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“No eating, smoking or littering”

September 27, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Update: One person I asked to stop eating pointed out a very valid exception to this rule:  Managing blood sugar.  By all means, if you have a *valid* medical reason to eat something, please do.  It’s better for you to spill a few crumbs than to pass out on my bus if you are a diabetic and took too much insulin.  The key here is “valid medical reason” – don’t use a marginal or non-existent medical excuse to justify scarfing down a muffin, Ok? (Last I heard, an apple with peanut butter is a better blood sugar regulator than a muffin, although I’m hardly an expert.)

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There seems to be some confusion out there about Metro’s code of conduct so let me just clear it up for everybody.  From Metro’s code of conduct:

No eating, smoking or littering

Trust me, no matter how careful you are: crumbs, nuts, shells, grease, chicken bones, ramen noodles, orange Cheeto dust, chocolate, Doritos fragments, half-eaten Thai dinners, granola bar debris, unknown sticky substances or any other imaginable food residue can easily escape your clutches and make it into and onto the seats as well as the floor.  It’s a moving vehicle with people shuffling about, after all.

I’ve seen it all and picked it all up.  I’ve also heard “I’ll be careful not to spill” countless times, only to go back during my coach check to find some gross surprise waiting for me.  So forgive me if I’m a bit militant about reminding folks of the “No eating” rule.  I periodically try to “lighten up” and let it slide, as I did this morning.  Of course, then I find muffin crumbs, a crumpled up bag, and used napkins on the seat.

For what it’s worth, I get snarky about this stuff because I ride the bus a lot too and would prefer to sit in seats not covered with food residue.

So, could you hold onto your food until you’re off the bus?  This bus driver, also a fellow passenger, thanks you.

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  1. Norm Woods
    September 27, 2011 at 2:21 pm | #1

    I thing eating on the bus is one of the most rude, selfish, and arrogant things you can do. And it’s so simple –
    - either eat somewhere first and take the next bus
    - or, take this bus and grab a bite at your destination

    The average ride is what, 20 minutes? Do you REALLY have to eat RIGHT NOW? Is your schedule really that out of control and your body really that demanding that it has to have that food at exactly this moment?

    You’re generally able to sit on the bus without peeing your pants. Can’t you sit on the bus without stuffing your face?

  2. Louis
    September 28, 2011 at 11:38 am | #2

    I was riding on route 39 over Labor Day weekend, when a woman got on the bus and proceeded to mow down on a Chipotle burrito. A burrito. Rice, beans, meat, sauces, all precariously wrapped in tin foil. It’s an instant mess no matter where you eat it.

    She rode from 3rd and Pike to Busway and Royal Brougham (maybe 10-12 minutes) and left the bag, tin foil, rice and bean droppings and sauce drippings all over the seats. I really wanted to say something to her, but I try to make a point to stay out of people’s business.

    That aside, the words “Cheeto dust” really creep me out.

    • October 1, 2011 at 9:51 am | #3

      Louis, I encourage my passengers to say something or that will continue to happen. It sounds like it was a pretty ugly mess.

  3. September 28, 2011 at 1:49 pm | #4

    I’d be curious if you placed observers on a bus how many instances of folks eating would be seen, but not result in a mess?

    When I worked in tech support with DSL a customer asked me, “Do people call often with down DSL?” To which I responded, “Well, they don’t call me when its working just fine.” There probably are a good number of folks who manage eating without making a mess, likely more than those who make a mess. Its just those few who really really make a mess.

    Oh, and if we were serious we’d kick out everything but black coffee, water, and unsweetened tea for drinking on the bus. Because that sticky mess from the spill from your peppermint mocha is more annoying that those few crumbs…

  4. Lloyd
    September 29, 2011 at 8:39 pm | #5

    It pains me to write this, but I more tolerant of fare evaders than I am eaters. Ghastly, awful and rude eating and littering habits have NO place on the bus/train. As Norm above states – we don’t pee (or smoke) on the bus, so let’s knock off the eating and littering.

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