Tuesday, April 30, 2013


Dear stupid Provo pedestrian:

Given that you were crossing the street against a red light, and that there was a car coming toward you while you were illegally crossing, and that the driver of the car in question did not honk at you or swerve around you, but actually stopped to let you cross even though you were in the wrong, I am absolutely at a loss as to why, after she let you cross and drove away, you shouted

PUNK-A** B****

at her.  You should have been thanking her for not honking at you or trying to run you over or passive-aggressively swerving around you to make you pretend to fear for your life, as many drivers around these parts are wont to do when pedestrians blatantly cross illegally in front of them.

You are either out of touch with reality or have an excessively high external locus of control, which is kind of the same thing.  Either way, you should probably just stay home next time.

Monday, April 29, 2013


It goes both ways, guys.

  • While not all buses are on time, and it remains frustrating to no end when they are not on time, the bus in general is much, much better on time now than when I started riding in 2003.
  • I can't imagine that the same people who light up the sky with rage when a bus or train is late are on time to EVERYTHING . . . even I'm not on time for everything, though I must admit that "the bus was late" is a rock-solid excuse (unless the person you're talking to was checking a tracking app just after they got off the phone with you; don't be that person).
  • I still think UTA is a really good deal.  More on that soon.

Saturday, April 27, 2013


It seems like every time I'm gone for a week (whether to Mesa Verde or to the hospital) the colors of the bus header change.  Last time they went from blue to purple, and this time they went from purple to green.

I feel much better about green than I did about purple.  I feel like the green "pops" out at you in such a way as to make you think "Hey! A bus is coming!" much better than the purple did.  The purple was easy enough to see in the dark (say, on the 200 inbound at 6:11 a.m. all winter . . .), but it almost disappeared during a bright sunny day.  The green is pretty much always visible, except maybe on the '11 ski buses, where you can't really see anything ever.  Though I'm pretty sure I saw an '11 ski bus at Central the other day that was pretty easy to read.

You may wonder why I care so much about what color the writing on a front of a bus is.  But, believe me, if a significant portion of your comfort and happiness depended on being able to divine the presence of a bus coming down the road late at night, you'd want it to be a color that "pops," too.

Friday, April 26, 2013


So, today was BYU Graduation.  Remember how I graduated 4 months ago?

We went down to Provo on FrontRunner, because we love FrontRunner; and because we swore we would never drive on the freeway again if we could help it; and because even if we wanted to, we probably shouldn't drive on the freeway, because Tori's been a little sick to her stomach lately.

We love FrontRunner!
We took Baby.  We're pretty sure he likes trains.  The whole time we were on the train, the gentle rocking motions lulled him into a sweet, sweet slumber.  Every time the train stopped he would open his eyes and look around a little bit, but the rest of the time he just slept.

Here's to the first of many, many train rides with my son.  Most of them when he's a little older and better able to appreciate the experience.

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Dear stupid Provo pedestrian:

I suppose you think the world is your playground, though you're a couple of generations too old for that accusation to be stereotypically leveled at you.  Why else would you walk across 4th South, and across the tracks halfway down the platform at Trolley, not once, but three times, before you finally set your but down to wait for the train?

Just because there was no traffic on the street when you shot it a casual glance does not mean that there will never be traffic on that street.  Just because there was no train coming when you decided to walk across the tracks doesn't mean there will never be a train coming.  Cars turn right that you can't see out of the corner of your eye.  Trains sometimes come up without making much noise.  And then you get hit.


Please stop.


Wednesday, April 24, 2013


From time to time, people who are looking for date ideas in Provo will ask me where a good place to go peoplewatching on the bus is.  If we're in Provo, I usually tell them to take the 811, since I've often had good peoplewatching on my intercounty commutes, but if we're in Salt Lake, I might start recommending Millcreek TRAX Station.

Millcreek always seems to have the most interesting assortment of people, unlike Meadowbrook, which, while less than a mile to the south, only ever seems to contain people who look down at their feet and really wish the 39 would come.  (Notable exception here)

For example, on the same day when I rode the bus where old people don't sit by each other, I found myself in need of the 33.  As I was walking from the TRAX platform at Milcreek onto the bus platform, I heard a woman behind me start speaking in a projecting voice.

I don't know if you know this,

(she said)

but I used to be a reptile.


I got changed into human form three years ago.

(you've done remarkably well, considering)

I did it because I love you.

(thank you)

But I could change back into a reptile at any time.

(tell me more)

It sounded like she was talking on the phone with someone, or at least talking to someone, but I saw no evidence of either corporeal or digital conversation partners.  On the other hand, I did observe that her makeup was pale, almost white, with heavy eyeliner, which did give her sort of a reptilian air.  I guess you just never know.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Last week, while we were still at the hospital, commutergirl sent me on several errands, since she really didn't feel like getting it herself, not to mention the nurses probably wouldn't have allowed it.

So I left the hospital to catch a bus all over town to run errands.  What bus do you catch from University Hospital?  Why, the 21, of course!  Okay, not exactly in front of University Hospital.

That was actually a joke--I'm kind of sleep-deprived.

Anyway, the 21 that day was the bus where old people didn't sit by each other. First there was the couple that was waiting at the stop by the TRAX station with me.  They didn't really stand by each other at the stop either, though they did still somehow carry on a conversation--I thought he was talking to me when he started speaking, because he wasn't even looking at her.  When they got on the bus, they sat across from each other rather than next to each other, though they still kept talking.  Eventually, as the bus got more crowded (I was surprised at how many people were already on the bus by the time it got to the TRAX station; the 21 does get impressively crowded at times) they moved to sit by each other, but after lots of people got off, they separated again.

Then, another elderly couple got on and sat across from each other rather than next to each other and talked to each other from across the bus.  And then ANOTHER elderly couple got on and didn't sit next to each other, either.  It was at this point that I decided to write about the experience.  This last couple, however, never said a word to each other, so I now believe they were not, in fact, a couple.

But still, weird.  When commutergirl and I ride the bus at the same time, we generally sit next to each other.  It makes conversation easier.

Monday, April 22, 2013


So I've been meaning to post about the baby for a while, but anyone who has ever had a baby knows that when you have a baby you are much too busy with the baby to ever post about the baby.

(baby baby baby)

So here he is:

I never should have said that he would make a dramatic entrance.  He took me at my word.  It was a very long, rough week for mama and daddy, even if BABY was just fine during the whole thing.  But now we are all safe and well at home.  Though commutergirl won't be going on any big outings for a while.

Someday I will take Baby on lots of bus and train rides, but for now he just needs to stay home and eat and sleep a lot.  Mind you, he's getting pretty good at that.

Anyway, we're very excited to have Baby BUSNINJA with us, and we hope we will have lots of adventures (and by adventures, I mean GOOD adventures . . .) and many happy days to come.

Long live Baby!

Monday, April 15, 2013


(Still no baby)

Dear stupid Provo driver:

Back before I was stuck interminably in this hospital with no baby, you and I were merging onto the freeway at about the same time.  I say about the same time, because you were behind us in traffic.  As we were getting onto the freeway, you surely must have noticed an ambulance attending to a wreck under the bridge, that is, someone got in a crash and needed medical attention.  Surely you must have noticed this.  I am absolutely perplexed, then, that as we were getting on the freeway you proceeded to swerve three times to pass cars ON THE ON-RAMP.



Friday, April 12, 2013


We knew this was going to happen, but it's still a little surreal.

I'm sitting in the hospital right now, waiting for the nurse to bring me some Ambien.

Mmm, Ambien.

(Lifelong insomniac speaking)

We found out this week about some complications with the pregnancy; nothing serious, but the baby kind of needs to be out in the world now.  So here we are.  Nobody's too worried.

(Of course we're worried)

With any luck, my child will be born on the day the Airport Line opens.  Do me proud, kid.

I have several blog posts rolling around in my head; stupid drivers and pedestrians continue to abound all around me, for example.  I may or may not get around to posting them in the near future.  We'll be otherwise occupied in the very near future.

For now, it's time to sleep.

Mmm, sleep.

(Sleep will be at a premium in the weeks and months to come)

See you on the other side.

Monday, April 8, 2013


I think this may be becoming a recurring thing . . .

This one was not bitter enough to incite too much snarkiness within me, but . . . I just couldn't resist . . . you'll see what I mean.

  • You mean, besides the 2, 3, 6, 21, 33, 35, 35M, 39, 41, 45, 47, 54, 62, 72, 200, 201, 205, 209, 213, 217, 218, 220, 227, 240, 470, 509, 516, 517, 519, 525, 550, 603, 604, 612, 625, 630, 640, 645, 667, 670, 675, 811, 821, 830, 831, 832, 833, 834, 836, 850, 862, 880, 901, 902, 951, 952, 954, 960, 962, 990, and 992, not to mention TRAX and FrontRunner?  You're right.  There's no bus service on weekends!

Saturday, April 6, 2013


In honor of it being Conference time, here's a story about a different Conference time when things didn't go as planned, but it was okay anyway.

This was a few Conference times ago, when I lived in Provo and was yet unmarried. My traditional practice was to catch the bus to my parents' house in between the Saturday Afternoon and Priesthood sessions, then spend the rest of the weekend at home and get a ride back, due to a shocking lack of the 822 on Sundays. This plan worked well when the 822 ran more-or-less hourly on Saturdays:

822 SB (BYU Wilkinson Center)

I would catch the 5:00 bus, get home in time to watch the Priesthood session, and spend a placid evening and next day in the company of mine. Of course, I had to spend a decent portion of the 4:00 hour getting myself to BYU, but it was a short walk, and there were several buses, if I timed it right (you always have to time it right on a Saturday).

Then, the 822 was reduced on Saturdays, so the schedule looked like this:

822 SB (BYU Wilkinson Center)

This created a conundrum. I am a stickler about catching all of Conference, even listening on an iPod at work when I had to work on Saturdays. But the new schedule made it difficult: I would have to catch the 4:00 bus to make it home in time for the Priesthood Session, but I didn't want to spend the 3:00 hour missing conference while trying to get to BYU. The problem was confounded by the 831 schedule, which had concurrently been reduced to 90-minute frequency:

831 SB (500 North University Avenue)

If I wanted to be a stickler about taking the bus, and if I wanted to be a stickler about catching all of Conference (yes; yes), there was only one way to do it. I was pretty pleased with myself for figuring it out.

It was a perfect plan, with one complication: other humans.

(A complication shared with so many of my plans)

We were watching the first session of Conference at my apartment; it so happened that at the same time, one of my roommates was making crepes. When he was done making crepes, he paused the TV right in the middle of Elder Scott's talk and, when we looked up in shock, said, "Guys, we're TiVo-ing it. Now come get some crepes.!"

The crepes were quite excellent. But our crepe interlude lasted for about 45 minutes, and I began to worry that I wouldn't make my 831. I did, but I had to shower more quickly than I had been expecting.

The Saturday ride on the 831 from 500 North University Avenue to BYU was 5 minutes. It is rather remarkable, therefore, that during this specific 5 minutes I should happen to get a call from an old mission buddy, who was going to a Chinese buffet and wanted to know if I wanted to come along. I have never, as far as I can remember, turned down free food. So it was that, as the 831 was pulling into BYU, my friend was waiting in his car to take me to . . . 300 North University Avenue. Oh, well.

As I walked back to my apartment after the second free meal of the day, I realized that my plans had been thrown off again: I was in no position to catch the 822 at BYU, and the Saturday afternoon session was about to begin.

I had already told my roommates that I was leaving for the day, and, not wanting to confuse them more than I already did with my odd ways, I decided not to return to my apartment. Instead, I peeked into the apartment two doors down, where several people living and not living at the apartment had gathered, to see if I could join them. They acquiesced (always throws me off when they do that), and I spent a pleasant first hour-or-so of the Afternoon session in their company.

But then it came time to catch the bus again. I had to tear myself away and head out to the bus stop. Fortunately, the drivers had rotated in the meantime, so I avoided the awkward experience of having the driver stare at me for getting on twice in the same place without making a return trip in between (it's happened before).

I spent another 5 minutes on the 831, following which I watched the rest of the Afternoon session in the Traditions Lounge in the Wilkinson Center (my original location of choice). During the closing hymn, I tore myself away again (like I said, stickler) and walked out and onto the 822 that had already been sitting there for several minutes. the rest of the weekend went as planned. I think I probably missed about one talk. I've had worse.

I was sitting here thinking about past conferences (including the one where commutergirl and I had an argument that led to our getting engaged; ask me sometime), and this story came to mind. It was from a time in my life where I didn't have very many people to turn to.  It's nice to have friends.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


You knew this was coming (you had to know this was coming).

Too many people have told me about this video for me to not watch it.  Or post it.  It's from the LDS General Young Women's session held last Saturday (I wasn't there, but I heard it was smashing).

I admit that I'm still a little shaky on the particulars of her journey, but I fully realize that's not the point of this video, which is otherwise quite lovely.  The point is, she took TRAX.  To the temple.  That is the point.

Hopefully this video inspires LDS young women all over the world, especially in those parts of the world where the majority of young women get to the temple on transit.  And it should also send a message to certain parts of the Wasatch Front that taking transit is not, in fact, a sin.

Go to the temple!  Take TRAX!