I'd like to file a complaint please.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Over the past year or so, I've commented many times on my various experiences involving the Edmonton transit system. Most of it has not been pleasant, some of it downright disgusting, but generally never life threatening. Well, dear reader, that has changed. It seems that I should increase my life insurance because I am now taking my life in my hands each time I step onto one of their buses.

The usual driver, Barry (I think?), of the second bus I catch in the morning was recently switched to another route. This alone gives me cause to complain. I had finally got him perfectly trained. If I wasn't at the stop when he came by in the morning, he would wait a few minutes as he knew my first bus was sometimes late. He never asked me for a bus pass. And he was always cheery, pleasant and joked with the passengers. Although no one said anything, I'm sure everyone was very sad to see him go.

Enter the new driver. He's crazy. Seriously crazy. Part of the commute is downhill around a corner right before my office building. It's not a sharp corner nor is the bus usually going very fast. Well, at least that was how it was with Barry. On Monday, we took the corner with the new bus driver at breakneck speed. Part way through the curve, there was a giant scraping of metal on concrete (he hit the curb) and I was positive I saw sparks. There was no slowing down. Perhaps he thought there was a bomb on the bus and if he slowed down it would explode. Or he's insane. I'm not sure which. My coworker and I chalked it up to all the snow we've received over the past few weeks and the which the plows have piled on the sides of the roads. Perhaps he misjudged the turn and he accidentally hit the curb. Everything would be fine the next day.

Flash forward to this morning. We boarded the bus, said hello to the crazy man...I mean the very nice driver...and took our seats. Chatting away about vacations, knitting, hot thai-chi instructors, and various other subjects, we paid little attention to what the driver was doing. He could have flown through a red light (as he's done on a few occasions) or nearly hit other vehicles, we were oblivious. The bus started to make it's way down the hill, as my coworker talked about how she dreamed she had fallen on top of her thai-chi instructor and was about to share the rest of the juicy details when it happened. Again. Only worse. Have you ever seen a movie where the crush a car in one of those giant flattening thingies? That was the sound that roared from the bottom of the bus right where we were sitting. A giant flash of sparks lit up the dark morning sky like fireworks. This time I was not the only one to see it. People sitting across from us made various "oooh" and "whooooa" noises as my coworkers coffee spilled all over her.

Did the driver slow down this time? What do you think? He slammed on the breaks as he reached our stop, causing us to ricochet around the interior of the bus. As we hobbled to the door we asked if he was ok. "Oh sure!" he replied. "It's becoming a regular, everyday occurrence now." I think I might be requesting that ETS start including air bags and crash helmets with the purchase of a bus pass each month.

On a knitting note, I figured out the problem with the pirate mittens. Seems the very "helpful" sales lady sold me the wrong weight yarn. Arrrghh. I'm trying it again (for the last time) with a cheap acrylic yarn I had in a junk drawer. Guess what? It's looking perfect. No skulls though, I didn't want to waste my time just in case it didn't work. I'm cheesed.


Alun said...

Keanu is your driver? Bodacious!

Tanya said...

:-( @ mittens. sorry.

Karen said...


Anonymous said...

how was todays bus ride?..just as fun?

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