This morning while riding the MBTA 66 bus, a stylish woman boarded the bus in Coolidge Corner pushing an extremely large stroller, kind of a hybrid between a Victorian-era pram and a monster truck. She didn’t get far though as passengers standing in the aisle would not budge even though there was plenty room for them for them to stand further back in the bus. They seemed to be acting as if they wanted her to somehow get around them and go to the back of the bus herself. So she and her stroller were stuck at the front of the bus next to the driver for a few stops and people getting on and off just squeezed by her (even though it may have been easier for a lot off the passengers getting off to use the rear door).
I wavered between who I found more annoying: the woman who brought a ginormous stroller on public transportation or the passengers who steadfastly refused to let her in thus creating a dangerous bottleneck. Luckily, after a few stops things cleared up and the woman with the stroller moved over to the handicap seats, flipped them up and stood with the stroller out of the way. This was a good thing because as we passed through Allston we picked up more and more passengers until people were squished in like sardines. Altogether and ugly and unpleasant ride.
I came to the following conclusions on how various individuals could improve the bus-riding experience for everyone:
- Parents: Babies are small, so they don’t need SUV-sized strollers. A small stroller or sling is more appropriate if you plan to use public transportation.
- Passengers: Move to the rear of the bus and exit the rear door whenever possible. It really does make things more comfortable and efficient for everyone. Really! Oh, and if you’re one of those people who sits on the aisle with an empty space by the window, knock it off already, that’s totally selfish!
- The MBTA: In my experience, more often than not the 66 bus gets packed with passengers, forcing people to stand in the stairwells and otherwise having no room to breathe. This should be a clue that perhaps buses should run more frequently and/or double-length buses (like the ones used on route 39) should be used on this route. In my dreams, I’d actually like to see this bus replaced by a trolley or rapid transit, but that’s not likely to happen anytime soon.