Tag Archives: METRO

The 04/10/13 Joy Jar

9 Apr

Moi is a ‘bus chick’ and rides public transpotation ALL OVER Seattle. She writes and watches people. The buses in the Puget Sound region are run by a variety of agencies and that may be the problem. Moi mostly rides METRO which gets her there. The gridlock which stymies Congress also stymies Washington government. Many folk who take the bus may see their service cut because of the way public transportation is financed in Washington. Many will consider buying some gas guzzling clunker and further crowd the road. The powers that be don’t undertand the value of a really good public transportation system. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is a public transportation system.


You can’t understand a city without using its public transportation system.”

Erol Ozan


Public transit situates us so that we are given license to accept what’s right in front of us, but will likely arouse our desire to compare our narrative to someone else’s, to give ourselves permission to speculate upon a person’s private space, or life, with no fear of recourse or punishment.”

Julie Wilson, Seen Reading

The person whose problems are all behind them is probably a school bus driver”


A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it”


In the dime stores and bus stations, People talk of situations, read books, repeat quotations, Draw conclusions on the wall”

Bob Dylan

Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.”

Oprah Winfrey

The 03/02/13 Joy Jar

1 Mar

The #347 bus winds through the northern burbs of Seattle. It is a local bus and makes so many stops, one almost thinks that the driver would start delivering the mail. It goes to the strip mall culuster of Mountlake Terrace and then returns to America’s first mall, Northgate. Moi was taking the #347 back to Northgate. She was struck by the extrordinary kindness of the driver. People who ride buses are often elderly, poor, carless, environmentalists, frugal, and/or observers of the human condition. Obviously, the driver had a familiarity with his charges. He greeted each warmly. There were two passengers with walkers. Both who stubbornly insisted on slowly getting on the bus with their own power. No lift, thank you. The driver waited and commented that one lady brought her shoping bag and he hoped she found some bargins. He welcomed the man with the walker and his wife hoping that had a good afternoom. There were the people with the the multiples of little children and the young people who are sullen as so many young people are. Each was given their measure of greeting and cheer. Life is not about being exalted, often those who are happiest are those who can find things to exalt in others. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is kindness given to strangers.

For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.
Audrey Hepburn

I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet, strange, I am ungrateful to those teachers.
Khalil Gibran

Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.
Og Mandino

Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.
Lao Tzu

A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.
William Arthur Ward

It has always seemed strange to me… the things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second.
John Steinbeck

You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

To practice five things under all circumstances constitutes perfect virtue; these five are gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness.

Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.
Mark Twain

The 02/25/13 Joy Jar

24 Feb

Moi’s field trip would start in downtown Seattle and culminate in Renton at the closest Walmart. The purpose was just to hang out and see how working Americans were dealing with the new normal. Moi went to the METRO Trip planner and typed in the address, 743 Rainier Avenue South. The snarky computer program asked Renton or Seattle? Since moi rarely gets out of Seattle, she typed Seattle. Later, moi would find out the correct answer was Renton. As directed, moi got on the #7 bus and began an excursion through south Seattle. The trip takes one through the International District, Columbia City, and Hillman. This is where one encounters the diversity in Seattle. Moi didn’t see anything which looked like Walmart, so she asked the other passengers about how to get there. That started a group think session and the peeps thought moi should get off the bus and take the #106. Moi got the #106 and was headed toward Renton through Skyline. Moi asked the bus driver if he stopped by Walmart. He thought the best bus strategy was to go to the Renton Transit Center and take the #140 bus. Moi got to the Renton Transit Center and asked the #140 bus driver if he went to Walmart and he wasn’t sure. By this time, it was getting dark and moi walked around the Renton Transit Center and discovered a lot of busses don’t run on the weekends. The bus riding folks at the Transit Center are carless, either by choice or circumstance. If one leaves the Seattle core, one’s circumstance is tied to one’s ability to get around. Moi did not make it to Walmart, this trip. She will start out earlier in the day and find a way to get there on the bus. That tells one about just one of the challenges faced by those who work for a living and get so little recognition for what they do. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the knowledge gained from field trips in one’s neighborhood.

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.”                             

Mark Twain

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”                  

St. Augustine

There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.”                           Robert Louise Stevenson

I don’t do like diva trips and stuff.
Shirley MacLaine

People get really caught up in their own trips.
Max Cannon

One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.”               

Henry Miller

A cautionary tale: Riding the 71 bus and the death of Whitney Houston

11 Feb

This is a portion of the Seattle Times article, Whitney Houston, superstar of records, films, dies:

Houston’s publicist, Kristen Foster, said the cause of death was unknown.

Rosen said police received a 911 call from hotel security about Houston at 3:43 p.m. Saturday. Paramedics who were already at the hotel because of a Grammy party unsuccessfully tried to resuscitate the singer, he said.

Houston’s end came on the eve of music’s biggest night – the Grammy Awards. It’s a showcase where she once reigned, and her death was sure to cast a heavy pall on Sunday’s ceremony…

At her peak, Houston was the golden girl of the music industry. From the middle 1980s to the late 1990s, she was one of the world’s best-selling artists. She wowed audiences with effortless, powerful, and peerless vocals that were rooted in the black church but made palatable to the masses with a pop sheen….

But by the end of her career, Houston became a stunning cautionary tale of the toll of drug use. Her album sales plummeted and the hits stopped coming; her once serene image was shattered by a wild demeanor and bizarre public appearances. She confessed to abusing cocaine, marijuana and pills, and her once pristine voice became raspy and hoarse, unable to hit the high notes as she had during her prime.

“The biggest devil is me. I’m either my best friend or my worst enemy,” Houston told ABC’s Diane Sawyer in an infamous 2002 interview with then-husband Brown by her side.

It was a tragic fall for a superstar who was one of the top-selling artists in pop music history, with more than 55 million records sold in the United States alone.

She seemed to be born into greatness. She was the daughter of gospel singer Cissy Houston, the cousin of 1960s pop diva Dionne Warwick and the goddaughter of Aretha Franklin....http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/entertainment/2017485885_apusobitwhitneyhouston.html

The 71 bus was crowded, it usually is. The run is from downtown to the university district. I don’t know how many thousands attend the University of Washington, but they all seem to be riding the bus at the same time. It promised to be an uneventful trip from city center to the “district.”

I was at the end of a seat because my seatmate took over half the bench seat. But, I was happy to be sitting down and not be a strap hanger. I just wanted to close my eyes and think about nothing in particular. The gangly, black guy across from me, said “hey, did you know that Whitney Houston died?” I said that that was the first I had heard about her death. Then I asked, drugs? He said “yeh, probably, but nobody said nothing about it.” I said I wondered what causes people to start with drugs. He began to tell me his story.

At this point, I didn’t know his name or even why he began talking to me. He said that he had taken just about every drug imaginable and had even come back from the dead a couple of times. He once had a wife, children, and other family. He had made a lot of money in the fishing industry in Alaska in the 70’s. Proudly he told me about managing a team of over 75 and being respected for that. “That was something for a black man in the 70’s.” he said he made over $1400 per week back then. What happened, I said. “We were young, reckless, and we wanted to try everything because we thought nothing could touch us.” Eventually he was using heavily and began dealing to support his habit. Other members of his family including his wife were using as well.

He asked me if I worked for METRO, the local bus company. No, I said, I’m a writer. Why did you think I worked for METRO? “Because your jacket has the METRO colors.” I’m guessing he probably likes hitting on bus drivers. The conversation continued. How do you get out of the drug life, I asked. “You die, you relapse, you struggle.” He talked about his struggles. The fact that the AA he liked to attend because it was a small group folded and how hard it was for him to go to a bigger group of thirty or so. Why, I asked. “Because out of thirty folks, about ten of them will relapse and that is discouraging.” He is currently on methadone and his tests have been coming up clean. Now, “I just want to tell the truth, I just want a real life.”

His bus stop approached. I asked him if I could have his first name and whether it would be OK if I wrote about his story. “My name is Ron and I just might read your blog.”

I’m guessing, Ms. Houston never made it to the point where she just wanted to tell the truth.

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©