CTA (Crazy Transit Anecdotes)

March 29, 2011 at 3:03 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , )


If you’ve read my blog long enough, you’re familiar with the fact that public transportation in Chicago provides for some interesting stories.  This week has been no different and, while it’s just Tuesday, I’ve had enough interesting for the week.

The first story took place on the train Sunday evening as I was making my way home from the megabus stop near Union Station.  The closest train stop for me wasn’t exactly the nicest one but I’ve been there plenty of times and don’t really think much of it.  I found a seat and hunkered down with my luggage, then settled in for the ride.  But the ride had to wait because an elderly man displayed pure badassary and single-handedly stopped a pickpocket.

Oh CTA, you so crazy

I didn’t really understand what was going on but I did see an older couple with a ton of luggage blocking the door to the train.  There was also a man who seemed to be being held by a few others and at first I thought he was drunk and trying to board.  Then he was pulled away by a few security guards and the couple fully boarded so the doors could close.  It was clear the older man was shaken and as he sat down and  began to speak to his (likely) wife I figured out what had actually happened.  He basically caught the pickpocket red-handed and held onto him for dear life while the security guards were brought in.  Standing in the door was the smartest thing he could do and the other passengers helped hold the would-be thief until he was apprehended.  I was happy for the man and impressed with his quick thinking – I also held my purse a bit tighter the whole way home.

The second story took place on the train coming into work yesterday morning.  I was sitting quietly with my eyes closed as I usually do on the ride into work, trying to mentally bend the space-time continuum so my train would arrive in the future after the work day was already finished.  I was having problems with this when I could sense the person sitting next to me squirming around a little more than normal.  Upon opening my eyes, I saw a woman who was obviously very uncomfortable.  Since I know what it’s like to be hungover nauseous on a moving train, my heart went out to her.  Then she put her head between her legs and made a retching noise so awful that I did a double take to see if she was harboring a small rabid animal in her purse.  Seriously.  She wasn’t.  When she came back to a sitting position the poor girl was obviously extremely surprised by her outburst and also very embarrassed, which probably got worse when a bunch of strangers started asking her if she was okay.  Perhaps she was pregnant and experience the first wonderful throes of morning sickness?  Maybe she was the host for an alien that was trying to burst from her stomach (hmm…similiar to pregnancy)?  Or maybe she had a ham and cheese breakfast sandwich that just wasn’t sitting right.  Regardless, when her stop came she was the first one off the train and I couldn’t exactly blame her.

Last but not least (holy crap this is turning into a marathon post), I overheard a couple of teenage girls on the bus this morning discussing their Driver’s Ed course.  Apparently they’re both terrified of lane merges and think that the recommended stop sign wait time is much too long.  This gave me yet another reason I’m glad I don’t have a car and it made me extremely thankful I’m no longer in high school as well.

Besides, if I drove everywhere then I wouldn’t be privy to these crazy transit anecdotes.

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