to be let on also, as to not miss the bus who's
    stop was still across the street on and the light about to turn green. The driver shut the doors in my face, i knocked on them
    thinking maybe he somehow didn't see me and he was clearly ignoring
    me. He then started driving as the light had then turned green. I
    then walked swiftly to the actual stop, across the street and got on.
    Upon getting on the bus I said, "If you needed me to go to the bus
    stop, you could have just said something and not shut the doors in my
    face; but regardless you, don't let two customers on and not the
    third. That is just wrong." His response was, "The bus stop is over
    here". I responded "I know that, but you don't let two customers on
    over there and then shut the doors in the third customer's face". He then
    told me "If you know the bus stop is over here that is where you
    should have been waiting". I then argued again, "But you let two
    customers on over there. I expected the same as I got off the same bus
    as them and was steps behind. I didn't want to miss the bus." His
    response "Shut the fuck up". Our conversation from there went much
    like this:
    Me: Excuse Me?? You just crossed the line. I am taking down your
    information and reporting you.
    Him: "Go ahead, take it down you are just lazy and didn't want to
    cross the street"
    KIDDING ME??? I was trying not to miss the bus and you let others on.
    I then ran to the bus stop when you closed the doors in my face"
    Him: "You are a fat ass. Its just laziness"

    I am overweight, but I should never ever be called "lazy" (trust, me, I am FAR from it!!!) and a "fat
    ass" by ANYONE as a result, not to mention a city bus driver, in
    uniform. Nor should I ever be told to "shut the fuck up" when I am
    civilly making a complaint to the bus driver about the way he had just
    treated me.

    I continued to take down his information at the front of the bus,
    frazzled, angry and yelling at him for treating me the way he just
    did. Passengers on the bus were appalled by the way they had just
    witness me being treated by the driver and kept saying "make sure you
    get his information", "report this man!!" and the such. I was shaking
    angrily, threatening to call the police and even asked him to stop and
    leave me off where we saw a cop on duty, to which he continued to
    drive by. I did want to call the police but was shaking too hard with
    anger to do so. He then told me that I was "harassing" him (wait. who is
    harassing who?!) and to "go to the back of the bus NOW, I don't have to
    take this. You are a lazy fat ass, go back to the BACK OF THE BUS". I
    became so appalled by his continuous disrespect, harassment and
    discrimination that I grew silent, my jaw dropped to the floor. I am
    an extremely peaceful, easy going drama free person and have never
    ever in 31 years of life laid a hand on anyone. All I could think
    about at this point was how badly I wanted to smack and/or punch this
    man, and convince myself that was a really bad idea. This was one of the angriest moments of my life, if not THE angriest. I responded, in
    order to save myself from getting a potential assault charge, "You let
    me off this bus NOW!" to which he did. This was right around the
    Montrose/Broadway stop. As I was walking towards the door, he jerked
    the brakes, making me almost fall. I could tell by the way he looked
    at me that he did it on purpose. I have a reoccurring knee injury and
    even a wrong step as a result of him jerking the bus, purposefully,
    could have seriously injured me. The fact of the matter is, even if I
    didn't have a reoccurring knee injury, that stunt could have seriously
    hurt me, had I completely lost my balance during the brake jerk.

    I then got on a bus immediately behind him (lucky me that there was one). When I got to my final
    destination, I got off that bus and saw his pull up behind. He was
    coming off the bus for a break, I suppose, and I screamed at him, "I
    hope you are preparing yourself mentally to be jobless, I will be
    relentless about what just happened until I know you have been fired."
    He kept screaming at me, as I was walking, "I'm off the bus now!! I
    can do and say whatever I want. (was this comment a threat to show he
    was trying to fight me? I am a female, i certainly hope not. but damn, I wish he woulda taken a swing at me!!!!! that would have been awesome.). You're a
    fat ass. You are a fucking fat ass". As he is screaming this, in
    uniform all the passer bys are looking at him with disgust. I am not
    going to pretend like or lie and say that I wasn't screaming
    profanities back at him at the top of my lungs and with rage that I
    have scarcely experienced running through my body. I, however, was not
    the one in uniform, nor were my profanities ones of discrimination. I
    then, once I reached the corner, had the opportunity to talk to two
    passengers from the bus that were disgusted by his behavior, and got
    their contact information as witnesses to this awful series of
    disrespect and discrimination. I also asked them if they get a chance
    to please report him and the incident, and I sincerely hope that they

    I am beyond appalled and infuriated by this experienced in addition to
    traumatized emotionally, still shaking with anger about it six hours
    later. This man ruined a beautiful Saturday for me, when all he had to
    do was be civil towards me and my complaint. I wouldn't even be
    contacting the CTA, not to mention various other agencies if he would
    have never told me to "shut the fuck up" and then proceed to call me
    names like "lazy" and "fat ass" and try to demand me to "go to the
    back of the bus" then proceed to try to make me stumble or fall, in
    addition. This act was CLEARLY discriminatory, every element of it,
    and I will NOT stand to let it go unattended. There are many extremely
    kind and customer service oriented people that are capable of driving
    busses unemployed in this economically suffering city. This man does
    NOT deserve such a sought after amazing job if he cannot leave his
    discriminations at home while on it.

    I want this man FIRED. That is the only outcome that I will be
    satisfactory to me as a result of this situation. I have dealt with a
    few really nasty bus drivers, but mostly very nice and helpful ones. I
    have only had to make a phone call complaint a couple of times in my
    six years of living and using transit here in Chicago, and one phone
    call is where it stopped. in both situations. That will NOT be the
    case here. This incident has truly made me look at bus drivers
    differently today and that is not fair to them or me. I am scarred, as of now. If I had a
    realistic option other than the CTA, I would be using it from now on.

    I will be relentless about this. The sooner this man is terminated,
    the less you all will have to deal with me. In addition, as mentioned
    earlier, this email will be sent in letter format to media sources as
    well as political ones. I made attempts to report this to the police
    today but was advised there is nothing they can do, despite the fact
    that I have witnesses that this man was discriminating, harassing and
    even tried to potentially cause me injury. I might just call back and
    see if I can talk to someone else willing to take a report from me.

    I will be going down to the CTA headquarters as soon as I possibly can
    (Monday or Tuesday). I would also like the highest possible person in
    command that I can discuss this matter with to call me immediately. I
    will NOT let this situation fall through the cracks of the already
    unaccommodating customer service department of the CTA. I can promise
    you that. My phone number is (312) xxx-xxxx and I can be reached
    Mondays and Wednesdays before noon, Tuesdays after noon and almost any
    time any day of the week.

    I appreciate your immediate attention and look forwarding to hearing
    from someone immedialtely.

    Sincerely disgusted and completely outraged,
    "phatass" (changed to protect the innocent)

  • fb_avatar

    I transfer from the Purple line to the Red line in the mornings at the Belmont stop. Last week I caught some a**hole with his hand half in my purse (it was on the crook of my elbow while holding on and the zipper is broken). I grabbed my bag, smacked his hand out of it, and gave him a dirty look. I wanted SO badly to take a picture of him to post, but he was slightly behind me, and I had 2 bags and a coffee mug, so just not enough hands to do it. When I got off I noticed he was carrying what looked like a violin case (to stash stolen goods in?). I saw the same guy this morning again on the Red line, carrying the same case. He was too far away from me to get a picture, but he seemed to be crowding people and still seemed suspicious. He is short, chubby, slightly overgrown blond hair, unshaven scraggly blond whiskers, and small hands (seriously, I noticed when I looked down and saw them moving into my purse.) Look our for this douche, and take a picture to post online if you see him or catch him in the act!

  • I ride the 135 to/from my job in the Loop each weekday. This morning I had my second unpleasant experience with a particular driver, the driver of this morning's 135 southbound route that reached the intersection of Adams & LaSalle at approximately 8:00 am.

    I began noticing that the driver was not advancing the bus after being stopped when the traffic light turned green. I counted 3 times after I started paying attention. Vehicles behind the bus had to sound their horns when this driver did not advance the bus after a traffic light changed from red to green. Other vehicles from the left lane had advanced well into the next block whilst our bus remained stationary.

    The main reason for my complaint today is because this bus driver stopped the bus at the intersection of LaSalle & Adams (a designated stop) and didn’t open the doors to let passengers out. Making matters worse was the driver’s refusal to acknowledge or respond to requests to open the doors.

    As the bus approached the intersection of Adams & LaSalle, the light turned red and there was only one car ahead of the bus at the intersection (which is a designated stop for the 135 bus). Naturally, passengers on the bus had made their way to the exits and expected the doors to open. I was second in line at the front door and I was surprised the driver did not open the doors. The woman standing ahead of me turned to the driver and asked if we could get off. The driver did not answer her question or even acknowledge her presence. Then I leaned forward and said to the driver 'We're here', trying to gently remind him we’re at the stop, but he was busy writing something in a booklet or a grid of some sort he had resting on the steering wheel. Because the driver was fully in the bus stop and would not open the doors or acknowledge passenger requests to open the doors, I reached over and pulled the emergency door release so the doors would open. That finally got his attention. He finally said 'Hey, what are you doing? What are you doing?’ I responded, 'We're at a bus stop and I am getting off the bus'. I was uncomfortable doing this but we were fully stopped at a designated bus stop, the light was red and pedestrians and cross-traffic prohibited the driver from advancing the bus any further. Because the driver was at the stop, the other passengers and I expected to alight the bus and the driver did not acknowledge our justifiable request to open the doors to let us off, the driver was clearly detaining me against my will. If there was a reason for not opening the doors, his opportunity to divulge his reasoning came and went when he refused any attempt to acknowledge our presence or respond to our requests.

    My previous experience with this driver was a month or so ago when I boarded the northbound 135 around 5 pm at Franklin & Jackson. The trip was uneventful until he drove past the Belmont exit on northbound LSD. Although it was too late for the driver to exit at Belmont, the driver did not acknowledge or respond to passengers telling him route 135 is supposed to exit at Belmont. The driver, without acknowledging any of the passenger's concerns simply exited at Irving Park. Many passengers suggested to him to re-access southbound LSD so he could exit at Belmont and resume his route. Again, no response of any kind. Instead, he crossed Sheridan on Irving and when the passengers continued to complain, he just said "Get of my bus". Heated words were being exchanged between the driver and some passengers as I was alighting the bus through the rear doors. He could have re-accessed southbound LSD at Irving at the suggestion of many passengers. Again the requests were ignored and he crossed Sheridan making it very difficult to re-route.

    I suspect this driver might have a personality disorder in addition to his obvious attention deficit disorder.

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