Vae Viator21

Institutional???, ummm, I forget♪

Well, it's “Institutional Memory” but who could expect the LACMTA to have it?  Had they remembered, they could have saved a small fortune on installing their expensive NextBus, err, NexTrip signs at bus stops.   

 They could have used what this Mole calls “Snoble Stickers”   (Please see photo above) which were installed and soon made obsolete by schedule changes, all during Snoble's reign.  Your Mole believes that when the world ends these things, in addition to cockroaches will be the only surviving artifacts.

 So they not only wasted taxpayers money on their NextBus-NexTrip fiasco, they wasted too much money.  Keeping in mind that no service improvements will result from any of the expenditure, and even if they did, those improvments could very likely be a achieved in a more direct and cost effective manner, e.g., using the on-board, GPS, passenger counters and etc. to improve routing/scheduling.  All this waste of tax dollars is what la Taupe rightfully callsTaxation without Transportation”.

The last time, (Please see my: 2011-08-30 post), I rode a Metro bus from Wilshire BL up Fairfax I reported on the illogical and dangerous placement of the Regular and Rapid Bus stops on Fairfax.  It turns out that someone in the organisation can read and does read your Mole's blog.  I arrive at that conclusion because about a month or so ago the stops for regular and “Rapid”, limited express buses now share stops.  Although la Taupe has never received a direct “Thank You”, his inherent politeness forces him to say “You're Welcome, I think.”

thème Sainte Jeanne d'Arc (1412-06-01 ~ 1431-01-30)

   [Enter boldly among the English!]

The Mole reads the papers and other things, obviating the necessity of your doing so.

A short article Daily News (Associated Press) has a headline which tells the story 9 injured in Blue Line train crash with car in LA”. It is reported that all injuries were minor.


The time for implementing the access control gates must be near because a LACMTA brochure (It's time to TAP”) is available.  It begins with the notice “We're now testing locked turnstiles.”  It does not explain, although there is, as usual, lots of white space left, in a straightforward manner that: Turnstiles will be locked and passengers must tap a valid TAP Card in order to enter or exit [Mole].”  They also omit the important caution to be patient and courteous when faced with opposing traffic caused by the bidirectional gates.   The photo above is of the West side entry at Aviation Station on the Green Line, you will notice that there are only two gates in this direction for this busy station.

And, they forgot to indicate that TAP cards can be purchased and loaded on buses.  The usual second rate Marketing Department work? ¡Claro!  Su Topo plans a trip out of town for the early weeks of access control gate operation until the LACMTA figures out what they have done wrong and attempts to “band aid” it.  

The photo below is of the East side entry at Aviation Station on the Green Line, just picture this cuello de botella at a typical rush hour, that act of visualation is somthing the the LACMTA is incapable of doing.  Oh, and there are many of these bottlenecks scattered throughout the poorly designed system. 


¿Musica?  Feliz Navidad (bilingüe)

AND Joyeux Noël

provided by our friends at www.grooveshark.com .

Ear to the Rail 

Our Mayor reported that the Expo Line is in the process of testing and testing.  It sort of makes one wonder what they have found wrong at this late date. doesn’t it?


 A Scientific American piece, (online: http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/2011/07/28/physicists-simulate-the-end-of-time-in-a-maryland-lab/ ) describes how the end of time might mean the end of motion.  Yes, it is stranger than you think and much stranger than we are able to think; but interesting. 

Your Mole also read more about the big rip where it would be possible for someone, at the unfortunate moment, to stand in front of a mirror and watch himself dematerialise.

 The Mole Rides Again, so you don’t have to think about reminding people that they have the right to remain silent.

(All times are expressed in the 24 hour system.)

2011-11-02, 11:00 @ the 183rd Street Blue Line Station: A woman paces the platform talking on her cell.  It is difficult for this Mole to determine whether she is rehearsing a “rap” or having an actual conversation.  She seems to be including too little profanity for the one and too much for the other.  My Long Beach bound train crawls past crews working along the line and keeps the slow pace after passing them for no apparent reason.

2011-11-07 7:35: I ride a CCMBL number 6.  It is driven by operator number 5 who is both a typical and an atypical CCMBL driver.  Typical in that he is a skilled driver.  Atypical in that he is talking non-stop with a passenger who is seated in the front of the bus.  He is carrying on this conversation so that everyone on the bus can easily hear it.  Part of the conversation involves partying and a trip to Atlanta.  I have got to get out of L.A. ... the real estate agent told me that it was not a million dollar neighbourhood, more like $200K ... you could walk from there to Holyfield's home” and on and on; he just couldn't shut up.

2011-11-09 9:00:  Aboard a 117 Line bus, east bound on Century BL:  Three rows ahead of me a man and a woman carry on a conversation in sign language.  Su Topo is amazed at the rapidity of the conversation especially when BOTH seem to be signing simultaneously!  A radio plays Conjunto fairly quietly, it against Metro rules, but nice :-).

Through the window one can see a man pushing a dog along the sidewalk with his foot.  It is some kind of play and the dog is not unhappy as he lies on his back and allows himself to be moved in this somewhat strange way. Perhaps he is just a lazy dog.


2011-11-10 12:37:  Two West bound 115 Line buses pass each other, one

is a Block 5 bus, the other Block 6. This means that the Block

5 bus is about an half-hour late. The Block 5 bus with a destination more convenient to me passes me by and I ride the less convenient Block 6 bus.

2011-11-14 about 14:00:  I board a Line 4 bus headed West behind two women, they are ESL students who don't share a native language and carry on a painfully slow conversation in English.

2011-11-17 @ 6:25: “It is not the cold weather that gets you it's the wind.” The cell phone conversation continues, loudly. It makes me wonder why playing radios are forbidden on board Metro buses by lengthy, loud, inane cell call are permitted.  It is time to forbid them except in verifiable emergencies.  Texting could be permitted, IF the key click noises are muted. 

A surprising number of LACMTA passengers have, apparently, nothing better to do than carry on fatuous exchanges without regard for their fellow passengers.  There should be signs aboard all Metro modes of transportation reminding them of their right to remain silent.

2011-11-17 @ 12:00:  I wait at Veteran AV and Santa Monica BL for a line 4 bus.  The stop is dirty.  The bus bench is filthy, unusable by an ordinary person.  By plan, I ride the 4 Line bus a short distance until it terminates at Sepulveda and Santa Monica.  I plan to transfer to a CCMBL number 6, but three out of four of my fellow passengers thought that the bus was headed to Santa Monica.  If you can read a headsign, thank your teachers. 


The LAXCBC seems always to be dirty, the photograph above makes it look cleaner than it is in real life. 

2011-11-29 @14:40:  Aboard a 232 Line, bus number 22056 driven by operator 71232.  He busies himself attaching a trash bag to the fare box as we drive.  After about ten (10) minutes he finally fastens his seat belt.  Mr Leahy, would you please instutite some driver standards so that these MVT contractors turn their dispatch radios DOWN! 

2011-11-30 @13:30: Aboard a Blue Line train, Car number 150A, returning from Long Beach.  The seat back on the longitudinal seat at the front right side of the car has its back torn off and stuffed down in the seat frame.  Lack of maintenance, which this Mole frequently points out, is one of the things for which the LACMTA is noterious.  Rather, they would spend money on schemes which contribute NOTHING to improved customer service, like say, "NexTrip".  Other amenities badly needed and which funds are better spent, are rest room facilities for all the major transit centers, think LAXCBC.  

I transfer to the Green Line and find a seat accross from a yound lady of 16 ~ 20, who is in the midst of a cell phone call.   Her choice of words would make an Airbourne jumpmaster blush.

At Hawthorne station I board a 740 bus.  This time I am seated across from three young ladies who are perhaps near 16.  What a difference, as they chat politely and quietly with each other.  One has a teddy bear wih a Santa Claus hat :-).

From your Mole, to all who see this in hopes that you had/will have a:

¡Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Joyeux Noël et Bonne Année!

Fare Box Score Box and related Lists of Shame

I.D. Numbers of buses with Outs of Order Fare Boxes: 8101;

Note: No or few entries above do not necessarily mean all fare boxes are in operation. 

I.D.Numbers of Distracted Drivers: 28167 (iii), Driving while functioning as a preacher;

None included here, but observations of a minor nature may be included in the main posting;

Codes: (i) Extended conversation(s) with passenger(s) or (ii) cell phone call(s).  Frequently, details can be found in the text above, (ii*) cell phone call(s) which are aggravated by some other action, (iii) Self-distracted.  Codes (ii*) and (iii)  will ALWAYS be explained in the posting.

I.D. Numbers of Buses Defaced by WhoIs stickers: xxxx;

~UR or +UR = (+UR) whois sticker and the ugly residue left after passengers partly remove the sticker. (~UR) = Only the ugly residue left after passengers almost completely remove the sticker. +L = an old (legacy) sticker black letters on a plain white background these are the original form of defacement.

* Another reason for displaying the operator's ID on the internal display and the headsign.

ID numbers of Buses whose Head and Tailsigns disagree: xxxx      ;

Format is Bus number followed by Headsign number/Tailsign number.

ID numbers of Buses without Braille signs: XXXX;

METRO drivers Basic Technical Skills Report

The format is Driver number F[{Y/-n/+n} C[{Y/N+/-}].  Meaning of F if Y the driver stopped with the Bus stop “flag pole” somewhere between the bus front door frame.  A negative number, e.g., -3 is the approximate distance in metres (think yards dear readers) between the nearest bus door vertical frame member and the flag pole signifying that the bus stopped short of the flag.   A positive number, e.g., +3 (metres) is the approximate distance between the nearest bus door vertical frame member and the flag pole signifying that the bus stopped past the flag.    The value for C[{Y/N}], “Y” tells us that the driver stopped within an easy step from the curb to the bus, “N” means it was NOT an easy step from the curb to the bus.   It is this Mole's belief that an average experienced good driver should be able to control his bus so as to position in near the curb and with the flag pole slightly to the front of the bus.  

21544 F[Y] C[+1]; 58010 F[Y], C[+1.3]; 75238 F[Y], C[+1]; xxxxx F[+], C[];  N.B. distances are in metres, think yards.

nnnnn* = Contract Driver

I.D. numbers of drivers who are almost guaranteed to give you a Rough and Jerky (R & J) ride.  xxxxx;

I.D. numbers of drivers who will give you a potentially life-threatening ride.  XXXXX(-); XXXXX(-);

Codes: S = not wearing seat belts; J = bad judgment (unsafe driving practices).

La Taupe's Abréviations

ADADO = Automatic Destination Announcement (on) Door Opening. This feature is installed on many buses and operates on extremely few.  Another “money down the toilet” LACMTA investment.  La Taupe that this is intended for the visually impaired because people who can see can read the “head signs”.

ASAS = Automatic Stop Announcement System the GPS (Global Positioning System) driven mechanism for generating audio for the upcoming stops. N.B. Because of the low power (read weak) processors used in the on-board stops may be too close to identify stops separately.  This is known as a granularity problem.  Then too, if the driver operates the bus at speed above the speed limit you will find the system back announcing stops which you have already passed.  I find that this will NOT keep some drivers from complaining that you didnt signal (ring) in time.  They dont understand their relationship to the system and how, by driving faster than the GPS computer, they can bias it.

BBB = Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus

CC or CCMBL = Culver City (Municipal) Bus (Lines)

CCTC = Culver City Transportation Center this is the place formerly known as FHMTC = the Fox Hills Mall Transportation Center (Sepulveda & Slauson)

FFE = Full Fare Equivalent (presently $1.50)

GMBL = Gardena Municipal Bus lines

LAXCBC = the LAX City Bus Center.

OCTA = Orange County Transportation Authority.

Rapid Transit = does not compete for right of way, that is, it will not run at grade unless it has EXCLUSIVE DEDICATED USE of the right of way).

R & J = Rough and Jerky [ride].

TT = Torrance Transit.

T1 = the normal type of driver/staff.

T2 = is the non-stop talker type of driver/staff, on the phone or to passengers,

T3 = the uncommunicative type of driver/staff, sometimes surly.

WLATC = the West Los Angeles Transportation Center (Fairfax & Apple)

Su Topo’s Disclaimer and apologia

Your Mole always attempts to write an easy-on-the-eyes page using text input.  Blogger.com however, has other ideas and will often not stay with a single font type or point size, produces extraneous spacing and etc.  I wish I had time to debug the HTML which they produce, it is NOT the straight text which I pasted into the form, but I don’t.  Therefore, I apologize on behalf of Blogger.com for the changes which they make, of which I do not approve.  Sometimes, what I see, thankfully you don’t, is 24 point type –it is giant and other times they swallow my text, although it still seems to be there.  In fairness to them, things seem better, although this is partly because I do understand which of their “features” do the most damage to me and consequently do not use them.  Communicating these problems to them, for me, is something like having teeth extracted without the benefit of anesthetic, actually it is less fun than that.  By their design, there is no simple e-mailing them with "Please look at my say, posting of 2009-06-28, it is weird!” I am hoping that one of their developers will someday read this, copy my code and improve their text to HTML engine.  Until then, lo siento.

Mole’s Copyright Statement

All photographs and original written materials are copyrighted © 2007~2009 by LAmetroMole.  ♪Clicking a photo will often* present you with an enlargement (sometimes successive clicks will further enlarge the photo). *This feature is dependent upon the Internet browser which you use and possibly other factors.


This site contains or provides links to copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, sustainable development, environmental, community and worker health, public disclosure, corporate accountability, and etc. We have often included relatively brief quotes from articles and etc., sometimes in addition to a simple link, because we have found that links frequently go "bad" or change over time. We believe this constitutes a "fair use" of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without fee or payment of any kind to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes and to those who access the site via any and all other channels. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. Music or other recorded material on this site, or referred to by this site are copyrighted by their respective artists and are made available here for evaluation purposes only. Please support the artists you like by buying their commercial CDs, MP3s and downloads.

Your Mole’s Conflict of Interest Statement

This  is to certify that I, the blogger who is known as the LAmetroMole, with respect to this blog, except as described below, am not now nor at any time during the past year have been, nor it my current intention to ever be:

1) A participant, directly or indirectly, in any arrangement, agreement, investment, or other activity with any vendor, supplier, or other party doing business with any of the entities about which I have written, which has resulted or could result in personal benefit to me.

2) A recipient, directly or indirectly, of any salary payments or loans or gifts of any kind or any free service or discounts or other fees from or on behalf of any person or organization engaged in any transaction with any of the entities about which I have written. 

Any exceptions to 1 or 2 above are stated below with a full description of the transactions and of the interest, whether direct or indirect, which I have (or have had during the past year) in the persons or organizations having transactions with any of the entities about which I have written.

There are no exceptions.

Date: 2009-06-24                  S/LametroMole   

Works Cited

 (Associated Press). 9 injured in Blue Line train crash with car in LA”. www.dailynews.com. Nov. 25, 2011. WEB.

It’s Time to TAP”. Metro Brochure . 12-0121IJL © LACMTA 2011. PRINT.

### ..  . ### 


The above is  ### 30 ###  in Braille

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