Friday, August 24, 2012

What Would Walt Do?

Disney’s customer service practices are legendary. One practice that sticks in my mind concerns upkeep of Disney theme park grounds. Imagine the horse-head hitching posts on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom getting a fresh coat of paint every night. That's what they say happens. Of course, it may be an exaggeration. But it makes the point that folks at Disney really care about atmospherics. Applying the concept to mass transit means keeping stops free of litter and clutter. Instead of taping up notices everywhere, they would be restricted to overhead panels. It means transforming interiors regularly with a fresh coat of paint, nightly scrubbing floors and seats, polishing metal and glass surfaces, and replacing rather than Duct-taping torn upholstery. Walt Disney once recalled his wife was skeptical at first about his plans to build Disneyland. Why would he want to build an amusement park, when "They're so dirty," she asked. "Mine won't be," Walt replied.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Bus to Heaven

Seven people board a Bus to Heaven. But only six of them are deemed worthy of the trip. One guy should be on the Bus to Hell because he killed someone in his real life, but snuck onto the Bus to Heaven at the Eternity Depot.

The six good people try to convince the Bus to Heaven driver to turn the bus around and go back to the Eternity Depot. But the driver says it's too risky, that Eternity routes are one-way routes and there's a chance they would all end up in Hell.

So the six good people discuss what to do with the one bad guy. He tries to defend himself, confessing that while driving drunk one day he hit a young man riding a bicycle who had lots of promise. The bad guy explains that he stopped his vehicle but got so frightened he left the scene of the accident, only to be spotted by a passing motorist.

After the six good Bus to Heaven riders weigh their options for dealing with the one bad guy, they decide to kill him.

(A play I wrote. To read the script click on "VIEW MY COMPLETE PROFILE" at "ABOUT ME" (top right) under my picture. Then select my "The Bus to Heaven" blog.)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Talk About Energy Efficiency

You won’t see this logo on any of the 234 buses the Central Ohio Transit Authority operates in its Columbus service area with 53 routes and 4,255 stop locations covering 562 square miles.

Though it would be nice if a COTA bus shared power requirements with a COTA cassette player, the real product represented by the above trademark. It operates on 2AA batteries.

Trips For Those Who Don't Ride The Bus

I announced my planned return to Columbus in a letter Columbus Monthly magazine ran in its September 2007 issue. The letter was a response to unfavorable remarks Editor Ray Paprocki made about COTA in his column. Taking COTA’s side, I asked Paprocki three questions, the first two of which aren’t likely to motivate the magazine's mostly well-educated, well-off readers to take up bus travel.

I wondered if Paprocki could use the time he felt he’d waste riding the bus to catch up on reading or sleep, and wondered if he could use the extra several hundred dollars a month he’d realize from ditching his car.

While I can’t imagine the professional people in Columbus cuddling up on a bus seat with a book or dozing off, or imagine them getting rid of their automobiles just to improve their cash positions, my third question may encourage a few to take more mass transit trips.

I asked, "Wouldn’t he (Paprocki) be proud saying he’s no longer polluting the atmosphere?” which should provoke a few ego trips.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Fill 'Er Up Buster

Today is National Dump the Pump Day.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Bus F-Stop

Who says waiting for the bus has to be boring? Get out that point-and-shoot and start shooting! Keep in mind that -- though it sounds dumb -- in some instances photogrpahing buses without permission is prohibited.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Curator of Public Transportation by John Reinier

Into the mandible
of inquisitive minds,
I drop exalted names
one predomination at a time.
Van Gogh is the first to go.
"Was he the best?" a lady
in a yellow dress wants to know.
She obviously expects a coronation,
right there on the ribbed black mat
rolled out for the famous Dutchman.
"As an artist, it's hard to say," I say.
"But as an arsonist he had no equal, ma'am.
You've never seen the sun lit
as brilliantly as he did it,
on a wheat field set afire.
Nor does the future hold much of a prospect,
that another artist will ever torch it
so thoroughly."
"But he does not detract from the others.
Edvard Munch, I have to mention...,"
"Did he have the munchies?" a small girl
-- with auburn hair and autumn landscape
for complexion -- interrupts.
"Imagine," I tell her, "a bird of prey
watching Chip and Dale at play,
at a game of tag around the barked barrel
of that tall tree right over there.
The dark bird swoops down, misses once,
but tries again, ending both chases forever.
In flight it gets disoriented by the light
reflecting from the front door of this bus,
coincidentally at the moment it opens.
With wings spread out, the bird alights
in the aisle up next to our driver,
still clutching the mortally-wounded pet,
now oozing what looks like red licorice,
a sight so twisted to your young eyes,
they twirl like pinwheel lollipops.
As you file out the back door of this bus
you let out a scream
heard around the metropolis."
"Marc Chagall never dealt
with such dreaded decorum.
His flights, instead, pure delights,
take place in an aquarium.
Figures float upward like jellyfish,
blue, or red, or green,
weightless in a welcoming sky."
"I like black-and-white pictures,"
a handmaid who's been shopping announces.
"Then you would appreciate the artistry
of the photographer, Ansel Adams.
He's the acknowledged aristocrat
of monochromatic color."
"De Kooning was an action painter."
"De Whooning was a what'd you call it?"
"Matisse blended color indiscriminately."
"My sister made a picture of me..."
"Barnett Newman was a fundamentalist.
Walker Evans, Edward Weston,
Wassily Kandinsky,
Jasper Johns, Marcel Duchamp,
Joan Miro, Paul Klee, Roy Lichtenstein,"
I list the rest in un-amalgamated order,
then listen to a small child whimper as I exit.