Multi-Tiered Epic FAIL on MUNI Today – Or Why a MUNI Blog Writes Itself.

People wonder sometimes how a blog about SF life and MUNI can have enough material to sustain itself. Today I had a lovely commute FAIL that reminded me a) why this thing just writes itself and b) primary source complaining online has a therapeutic value.
I had to get to a meeting over in Pac Heights and planned accordingly, giving myself enough time to do what should have been a fairly easy jump. However, MUNI had other plans, starting with the fact that I found myself more or less stranded in the Inner Sunset in the middle of the day. WTF? Usually mid-day is the most reliable time one can catch an N (which was supposed to be there at 1pm) and instead I had NextMUNI telling me that one wasn’t due for at least 30-40 minutes. D’oh!
So, being the MUNI nerd that I am, I quickly looked at my options, none of ’em good: a) take a cab and spend $4000000 on cab fare to Pac Heights b) take the 43, then take another connection to where I was going or c) take the janky 6 to downtown, then either hail a cab (!) or get on the 47.
I chose “c,” even though it wasn’t necessarily the best choice, but it was the only one I could bet on reliably. However, the 6 Parnassus can also be reliably in disrepair as well. I got on and was regaled with the wit and wisdom of the woman whom I shall call “Troll Lady” as she was rather unkempt, had a voice that sounded like 10 miles of bad road, and was talking VERY loudly to someone about things I just don’t need to know about anyone, much less Troll Lady. And of course, we hit every single red light too. O hai!

It gets better. As we’re getting towards market and I’m starting to realize hey this isn’t that bad, and I might just make it, we hit another MUNI FAIL: Another 6 trolleybus was off the rails, so to speak, and they couldn’t get it back on the trolley lines. So they had to push the bus. At this point I called my colleagues and let ’em know there was no way I could make it on time but was hopeful I’d only be a few minutes late.
After several people pushed the bus out of the way, I got off and made the Big Mistake of Trusting MUNI, and got on a 49 bus, which had 82000 people on it, and seemed to take on 100 strollers, 300 old people, and whatnot at each stop (and got all the reds). Realizing this was futile, I decided to do what I hate doing most in this town – try and hail a cab.
I find it amazing that we have the most expensive cab rates in the nation, and yet when you want one, there aren’t enough of ’em on the street, as the medallions are kept in short supply. Bogus. However, after waiving my arms like a fool at enough cabs, I got an Awesome Cab Driver, who got me to where I needed and I was only a few minutes late. Woo hoo?
We got to my destination and I chose to pay with a card but after several tries, the machine died. You’re kidding me, I thought. So I patiently waited for the carbon. Who knew getting to Pac Heights was more difficult than getting into North Korea?
I got there only a few minutes late, so that was good. The meeting went well, and I was treated to some amazing views of Our Fair City. And the weather was so nice, on the ride home courtesy of a colleague, I took in the sights of the nice part of town. Now I’m having a soda and figuring out where I can work without going home – it’s so nice out I just don’t wanna be at home!
And in reviewing the blogs, Britney at KPIX posted a link to photoblogger Jameth’s site with more Epic MUNI FAIL. And, reports from the Twitteratti also indicate that we had awesome weather today, but massive amounts of MUNI mayhem.
See? This thing just writes itself sometimes!

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3 Responses to Multi-Tiered Epic FAIL on MUNI Today – Or Why a MUNI Blog Writes Itself.

  1. Kathleen says:

    Ugh, what a mess. I hate when I come up with like five different potential bus options, none being direct mind you, to get to where I need to go and NONE OF THEM end up working out. Like, really MUNI? I guess walking ends up being the biggest fail. That’s what I usually do most of them time when I can’t catch the bus or find a cab. And also, seriously, the one time every few months I begrudgingly take a cab the machine NEVER works. Lame.

  2. tangobaby says:

    Oh no! No wonder you’re drinking every Thursday.
    I seriously don’t get the credit card/cab thing, though. (The Troll Lady makes more sense.) In Paris, not only could I use a credit card, but the cabs were clean, had GPS and were not trashed inside, and one charming cab driver even proposed marriage to me.

  3. Greg Dewar says:

    @Tangobaby: haha, either thursdays at the bar or most mornings having a big dose of coffee…I am lucky this year in that I don’t have the super long commute from the Sunset to downtown, to BART, to way way out in the east bay, ending with a long long walk to the office by 730am every day (working for that client was fun, but that commute sucked!)
    Usually I can schedule a sales call or whatever so that I can avoid most MUNI nonsense in the AM, but this was just amazingly bizarre, seeing all those N’s stacked at Ocean beach in the middle of the day. sigh.

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