A pair of recent articles examine what it’s like to use public transit every day, year after year. One examines the mechanics of on-time delivery and service—the other, the unwritten rules of ridership.
The first article, by Matt Johnson, represents a near-Herculean effort to compile a database of the author’s experiences on the Washinton D.C. Metro—the trains, their timeliness, and other anecdotal information.
“In 2013, I took 866 rides and experienced 15 delays, which means that 1.73% of my rides were delayed. In 2014, so far, I've taken 134 rides and experienced 11 delays, which means that 8.21% of my rides were delayed. That's a significant increase.”
The second article, by Nicolei Gupit, describes insights gleaned from riding the Metro bus system in Los Angeles since 1998.
“I learned by heart the cadence of passing streets as I rode the buses plying Vermont: Sunset, Fountain, Santa Monica, Melrose, Beverly, First, Third, Sixth, Wilshire. I created my own map of L.A. by surveying who got on and off the bus at which stops. While I heard mostly Spanish and Armenian spoken around East Hollywood, I would hear mostly Korean, Chinese, or Tagalog when passing neighboring areas heading south and west from home.”
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