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This is a question Public Transport Trauma

Completely Underwhelmed writes, "I was on a bus the other day when a man got on wearing shorts, over what looked like greeny grey leggings. Then the stench hit me. The 'leggings' were a mass of open wounds, crusted with greenish solidified pus that flaked off in bits as he moved."

What's the worst public transport experience you've ever had?

(, Thu 29 May 2008, 15:13)
Pages: Latest, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, ... 1

This question is now closed.

Wrong bloody bus
If I ever need to go to Newcastle I jump on the bus rather than drive (I hate trying to park in Newcastle). This involves getting on the express bus and arriving 30 minutes or so later after a nice ride up the A19.

One day we took my cousins up to Newcastle for the day. Now it so happens I was on tablets that had a very definite diuretic effect. I went before we left the house, and again before we got on the bus figuring 30 minutes is a piece of piss to hold onto my piss. Now, did I mention there were two express buses to Newcastle? No? Ah well, I didn't know at the time myself.

We boarded the bus and set off. 20 minutes later my bladder started screaming at me. No problem if I was on the bus that goes straight down the A19, big problem when the bastard is going through Durham and a million little villages to get to Newcastle. It took over an hour to get there. By the time we were approaching Gateshead I was sweating, cursing, and all but ready to just pee myself to stop the agony of a bursting bladder.

I managed to hold on till we got to the bus station in Newcastle, ran for the loos, spent a minute looking for a 20p bloody coin, only to see someone coming out the automatic loo as I ran to it. The door shut and I had to wait another bloody minute before I could finally pee. Never abloodygain will I go on a bus when I'm on diuretic tablets.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 20:01, Reply)
for someone who uses public transport a lot (not having a car) i don't think i've had that many traumatic experiences, which i think makes me the luckiest cunt in the world. i mean there was the time i got stuck in sheffield for a while because someone hit a railway bridge..and the time when i was 9 that i had to wait on a train to cornwall for 2 hours (which was fine with me, i had my gameboy and they kept handing out free coke and crisps, it was my family who suffered because the lack of hot water = no tea/coffee) and the time i couldn't get a bus into manchester for half an hour because the one i was waiting for had set on fire further up the road.

and there have been nutters, sure... the man in his 60s who ranted to a 13-year-old me about the state of this nation's rail system, or the woman who told my dad he looked like a "white Craig David", but they were fairly inoffensive, and none of them smelt funny or tried to molest me; a few months back i was queuing for a national express coach with a man who smelt like he had shat himself, but he got on the other coach (to scunthorpe, i believe) so i was spared his unholy stench. the toilet blocked on the coach i actually boarded, but it was only a 3 hour journey punctuated by a 20 minute stop in leeds halfway through, so i could get by without using it (tried once, but the piss was almost lapping over the edge of the bowl, and i didn't want to be the one who caused it to flood down the rest of the coach)

so, only minor irritations really. i suppose i still have a lot of respect for the people who have to deal with the drunks, chavs, tramps and everyone else who stinks of piss in this world, and they still come out to drive the buses and guard the trains that even the most car-reliant of us need to get around every now and then.

i dunno, maybe i'm just a bit drunk, but i love public transport.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:56, Reply)
Oh, here's another!!!
This is a particular delight for me. I used to live in Basingstoke, and get the train to Sheffield on a regular basis.

To get through the trauma that is Virgin Trains, I used to have my CD Walkman and a raft of CDs at hand. Being a bit 'mutton' I used to have it slightly loud, but not too loud to piss anyone off. Apart from one day...

I'd got on at Sheffield and ended up sat in a table section with this lovely old dear who was great conversation, her being a bit of an academic, and shared her toffees with me on a regular basis. Coming into Tamworth, she motioned to me that she was going to have a little sleep. Fine I said, hoping that my Joy Division CDs weren't going to disturb her.

Anyway, as we move out of Tamworth, this sweaty troglodyte parks his ass across from me and my adopted gran, and proceeded to give me the dirtiest look for a few minutes. Obviously angered by me feigning ignorance, he then reached over, flicked one of my earphones out and bellowed (ironically, as you'll see), "THIS IS THE QUIET COACH, NO STEREOS, YEAH???".

Well obviously taken aback, and a bit embarrassed by the scene being formed around us, I promptly went to put my stereo awake when the old dear, stirred, leant over to the gobshite and said...

"No dear, this is Coach E - Coach D is the quiet coach. Now piss off" (imagine the 'piss off' a la Her Majesty, and you've got it).

Well, talk about hilarity. At this point everyone watching burst out laughing, the fat bloke pissed off, and my elderly friend passed me another toffee.

(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:49, Reply)
I'd just proposed to my girlfriend
on the spot we first met, just outside the London Eye.

I had a ring. I went down on one knee. She said yes.

Bystanders clapped.

A Belgian businessman asked for my email address so he could send me the photos he'd taken of us.

A busker was playing "Is this love?" by Bob Marley, so we gave him a tenner for him to play it again so we could dance.

We ran, laughing and jumping through the streets, telling anyone who cared how happy we were.

We drank port in Covent Garden and planned our future together.

We caught the tube, where a young man in white sports gear spat a sizeable glob of mucus at us because she has more melanin in her skin than I do. My immediate reaction was to think "I don't want to live in this country any more" - something I've never thought before or since.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:46, 4 replies)
the bus to manchester
I boarded a literally packed bus with my then girl-friend in oldham and sat down on those fold up seats at the front since they were the only empty seats, we only managed to go about 3 stops from the station when an elderly gentleman with one of those even more elderly shopping bags with wheels and he sat next to me.

To say that this poor guy smelled bad would be an under-statement of epic proportions.

About 10 minutes after he sat down he began swaying form side to side with the bus, obviously asleep i just ignored him, well this became difficult when he began leaning on me, and then he put his arm across me.

Now I'm a fairly easy going guy willing to let things slide but this was too far when he began drooling..eurrgh.

I gently knudged him to try and awake him but to no avail, my girlfriend even tried but again to no success.
I decided to simply get off the bus but i couldn't move the man's arm. Something was wrong..

Turned out that when the man was about to board the bus he was already heavily drunk..too drunk to realise that he wa son death's door.

The poor bugger faded away on my right arm on the 82 to manchester... talk about public transport hell.. or heaven if he was a good'n
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:37, Reply)
Bus Cuntery
This is partly recycled from an older QOTW, so apologies if you've seen it before...

This tale of busanthropy involves a friend of mine. He doesn't like London bus drivers much. On the way home from a long, hot day at work, our bus driver was whizzing along his route like a rally driver, as they are wont to do. I quietly, reluctantly tolerate this kind of driving. My friend is not so patient and sees himself as a kind of Sam-Beckett-of -Quantum-Leap figure, putting right what only just went wrong. At the next red light, he paced up to the driver and said (in a richly condescending tone) "Oi, 'mate', what... are... you ... doing? It's a bus, not a sports car"

"I'm the driver, I know what I'm doing" crowed the bus driver, using that special arrogance that only Transport for London staff seem able to muster.

My mate's instant, bemused response has become legendary amongst my friends, and is regularly aired in our office:

"No mate, if you knew what you were doing, you wouldn't be *doing* what you're doing."

The open-mouthed driver pondered this succinct pearl of wisdom for a few seconds, then his head dropped as he suddenly and completely realised that his entire career was worthless shit.

Then the lights turned green. The bus pulled away slowly and we enjoyed the rest of the journey in limousine-smooth style.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:29, 2 replies)
there was this one time
where somebody had a drink with them on the underground. and then quietly drank a bit of it.

man that was awful.

i was like, "they" should ban that so that i can feel safe.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:28, Reply)
I've got one.
One afternoon an acquaintance of mine invited me to watch a soccer match and fund-raiser held by the local cross-dressing society.

Oh, the awkwardness of watching unfit men in skirts and heels chasing that ball up and down a muddy field certainly caused me some public trans-sport trauma.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 19:05, Reply)
This happened a long time ago.
I was the bus, about 14, dripping with pubescent puppy fat, shyness and facial piercings with large steel spikes. I was sitting on the back seat alone, looking out of the window, probably with a scowl on my chubby face.
A rather rough looking older gentleman sat next to me. I shifted uncomfortably. "Nice piercings love, did they hurt?" I grunt back a positive reply.
We "chat" for a few minutes, when he gets out a piece of paper and folds it in half so there's a crease in the middle. He pours a line of white powder of questionable legality into this crease and tells me to hold it. He proceeds to snort this and then lech over me for the remaining journey.
I got off 3 stops early.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 18:29, Reply)
moist and wet
A year ago I got on a crowded bus where a couple of people were standing but there was one free seat. I assumed the people standing were waiting to get off at the next stop so I sat on the vacant seat.

It was only after a couple of stops that I realised that the seat of my brand new pants was feeling somewhat warm. A couple of stops after that I realised my pants were not just warm but also wet and getting wetter.

And that smell! Surely it's not... !!!
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 18:26, Reply)
Not exactly a bad experience, well for me anyway.
It’s a warm Monday rush-hour, I'm on the Bakerloo line from Paddington down to Charing X. The train was full and at Marylebone a hot, bothered and rather pregnant lady got on, I offered her my seat, no biggie, it's only 10 mins to my stop anyway.

At this point I’m nothing special I’m just a bloke in a suit who stood up for a woman, big deal.

I go back to my paper only to be barged past by a couple of twats with rucksacks who get on at baker street who whilst forcing their way onto the train annoy everyone standing in the lobby bit and one of them bangs the pregnant lady in the face with his rucksack.

They then proceeded basically tell the train that they were so excited to be getting the Eurostar from Waterloo (for this incident 'twas a while ago) and that their train is a mere 20 minutes away, they hoped they'd make it as they had restricted seats and needed to be on that train.

Alas dear reader, incensed as I was at the sight of the poor pregnant lady being spoinged in the face by the tail end of a rucksack without so much as the merest hint of an apology that I feel I somewhat over-reacted. I was no longer merely a bloke in a suit but an avenging angel, i did what any freeborn Englishman would have done in that situation.

Behind the back of twat #1 who was leaning with his rucksack against the pole, I winked broadly at the pregnant lady and proceeded to tie every available hanging strap and cord on the rucksack round the pole using as baroquely complicated knots as I could manage in the time remaining to me before I got off.

It makes my heart glad to imagine twat #1 attempting to rush for the Eurostar, it really does.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:51, 9 replies)
I took a 12 minute train journey to work while I was working part time as a stoodent etc. About once every 10 journeys, there would be a problem. Fair enough, I said, and made sure I got the 2nd from last train before rather than the last train that would get me for work on time. This sorted the problem out almost all of the time.

I covered the owners during these days running the place. Once again delays were happening, and it was going to make me late for work ( some delays just weren't going to go away after one train).

The exchange with my boss was as such:

Me: "Look, I'm really sorry, but it's happened again. Is it possible that you can open the shop?"
Boss: "What's the problem with the trains?"
Me: "They don't know yet. I've asked and they haven't received any information about it"
Boss: "Well you need to go speak to them and explain that it's *very important* that you get to work on time, and that they need to speed up the trains. Tell them off if you must."


It doesn't help that this behaviour is endorsed by GP surgery receptionists, who only respond to middle class women throwing a wobbly over the phone.

I feel sorry for the many staff who receive abuse like this through to other's sheer stupidity. Give those poor sods a break, especially as they're probably getting fuxord more royally than you are.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:44, Reply)
probably more for my parents than me
3:30 on my first day of secondary school, I'm 11 years old, I've just finished for the day and am proceeding happily to the bus stop, just in time to see the bus home driving off. This was no more than two minutes after school finished, with a massive queue of kids still standing there - presumably someone had pissed the driver off in some way and he'd had enough, which would happen several more times in my days at that school.

But, no problem - there was another bus purportedly going to a location even closer to my house! Brilliant, no changing at the bus station, I thought, and got on. Only it wasn't going there, as another child on the bus helpfully informed me, before calling me a prick - the driver confirmed this, the reason being he "couldn't be arsed" to change the number and destination on the front. yeah, nice one. After that I joined the rest of the kids who had been left behind, now waiting at the bus stop down the road - 3:50 now, the timetable indicating a bus about every 15 minutes. I sort of needed to pee, but I could hang on till the bus station.

One hour later, I'm still waiting, and finally resort to taking a slash in the bushes behind the bus stop. It was another half hour before the bus turned up, and half an hour after that before I reached the bus station and could phone my mum (this was before every kid had a mobile phone, and there was no phonebox anywhere near the school).

to find out my mum, naturally shitting herself about her offspring's first day at "big school", had just rung the police.

for fuck's sake. thanks stagecoach!

edit: come to think of it, a similar thing happened on my first day at uni as well - obviously there was no police involvement that time, but i did miss dinner in the halls, and perhaps more importantly, the Simpsons
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:35, Reply)
arriva, last weekend
Thought a 12 seat minibus was a perfect substitute for a 4 carriage train, and probably didn't foresee that more than about 12 people per half hour might need to use the route.

You'd think as a bus company they'd have some buses to use.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:28, 3 replies)
one trick I've learned is this
On the rare occasion when I have to travel to London I make sure that the train has a dinning car.
You can get a not too bad dinner for £10 and get to sit in first class. And they bring you coffee. You can stay there the whole journey, doesn't matter what kind of ticket you have.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:20, 2 replies)
"jumpers" one unders, etc.
i feel for these poor buggers who kill themselves, and everyone affected by it. especially the railway staff who have to tidy up and see the mess.

maybee if we all stopped reffering to these lost souls as selfish cunts, etc, maybee one soul would be saved as it might prove to someone, somewhere, considering suicide, that the world isnt totally full of people who dont give a shit.

have a heart for fucks sake.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 17:12, 1 reply)
the incosiderance of tube users
i was on the northern line going from waterloo to leicester square in one summer evening, for beers, when i pregnant lady got on at enbankment, at the other end of the packed carriage. i noticed her, so did everyone else.

but no cunt offered her a seat. and i was at the other end of the carraige. what could i do?

then i did something. god knows how i didnt get stabbed. i hollered really loudly, "excuse me love!! HELLO! YEA YOU, PREGNANT LADY, YOU CAN HAVE MY SEAT IF YOU WANT!!" she smiled as no other wanker had offered. but no one would move and let her through to sit down.

i lost it. i got up and literally barged through the carraige and took her hand, smiled and said, "come with me love" so she smiled and followed me. i sat her down, and loudly complained about the "FUCKING SELFISH CUNTS WHO CANT EVEN OFFER A LADY THEIR SEAT." she whole heartedly agreed and was secretly laughing at my sheer guts at insulting the whole carraige. we spoke for few minutes too, and she was a lovely lady.

she thanked me and i was on my way. made me feel great.

please offer the elderley, pregnant, retarded etc your seat. i know you paid for it but come on, its common courtesy. is it just me or does anyone else agree with this?
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 16:58, 4 replies)
Non-smoking idiots...
I moved to Middlesbrough (where I have since taken up residence) for university just before the turn of the millenium. This has necessitated return trips to my beloved Aberdeen.

Originally, these trips were by bus, which led to some interesting experiences (such as the time when the bus I was catching to Glasgow was due to arrive at the same time as the bus I was catching from there to Aberdeen left. Unsurprisingly, I missed the latter).

But I can't get a return from Middlesbrough to Aberdeen by bus anymore I have now to let the train take the strain.

Back in the good old, pre-smoking ban days, there was one carriage on GNER trains that was smoking. So, I'd get the train to either Darlington or Newcastle, then get the train from there straight through to Aberdeen. Some music and a book (or, in the latter days, my laptop and some DVD's), large bottle of Dr Pepper and the only reason I had to move was to go to the toilet.

So, I'm in the middle of one such trip when I decide to roll a cigarette. As I am doing so, an oldish couple attract my attention and inform me that the entire train is now no smoking. I tell them they're wrong, and they inform me that it was just announced over the intercom.

They must have been banking on the fact that I was plugged into my personal stereo (no MP3 player at the time) and couldn't hear any announcements. What they don't know is that I'm a considerate traveller who turns his music down to a level where I can enjoy it but won't be (overly, anyway) annoying other passengers. This means that I can hear any announcements made as well.

But I decide to play along and ask the ticket inspector next time he comes along. The train stops at another station and two old men get on, sit beside them and instantly light up their pipes. The couple get up, pick up their belongings and flounce off to another carriage.

WHY? When you have the rest of the train to yourself, why would you sit in the smoking section and then complain about people smoking? Not even my non smoking friends can answer that one.

Length? Trip takes about 7 hours.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 16:50, 1 reply)
3 words
Park and Ride
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 16:21, Reply)
I've just remembered this one...
Seems like many others have suffered similar fates, but I had to share.

Once, I had to get to Daventry for an interview. For those who know it, it has no station, so getting there from Sheffield for 9AM could only be described as a bit of a slog.

I'd had to get up at 4 in the morning to get to the interview. My mum, bless her, got up at the same time to make me some butties for the journey and despite the taxi forgetting to come get me at first (I'd booked the night before like a good little lad), the journey there went smoothly, even the taxi ride from the nearest station to Daventry, Long Buckby (consisting of a house, a station and a telephone box) went remarkably well.

The interview, well, it could have been better. I was still a callow youth at that time and had never really left my house much, never mind Yorkshire, so my interview skills were still lacking.

Mind, I got back to Long Buckby fine (on the company, woohoo) and the train came in.

Now back in Sheffield the concept of 'first class' on a regional train was alien at the time, so I amazed myself at the relative luxury I was surrounded by when I plonked myself down on a seat. It was only one stop to Rugby where I needed to change, there was no-one else about so couldn't see it being a problem, and to top it off, I still had my mum's butties left.


And then.

Surprisingly short conductor: "Tickets please"
Me: "There you go"
Surprisingly short conductor with frown: "This is first class, you've got a standard ticket, you'll have to move"
Me: "I'm only going one stop (looking round), it's empty in here, give me a break, it's been a long day, I've been up since 4 in the morning"
Surprisingly short conductor with frown and little man syndrome: "Haven't we all, now you'll have to shift."
Me, standing up (my 6'0 seemingly towering over his 4'7 or whatever), gesturing wildly: "What's the point, doesn't this terminate at the next stop anyway?"

Now, at this point you'd have thought Hitler The Short Controller would have spotted the common sense approach.

But then.

Hitler The Short Controller: "Yes, but what if others get on? I'm afraid I'll have to charge you for first class travel."

It was at this point that I laughed, sat down, and made it perfectly clear charging me more wasn't going to happen, and that if I was to be moved, he'd have to drag me, my butties and my Guardian down the carriage himself, after which I would do him for assault (I was in that kind of mood) and who would sound more idiotic in court (probably me, thick accent and all, but that's beside the point I guess).

Hitler then replies:

"Well with that attitude sir, I'm going to have to ask you to leave at the next stop, good day."

Me: "Not a problem."

Victory achieved, and with the fascist blind to his own stupidity, I settled down to my ham and mustard butty, quickly scanned the cricket results from yesterday and upon arriving at Rugby, alighted, gave the conductor the ol' twos-up whilst he seemed to be heading for the transport police and jumped on the waiting train going oop North where common sense seems to prevail...

Yorkshire won by 3 wickets as well. It's the simple things...
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 16:17, 1 reply)
One of the most frustrating moments of my life
Okay, this one requires a bit of background. I am a big fan of the Eurovision Song Contest. You may or may not know that a large number of Eurovision fans are gay - say, 80% of them. There is a straight minority, however, of whom I am one. What this means is that I am very, very used to hanging around with large groups of gay men. On the whole this is not a problem: I like gay men. Indeed, some of my best friends are gay. However, during most of my teens and early 20s, it meant that most of the sexual interest coming in my direction originated from gay men - and not from girls. As a straight man, this caused me no small degree of frustration.

Anyway, onto the story.

I think it was in 2005 or so. I had just been on a night out in the West End, and I was taking the Piccadilly Line back from Leicester Square to Hatton Cross. The carriage in which I was sitting contained only three people: myself; a girl sitting immediately opposite from me; and a guy in his 20s who had entered and sat himself down on the same side as me, with one empty seat between us.

I was listening to my iPod, and minding my own business (as one normally does on the Tube), except for admiring the assets of the girl sitting opposite me. She was quite pretty, and when she was not looking my way I was enjoying the view. Some time into the journey, I noticed a movement out of the corner of my eye. I looked, and saw that the other guy one seat removed from me, had turned towards me and looked as if he was about to say something. However, when I turned to look at him, he turned away. I went back to my music.

A few minutes later, this happened again. This time I paused my iPod, and took out one earphone, to look quizically at him, inviting him to speak if he wanted. However, he looked away again.

Eventually, as the train pulled into a station (I can't remember which), I looked down to see that he had in his hand a piece of paper, and the hand containing that paper was resting on the seat in between us. He then moved his hand closer to me - and, as the train stopped and opened its doors, he dropped the piece of paper right next to me as he gave me a look - then got up and walked out.

By this time, the pretty girl sitting opposite me had noticed what was going on, and she watched as I picked up the paper and read:

"I think you're cute. Call me or SMS. James. [07xxx xxxxxx]"


Normally it would have just been amusing - but considering my background, I can hardly describe my frustration. In the middle of a Eurovision party at which I am the only straight guy, then fine - at least it might be explained. But to have a random person express interest in me on the Tube - and that person was a MAN - then it's like Fate was taking the piss.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 16:01, 3 replies)
Coach Craps.
Non-stopping coach from Bristol to London, with my hubby & the Dad-in-Law, on the way back from the Christening of the the latest bundle of joy produced by one of my many Catholic Sister-in-Laws.

Naturally, a large amount of drink was consumed at the post-ceremony dinner. And what does drink make people want to do, kids? That's right. Wee. Lots.

Unfortunately, about half an hour into the journey, hubby dearest, who would shit in front of the Queen herself, should the need take him, decides it's a good time to drop the kids off at the pool. The result? Toilet blocked by the unflushable Log of Death. And as the toilet door on this particular coach was faulty, & would not close properly, the entire coach was treated to the fragrant aroma for the remainder of the journey. Which naturally involved a long delay on a hot motorway due to traffic problems.

I, like most of the other passengers, was not brave enough to use the toilet, despite the fact that eight pints of lager were causing liquid to back up to my eyeballs. By the time we got to Victoria coach station, I felt like my bladder was about to explode. So of course, our bags were the last to be unloaded, meaning that there was a sizeable line by the time I made it to the nearest women's kharzi. A queue mainly populated by other women from the same coach, who delighted in giving me evils. For a dump my husband took.

Next time I take him anywhere, I'm going to stick a damn cork up there first!

As a side-note, upon loudly letting one go on our holiday flight last year (causing the old lady across the aisle to have a coughing fit), he then proudly informed us all that we were shut in with his offering until the plane landed. Charming.

Length? Well, he does have some good points...
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 15:46, Reply)
Orange County public transportation sucks.
You need a car to get around down here. Last year, I couldn't drive for 3 months as my drivers license had expired and couldn't renew it until my employment authorization was renewed, which was running 90 days behind schedule.
Bugger. But I did the noble thing and didn't drive.
Work was only 1 20 minute bus ride away, so that was no big deal but one weekend there was a massive fishing tourney going on with my fishing club having a bbq etc.
Being a bit too British and too proud to ask if someone would take me, I decided I would get the bus.
It turned out to be an epic journey. A 30 minute car ride turned into the 4 hour (but somewhat amusing) bus ride from hell involving 3 busses.

So, 2 fishing poles and a tackle bag, as well as my handbag in hand, I toddle off to the bus stop getting some strange looks off people on the way.
Bus #1 comes along and I duly bought my day pass ($2.50) and take my seat.
15 minutes later I'm let off the bus to wait a half hour for bus #2.
Get on bus #2 all the way up Harbor Blvd to Chapman. 3 fucking times I was asked the obvious question "going fishing are you?".
Bus #3 would be along in 45 minutes, so I pop into the bar that's handily sitting in the strip mall behind me and have a quick beer. Several offers of a ride to the lake from lecherous and drunken old men were politely declined.
Finally get on bus #3 which was going to take about 1 1/2 hours to get up to the main road to the lake.
The driver tells me my day pass is not valid for that bus. Ok, fine. I hand over another $1.50 for the fare.
The bus is packed. I have 2 fishing poles and a tackle bag in hand. Does anyone give me a hand or let me sit down? No. 3 stops later, someone on the back of the bus gets off so I make my way to their seat.......just as the bus driver is pulling away and slams his brakes on to avoid getting hit by a boy racer.

Thunk, goes I. On my hands and knees. Fishing poles flying everywhere. As I go to stand up, I realise I have a fishing hook now stuck in my leg. Much merriment and mirth from the rest of the passengers as I sit on the floor of the bus and get my pliers out. One guy looks at me as I'm yanking the hook out of my leg, turns a whiter shade of pale and almost hurls as I yank it out and hold it up victoriously.

6 people stand up and offer to give me their seats.

After some lovely chit chat with a Mexican fellow about fishing, I arrive at my final bus stop to catch bus number 4.
Meanwhile, my teammates have all heard about my epic journey and have been calling me to see how I'm doing.

I get off the bus stop, and there are 10 of my friends in our club t-shirts holding out cups of "water" (beer) for me. After a round of applause for making it that far, I was told to stop being a stubborn little bitch and was given a ride the rest of the way to the lake.
And the next day after an epic nights fishing, drinking and bbq'ing I was given a ride home and told not to do it again.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 15:29, Reply)
Transcontinental train toilet terror
Imagine if you will a packed Indian train, the usual images of 200% loading capacity and people with bags and goats on the roof will suffice. Imagine then, a carriage toilet which consists of a sort of half stable door and a hole onto the tracks whizzing below. Picture the poor English traveller who having glanced at the filth slimed floor of said toilet decides to try to hang on in the face of increasingly painful stomach cramps and if not a turtle's head then something much wetter tapping at the back door. Take a moment to savour the flash of inspiration in which this desperate traveller runs into the bog of doom and cunningly, nay artfully, pops his shorts onto his head lest they be soiled by the evil floor.At last relax with the traveller as he lets go his troublesome load just as the train enters a tunnel. There is a Whoosh. The inrushing air fires the contents of his bowels and assorted gunge playfully up his back, into his hair and, of course, onto his shorts.He returns, bedraggled, to his seat- where he is sniffed at and generally glared at by his tightly packed fellow passengers. True story. Luckily it wasn't me.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 15:20, Reply)
Public transport flora & fauna.
As one of the increasing number of people who just plain can't afford the whole driving lark, I have to face the daily trauma of the Bus of Doom.

The service is generally fairly reliable, & vast majority of passengers are polite, & keep themselves to themselves. However, there are several common types of nuisance passenger I'm sure we've all observed, & I usually have to put up with most at some point on my hour long journey. Here is my little bestiary of bus twunts:

The Nutter - This person will usually insist on sitting next to you, regardless of where you are seated on the bus, or how empty it is. They often sing random bits of songs off key, or insist on talking to you about the magical pie fairies that live under their fingernails, & how much it annoys them when the fairies stay up all night eating purple bananas & listening to Will Young.

The Perv - Sits close to you, & leers with occasional drooling. Worse still, sits behind you so that they have opportunity to try & grope you when they pass. Even worse, gets off at same stop as you, causing you to run into your house or office at high speed. Occasionally makes disturbing fwapping sound.

The Gross-Out-Special - A person of such great repulsiveness, that you give serious consideration to getting off the bus & walking rather than sitting within three rows of this gelatinous, smelly, flatulent, drooling, unwashed creature in it's crusty & stained clothes. A window seat is essential to avoid a belly or armpit to the face when this person leaves the bus. So gross that you mentally make a note of where they were sat, & consciously avoid using that seat on the bus for at least a week.

The Mobile Phone DJ - Kindly provides music for the entire bus from his mobile phone. May have difficulty in providing this service later in the journey however, as the buttons become a little difficult to reach once other passengers have kindly inserted the phone into his rectum for safe-keeping.

Mother Chav - Gets onto bus with enough kids to start a football team. From the behaviour of said kids, I'd guess Leeds or Millwall. There's always at least one baby, which cries constantly, with mum making no effort to placate it whatsoever. As a form of revenge for her lack of attention, baby will usually have a crap of such ferocity, my hubby couldn't do better after an egg & baked-bean vindaloo. Meanwhile, any kids capable of walking or talking run up & down the aisle screaming. This is largely ignored, although mum will periodically scream at the top of her lungs for the kids to 'faaaarking shut it & siddown, you faaarking little shits'. They never do.

The Lazy, Moaning Cunt - When the bus is running late & overcrowded, every passenger loves the perfectly able-bodied chap or chapess who gets on the bus, spends ages having a go at the driver for being late, whilst painstakingly counting out their change &/or arguing over the fare. As everyone knows, these activities are bound to speed up the running of said bus. After ensuring that the driver is fully aware he or she is fifteen minutes late, they then proceed to get off at the next bus stop, a two minute walk down the road.

Kamikaze Bus Drivers - Yes, I appreciate your commitment to getting me home on time. If you know that the light is about to go red, please race towards it a breakneck speed in the hopes of making through, only to bottle it severely at the first hint of amber, slamming on the breaks & causing your passengers to fly several feet out of their seats & smash their faces on the back of the seat in front. And if your bus is overcrowded, cornering at high velocity is always a good idea. After all, many people lack human interaction these days, & what better way to get to know the person stood by your seat than having them fall on top of you?

And all school children present in groups of two or more - Sound on a bus functions in exactly the same way as it does anywhere else. So there is no need to shout at the tops of your voices. I'm sure the spotty little oik in the seat next to you is not deaf, & can hear you perfectly well. Chances are also very high that the majority of other passengers on the bus also have adequate hearing. It is therefore not a good idea to discuss their pros & cons loudly, or to bitch about the fact that I am sat on the back seat. You do not own the back of a bus, even if many of you do happen to resemble one. I am sat at the back of the bus because I have a long journey, & wish to be considerate to other passengers who are making a shorter trip. Also, if I am sat at the back of the bus, The Perv cannot sit behind me or walk past me, which is a bonus.

Speaking of Pervs; secondary school boys; you're perfectly right. What every woman in her twenties wants is a bunch of pre-pubescent zit-bags staring & pointing at her boobs for the entire journey. If you & your little chums want to see tits that badly, I'd suggest a mirror. In addition, it should also be noted that a loud farting contest is not the way to impress girls on a bus.

Length joke running approximately 25 minutes late, due to group of old women on visit to local bingo hall taking it in turns to tell the driver that length jokes were better in their day.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 14:41, 3 replies)
Unwanted Attention
Slightly worse for wear, I got on to the night bus on a Monday and slumped against a window. This was in London, and it wasn't unusual to find some strange people traveling at this time of night, but generally they're harmless enough. You'll also normally see a group of kids towards the back of the bus, playing tinny crap R'n'B out of stolen mobile phones. And people like me, been at work, been out for a few drinks, going home to sleep and do exactly the same the next day. And then, on occasion, so have the misfortune to meet someone like the guy stood next to me. Who was absolutely shit-faced.

This, in itself, wouldn't normally pose a problem. I'm a friendly enough guy, intelligent enough to talk myself out of a bad situation, and could probably handle myself if pushed. But I was about to be put in a position that was beyond anything I'd have to deal with before.

Shitfaced Man (quite possibly not his real name, but I didn't think to ask) was late 30's, looked Mediterranean, a big, hairy man who was sweating pure ether from every pore, drunkenly leans in my direction, a bit closer than was necessary. He was a lot bigger than me. "All right?" he slurred. "Had a good night?". The bus turned a corner and he nearly fell over.

"Not as good as your night, by the looks of it" I laughed at him, in good humour.

Suddenly, his expression changed. He looked serious. He was trying to say something, but the words were tangled on the first few attempts. "Are you... you... are you... f-f-f-fucking... are you gay?" he finally managed. In my own drunken haze, it was a difficult to work out how we'd arrived at this tangent, so I just answered honestly: "Erm, no."

He carried on staring at me. He looked angry. "So what." he said. Then, "SO WHAT?" he shouted. He now had the attention of everyone around us. "Do you want to come back to my house and fuck?" he said, and again, presumably for the benefit of all of the other passengers who were suddenly all staring at me. "DO YOU WANT TO COME TO MY HOUSE AND FUCK?"

I probably should explain where the bus was at this point - it was a route that went through central London, past increasingly rough Islington estates and into Hackney, an area not reknowned for it social acceptance of - well, frankly, anything. If you get attacked in Hackney, there's not always a reason for it, so to kick the shit out of what looked to everyone present, to pissed blokes talking about fucking each other, would have been judged as perfectly reasonable. I was getting very worried.

People were staring, with expressions of aggression. No-one else was talking on the bus. All attention was on my response. I said to him, quietly, "Shut up. If you start shouting shit like that hear, you're going to get stabbed. Just shut up."

He looked rejected. I could see this ticking over in his mind. It seemed to have worked - to have made sense in the scramble of thoughts inside his head.

He was silent. For about 30 seconds. And then mumbled something. "I bet you've got a big cock." I pretended I hadn't heard him. This was a mistake. "I BET YOU'VE GOT A BIG COCK. SHOW ME YOUR BIG COCK!" he bellowed. He was now pointing at me as well, which seemed a bit unnecessary. Hoodies towards the back of the bus were edging of their seats. There was a very real atmosphere of impending violence. The bus pulled to a stop. The doors opened. No-one got off. "I'M TAKING YOU HOME AND YOU'RE GOING TO SUCK MY COCK" he shouted, and this time actually made a grab for me. I hurled myself at the doors, and managed to get through them as they shut, nearly trapping my foot. I turned back towards the doors, to see shitfaced man with his face squashed and bloody against the now shut glass door he'd just smashed his face. The bus pulled a way and shitfaced man disappeared into the night.

Now safe, I laughed uncontrollably for about a minute. And then set off for home, this time deciding it was probably safest to walk from here on. At which point, I was promptly mugged at knife point.

Length? I didn't tell him, so I'm not telling you.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 14:28, Reply)
Person under a train...
There have been numerous stories relating to the delays caused by people choosing London Underground Trains as their method of committing suicide, and having endured many a journey on the tube I've been subjected to several of these delays myself.

However, a story a friend once told me is always the first thing that comes to mind when I've heard the familiar distorted voice announce that there is a delay to x line as a result of a person under a train...

----- wavy lines -----

Said friend's father was a member of the met police and, as such, would have occasion to deal with incidents on the underground. On one of these occasions he was asked to attend to the aftermath of such a jumper, and what he saw there will live with him for the rest of his life: he arrived at the scene to find a train sat only half in the station. There was something of a commotion at the front of the train and he was swiftly despatched to assist with the operation. He walked with some apprehension to the area and clambered down onto the tracks to be confronted by the sight of a young woman, who, through some hideous ill fortune, was still just about alive and suffering the most dreadful demise imaginable. He was understandably sketchy about the minute details (and I'm infinitely pleased he was), but the one thing he did describe at length was how the woman looked at him, and repeatedly pleaded for his help.

Having served with the police for a number of years, he'd encountered a great deal of unpleasant things that the majority of us never have to witness, but this was by far the worst thing he'd ever seen, and it's one that he'll never forget.

I've never been able to feel any frustration, aggravation or annoyance at the slight delay to my journey this causes. The only thing I can feel is absolute sympathy for those that have to suffer the aftermath. And that's to say nothing of the suffering and torment someone must have gone through in order to find it in themselves to jump in front of a train in the first place.

Apologies if this comes across as righteous or worthy, but I do find it annoying that people are so caught up in their own life that they can't appreciate that their slightly extended journey home is nothing in comparison to the horror that others will be enduring as they deal with the consequences following each announcement that there is a person under a train.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 12:46, 4 replies)
Dont you just
Hate it when you get on the bus and the bus driver says you cant get on because he doesnt have change of 10 pounds. What is that all about, dont they give out change in the bus depot? It happened to me the other day 'sorry no change' ah fuck off and go and get a proper job.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 12:33, 7 replies)
Bit of a pearoast...
... but thought it was worth putting here.

Usually, I visit my girlfriend who lives in London, by driving down the A1 on a friday night. One time though, I had to use public transport as I was going to a gig on the sunday night and so wouldn't really be able to drive (due to heavy drinking, late finish etc). So I decided to catch the train.

I got on the train at Huntingdon and experienced no major trauma there. And on the whole, the journey was pretty uneventful.

Until we reached Stevenage.

My only real previous knowledge of Stevenage is driving past it on the A1 and laughing at all the retards in shite cars with bits stuck on (my favourite was a mk2 fiesta with downlighters and an exhaust like a fucking coal scuttle). But now I would be experiening it first hand. And I wish I hadn't.

It started when 'she' got on. I'd say no older than 16 and easily a dress size 18 poured into a white size 14 dress that managed to be too short and too low at the same time, and left nothing to the imagination. She staggered on with her delightful chums, swigging from a bottle of blue WKD. They then proceeded to sit across from me and start chatting (well, shouting) about all the fun and merriment they would be having later that night (or chavvy boys they would undoubtedly be catching a variety of diseases off of later that night. In a bus shelter).

I noticed after a short while that our girl in white had fallen asleep - or passed out. It was at that point that the horror unfolded. Despite concentating very hard on my ipod and the songs contained within, I couldn't help but notice the damp stain that was slowly spreading across her lap. Or the unmistakable smell of shit coming from her direction. A smell that was pungent enough to a) wake her up and b)make her throw up.


(The horror didn't stop there though. Eventually crossed London, got to Waterloo and got on the train to Kingston with a bunch of girls who were clearly on a birthday adventure. Drinking from bottles of screwtop wine. After a short time, one of them performed a perfect 5 finger spread - the never successful but always amusing practice of putting your hand over your mouth to prevent the torrent of vomit from escaping.)

I hate trains.
(, Sat 31 May 2008, 12:27, 3 replies)

This question is now closed.

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