Car totalled after GPS system directed the driver onto a train track http://t.co/dBFz6Nre92 pic.twitter.com/QtVKaRXv1B— Mashable (@mashable) October 1, 2015
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Bad day at GO Transit? First the sign in fail for the service guarantee and now the hamster is drunk
Monday, September 28, 2015
My sister's dog had a litter of seven puppies. We went to visit them this weekend in London. Thankfully they were all spoken for because my daughter was ready to kidnap this guy - the runt of the litter.
Thursday, September 24, 2015
|to:||"Cindy (Cj) Smith" |
|date:||Wed, Sep 23, 2015 at 6:33 PM|
Making the transfer today in Oakville - city of German Imported Cars and Super Inflated Entitlement.
Let the pics tell some of the story:
Smoakville 1 - A nicely composed shot - note the young smoking couple under the two conveniently placed no smoking signs. Nothing new here, really. Approached to a safe distance (not easy since they were upwind) and asked if the signs meant something different to them.
They had the good grace to leave right away - though snickering.
Smoakville 2 As they passed I noticed the other two - Mr. Big Boy Pants, and a guy who looks like he still thinks he could land a spot with the 1990's Bare Naked Ladies.
I ask them to please comply with the GO no smoking policy. Mr. Bare Naked Manque responds that the law says that he has to be more than 15 feet away from the doors. This is wrong.
He's on GO property, and if it were adequately explained by the signage (it isn't - and why is that?) he'd know (or have no way of denying) that he has no right to smoke on GO property.
He's also closer than 15 feet to the entrance, but hey, he can only be so wrong before he's over 100% wrong - am I right?
Smoakville 3: So I'm snapping pics and his little friend (they're in Blue Jays matching outfits! SQUEE!), Mr. Big Boy Pants, offers to break my "fucking camera". So I turn on the video feature and ask him to approach and repeat. Strangely enough, he demurs.
As my local bus is leaving I note that several more smokers have taken up the perch between the no-smoking signs and the PRESTO machine.
For the 1,250th time - howzabout a sign that clearly explains that there is no smoking on GO property and what that means in terms of geography and possible penalties?
When they're smoking right under your signs as they are now, and right by the PRESTO machine, I 'd say its safe to conclude that the GO safety and comfort of passengers commitment beyond being a travesty and is in the neighbourhood of being a willful lie.
Addendum: GO YANKEES!
So how's the Burlington GO Station coming along? (Oshawa peeps take note and be prepared for long years ahead)
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Yes. Transit Safety
Officers’ responsibilities will not change in that regard.
REALLY?! People have asked this?
Short and quiet
conversations are fine within the Quiet Zone; however, the train’s lower level
is available for longer conversations and important phone calls.
We ask our passengers
to consider their fellow riders while in the Quiet Zone.
It's good I don't
work for GO because my answer would read: take your phone, find a lighter, now
set it on fire.
Passengers in the Quiet Zone are encouraged to abide by the Quiet Zone
- you are a 10 years+ GO Transit passenger (over 20 years would be ideal, but let's not get too picky)*
- you are not camera shy
- you are part of a GO gang (and you've held parties on the train - nice to have, but not a requirement)
- you commute for more than an hour and half one way by train
This people need to learn how to make use of:
- the space near the doors
- aisle seats
- bench seats
- their brains
In a nutshell:
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
I've been a bad blogger in that regard.
GO's president admits train service took a nose dive and it's blamed on aging signal equipment. Lots of slapping on the back about UP Express and high fives about Pan Am Games service.
What I found interesting was this commitment in the chart on the very last page, "We will strive to have seats available for every passenger on 80% of weekday rush hour train trips."
Right now, GO has only met this 66% of the way.
It was 62% two years ago.
On the LSE, in the past five years, ridership volume never appears to change, at least to me. So I have to ask, what was it like 10 years ago? 15 years ago? Share your experiences in the comments.
A video posted by Christopher Swimmings (@christopherswimmings) on
A photo posted by Chelsea - Toronto (@cityfoodmonkey) on
A photo posted by kvsmith (@steelmagnolias) on
I warned PRESTO of a problem back in February and it was ignored. Well guess what folks? Revenue Canada isn't accepting Transit Usage Reports as is
@ThisCrazyTrain No, we don't use names. The card number is considered a unique identifier and meets the CRA’s requirements.— PRESTO card (@PRESTOcard) February 18, 2015
Monday, September 21, 2015
Pilot Coffee is upstairs in the VIA Great Hall. I walked by it this morning. Never head of them but I'll give them a try tomorrow. I thought it was another Folgers promotion.
Tim's Café is just inside the west entrance off Front St, as you head towards the York Concourse through Union Station. I won't touch the stuff. Kudos to those who love it, though.
More coffee @ #unionstation: Pilot Coffee (Great Hall), Tim's (York Concourse North end) h/t @UnionStnHelp #gotransit pic.twitter.com/8YYQguUfNM— Katia Osokine (@KatiaOsokine) September 21, 2015
Thursday, September 17, 2015
The last environmental study was done in 2010. When it was released, it had a lot of people excited (including me as the Courtice Station would be three kilometres south of my house).
I do know that many factors impact expansion of a corridor and one of them is who owns the actual track. The Lakeshore East expansion would put GO trains on a CP rail line (CPR). This means Metrolinx has to lease the tracks from CPR, build track, or work out a strategic partnership. This is just what I've gleaned from proposals I've read, comments that have been written over the years, and responses I've received to questions posed to various individuals in email.
It's also my understanding that CPR and Metrolinx don't have a great friendship - merely a rumor on the rail fanatics message boards but one that never seems to lose steam. According to GO's 2020 Strategic plan, the best method for expansion is to "own" the rail line. But as it stands, when GO has to "borrow" rail time, passengers get bumped because freight is king. Ask anyone who rides the Richmond Hill train and how many times they've been delayed due to freight traffic.
The report reads, "Both railways’ (CN and CPR) primary business is freight operations, with GO Transit remaining a minor and peripheral part of their operation and interest. GO’s operating arrangements with the railways must reflect the specific performance required for quality passenger services.
GO’s plans for increased service and additional routes, delivered with quality and consistency, require ownership of the rail corridors. As these corridors become surplus to the freight operation, or where freight traffic is active but not dominant, GO Transit will continue to purchase them and develop the tracks to support passenger services."
As I mentioned, I live three kilometres away from the CPR corridor. I can tell you that it's a busy line. Freight trains run at least one an hour during the day and even more so at night. I can't see this line becoming a "surplus" anytime soon, and one that can be handed over to GO Transit with no impact on freight service, so I highly doubt us Clarington residents will have GO train service by 2020.
On Twitter, people whine about GO Transit expansion ALL THE TIME, especially in the Niagara region. Provincial (and some federal) politicians love to campaign each election year on a platform that they will be the one who will bring commuter trains to their constituents, but they never explain how they will do this and why they failed to do so. Unless that MPP is going to build you some track, there isn't much they can do if a provincial agency is being held hostage by privately-held, but publicly traded rail companies who make $3 billion a year (for CN). According to its 2014 Annual Report, CPR raked in $6.2 billion.
I'm not saying Niagara and Clarington won't get GO trains. Barrie eventually got one, so it can happen, but it all comes down to one thing - money. And unless the current Liberal government can start building rail corridors, we will always be second fiddle to freight.
Here's the link for those who have Twitter blocked at work and if you have Buzz Feed blocked, too, then you're gonna need your phone.26 frustrations all #GoTransit riders know to be true: http://t.co/yH5SDUzsH6 via @BuzzFeedCanada pic.twitter.com/4fn85JzNpW— Kat Angus (@katangus) September 16, 2015
Wednesday, September 16, 2015
The incident affected passengers travelling on the 6:50 pm Georgetown (Kitchener) train which ended its trip at Bramalea GO Station. Passengers who were on the train involved in the fatality were left to wait for over two hours on-board while GO Transit arranged for buses.
The victim's name was not released.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015
A photo posted by @badabing.badaraco on
BREAKING | #GObus driver loses control and crashes into platform at #UnionStation. Picture courtesy of @trig72 pic.twitter.com/e5CVQvFMc2— AM640 (@am640) September 14, 2015
According to Anne Marie Aikins, a spokesperson for Metrolinx, she told the Toronto Star the driver of the GO bus lost control, “took out a pillar” and the door of another bus before lodging itself under the station yesterday afternoon. Bus service was suspended and resumed shortly after 7 pm. The driver was taken to hospital for a medical evaluation. Thankfully, no GO Transit customers were injured in this collision.It will be very interesting to see how the get this thing out of there. @GOtransit #gobus #toronto #unionstation pic.twitter.com/dJu3f0PLuo— patrick. // (@imPatrickT) September 14, 2015
Monday, September 14, 2015
It occurred to me just the other day how people appear to be getting more and more comfortable with putting their feet up on the seats, and not just with shoes on. This summer, more than others past, I’ve noticed people feel more than happy to just take off their shoes and get incredibly comfortable, regardless if someone is next to their feet or not. It’s not exclusive to age, or gender, or size. I’ve seen such things as an old bloke with his gross socks on the seat next to some poor woman, to people without anything covering their feet at all.
As I said, I am noticing this more and more, so what has happened to make people think that
1) this is a good idea and
2) that it is completely acceptable and no one around will mind? …Well we do f*cking mind!
We might not say it, because quite frankly I am concerned about someone’s mental state when they deem it okay to conduct this revolting act. The way I see it is if I were to go up to someone, and in my most proper, thick British accent, one of two things could happen:
1) they get so incredibly embarrassed that I actually end up feeling uncomfortable and feel bad for causing a fuss and making someone feel that way
2) they get really pissed off and stab me in the neck with their keys.
Both of these are a distinct possibility and neither which I care to experience. Instead, I sit in silence, occasionally giving them a look and hoping they can feel someone staring daggers at them, enough to think “Shit! What am I doing?! I am scum to be putting my feet up on here. Hang on…did someone put a turd on this seat already?!” Yes, that’s the other possibility! What if someone who kept their shoes on, had stood in poop? Or even more likely, if it had been a chap, there is probably piss on the sole of their feet because there are quite a lot of men out there who somehow leave a puddle of the stuff on the floor when they go.
I don’t get it, science can't explain it, these people are idiots. Nevertheless they walk amongst us and some of them put their feet on the seats. Only for someone else without their shoes or socks on to rub their disgusting, mangy feet in the now piss-covered seat.
Does this seem like someone you would want to confront?
Friday, September 11, 2015
How a fight about feet on the seats became a viral sensation (but not for the reason you might think)
Full background story (definitely worth the click)
Syrian refugees arriving by train in Germany - let's pause and enjoy this humanitarian effort and gesture
KEIN TAG WIE JEDER ANDERE!!!Unsere Reporter waren heute bei der Ankunft der 1500 #Flüchtlinge am #Dortmunder Hauptbahnhof. Was sich dort abgespielt hat, war Gänsehaut pur. Das passiert wenn Menschen auf Menschen treffen. Wir lassen das Video wohl lieber unkommentiert. Nur eine Sache sei gesagt: #Welcome
Posted by 17:30 SAT.1 NRW on Sunday, September 6, 2015
Our reporters were on hand today - September 6 - for the arrival of 1500 #refugees at the #dortmunder central railway station. What happened here was pure goosebumps. This is what happens when people help people. Only one thing was said: #welcome
- Figure out how to make their way to the VIA station and catch the 19:45 seasonal train — a delay of almost six hours.
- Figure out how to get to the downtown bus terminal and ride the competitors’ buses — this assumed the Coach Canada or Greyhound bus could accommodate their bicycles.
- Stay where they were and hope the next scheduled GO bus had room for their bikes — they chose this option.
(i) the possibility of hourly service during the week on Route 12,
(ii) a real GO bus facility in St. Catharines, funded substantially the federal government, and
(iii) real-time bus information.
None of these action items have come to fruition. So, please, let’s stop this folly of half hour service on weekends; the passengers on Route 12 are from Missouri. For raising false hopes, again, no marks are awarded.
|to:||Cindy Smith |
|date:||Thu, Sep 10, 2015 at 7:56 PM|
|subject:||Girl on the steps.|
So this was the 7:17 pm LSE to Oshawa. This girl got on at Eglinton and sat on the stairs. She did not move until rouge hill only because a seat became available. She got stink eye, hissed at, head slapped with purses, bags, hands and she did not move!! It was funny but this was as much as I could get.
Thursday, September 10, 2015
|date:||Thu, Sep 10, 2015 at 9:15 AM|
|subject:||Seat saver last night - Kitchener 17:50|
I am pretty sure the girl who was hired to talk in that song was on my GO train last night.
"Oh my god, my mom just texted me, and she's like, how do I get to Pickering... does she even know where the car is...?"
"Is this Rouge Hill? Does this mean we can get off here? Is there a bus? I really could use a cab right now."
"Why is this train just stopping at Pickering? Who does that? Why don't they just drive it to Oshawa?"
"This is so stupid. I really need to find a rich guy and wife him so I can stay home and build a shoe closet for myself."
"Why is there no Starbucks on this train? How hard is it to sell coffee?"
If I had duct tape, I would have used it on her.
According to LM who was at Exhibition station just before the item was noticed by a police officer (around 3 pm) and was was witness to the whole "SHUT IT ALL DOWN" chaos, the item in question was shaped like a paper towel roll, with nails protruding from it - as told to her by someone who caught a glimpse of it.
CP24 reported it was cylinder in shape and that the The CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) unit was called in to investigate the item. Eventually, a robot was put on the track to grab it, but it couldn't, so a specialized officer had to be called in donning a special safety suit and he managed to pick up the item.
It was 7 pm before the situation was called off and closer to 9 pm before regular GO train service resumed for Lakeshore West/East, Barrie, Milton and Kitchener.
No one knows what it was. But it was a stupid move by a stupid person. Tens of thousands of customers were impacted by this stunt.
I took the 5:05 pm train that terminates in Pickering. There were thousands of people stranded at Union and thousands more at Pickering waiting for rides from spouses, buses, and for trains that were slowly arriving to continue east. It was an absolute shit show. But at least I got home to see my kid off to bed. There were people who did not get home until 11 pm last night.
I'm pissed off I'm out the fare, since I default to Oshawa, but it pales in comparison to Rebecca who paid $140 in cab fare to get home to Milton to rescue her kids from daycare, as well as an additional $20 in late fees.
Wednesday, September 9, 2015
|date:||Tue, Sep 8, 2015 at 4:08 PM|
This girl was taking two seats. Someone went to sit next her and she said she was saving it. No saving seats!
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Anyway, my kid got herself up, got dressed, made a sorry excuse for a breakfast (but at least she did it) and gathered up her stuff for grade five. I can't wait for high school, or at least a grade when I can stop paying for a babysitter... it's coming! I can almost taste it.
But I'm not here to judge anyone who feels they need to manage their children different from how I was raised, or how I intend to raise my own teenager. I don't live in your house and I certainly don't know your life. I just find the phone calls from the train fascinating. I'm sorry I missed them.