Chicago Sun-Times

Need to vent?

| 21 Comments | No TrackBacks

Borrowing a page from my hometown newspaper, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, I thought I'd create a space on my blog where transit riders can speak their mind about the CTA, Metra and Pace.

Feel free to write what you want, but keep in mind that I can't post comments with profanity. (I work for a family newspaper after all...most days, anyway.)

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL:


Why doesn't the CTA have scheduled express trains running nonstop to Ohare Airport?


Designate the first two cars for passanger with luggage.

This is for people who sit next to you and when there is a seat empty, they stay seated with you: TAKE IT. Some people have a lot of bags with them and they want to get off with no trouble. Or they feel crushed when you sit with them and they want some comfort back.

THE NUMBER 143--Habitually the driver will let people off at Randolph on the northwest corner of Michigan (and Randolph). When did the southwest corner of Michigan and Randolph get renamed Michigan and Washington. I want to be let out on the northwest corner of Michigan and Washington NOT the southwest corner of Michigan and Randolph. One of these days, I think the drivers and I are really going to have more than a heated exchange about this.

For those with book bags, shopping bags and other items in the seat next to them, ask them nicely to let you have the seat, and proceed hurriedly as if you are about to sit on them. (There is a trick to this, learn it!) This is not aggressive behavior this is called "I PAID MY FARE AND I WANT TO SIT DOWN TOO!"...I had a woman put her little perfume bag in the seat and did not want anyone to sit next to her. Mind you not her purse, but this flimsy paper bag that ladies use for whatever. Women know what I am talking about. I picked it up and gave it to her, or more or less put in her lap. There have been TOO MANY CONFRONTATIONS with men over a seat. I am starting to think there is a Hell of a lot more gay men out here than before. Why would any man think, another man wants to sit down next to their oogly butt when you simply tired and want to sit any where? I try to stand up, but damn that, people bumping into you, bus swaying, people pick-pocketing and all types of shenanigans going on. I AM GOING TO SIT DOWN SOME WHERE IF THERE IS AN OPEN SEAT!!...Just do not cough and breathe on me and we will get home peacefully.

As of right now there is nothing a person can do about the proliferation of cell phones, walk-mans and even portable DVD players I see people with. Unfortunately we are rude people and niceness does not cut it. Beggars, con men, fake preachers, and bootleg salesmen come with the territory, until CTA cracks down on all this silliness or you can afford a car, get into survival mode.

After what Huberman did at City Hall, I'm pretty sure he can do anything. If he can't fix the CTA than nobody in the world can.

Hi. Upon hearing of the beginning of the Ron Huberman era I said some stuff under my breath. But I'll just say the clean stuff: "Whatever. Who cares?" Really, what difference does it make to me, I said to my boyfriend when he called and gave me the news. Maybe Frank Kreusi is going away because somebody around here is calling for his head and he has to go on the Witness Protection Program or something. I hope Huberman can show us some positive proof because otherwise he'll be the next victim.

People deserve accountable government in this city that is focused on quality of life. Rather than focusing on 2016, we should focus on serving the people of this city with reliable transportation and growing our economy via startups like the west coast and east coast.

Let me introduce you to our next way of City Hall and the CTA, I gove you......

So, I had an appointment downtown today at 10am. I know from missing an interview a week ago (because of no parking) that I should leave earlier. I ATTEMPTED to find parking along the orange line starting at 7am, not thrilled to be 2 hours early... Not until 8:30, did I find a spot halfway downtown (I started at Midway) on Archer in a spot I wasn't too sure wasn't a tow zone because the sign was tricky. Thankfully, all went well. But seriously - WHY CAN'T NORMAL PEOPLE WHO NEED TO DO BUSINESS DOWNTOWN FIND PARKING...EVER?!?! There should be a bigger lot or a section for people who don't work there but NEED TO PARK TOO!!! CTA stinks..but, keep raising those rates.

My wife was riding a crowded blue line back from O'Hare around noon on a weekday. She looked around, and a seat across and a seat over from her, there was a man masturbating in broad daylight. We don't take the CTA anymore.

We still have problems with the RED LINE going south & the GREEN LINE going south-east/west in 2007). Also, bus service is subpar if it can be called that? WE HAVE GIVEN UP ON COMPLAINING BECAUSE WE KNOW IT WILL NOT CHANGE anything!! It will change when people such as yourself, speak for this side of town as well.

The poor are not lab rats to conjure up ill-conceived plans to implement upon.

Your retort gives credence you understand what the less fortunate were stating in their posts about the difference in how services are dispensed throughout Chicagoland.

Take for instance, something as simple as the overhead heating lamps are still on in certain communities. They were turned on before November 1st and still on as of April 9th....*sheesh*

For the Brown, Purple, Red and other colors of the rainbow complainers who can not seem to find their way around Chicago; This is an example of what I MUST DO TO GET WHERE I AM GOING!! I take a bus eastward, and Red line northward to get to the downtown(loop area). On the return trip, I take the Orange line going south-west and a different numbered bus back southward to get home.

This is called CTA = Change Transit Anytime ( if you want to get home in a relatively decent time frame) NOT the Compromise Transfer Aloofness system.

Instead of complaining find different ways to get home, and that goes for you to Ms. Thomas.

Why is the CTA trying to kill people at 63rd and Cottage Grove? Ever since they killed the Stony Island stop (stupid as that was), Cottage Grove has been the end of the line. Now what this means to people who transfer to the Green Line off of a north bound No. 4 is that the have to get off the bus at the the bottom of stairs that lead only to locked gates and have to run across 63rd Street to catch a train the bus driver had no idea existed (or they would schedule the busses better to get to the trains). If they require special access, they have to cross 63rd and Cottage to get to the elevator.

It is not like the foot of the stairs is at the corner, besides running up the stairs, you also have to run a quarter of a block between the bus stop and the bottom of the stairs that lead to an actual entrance, oddly by that time the bus has passed you.

They could just move the damned stop across 63rd Street to the train entrance, but I think they are waiting for someone to file a suit after getting hit by a car when trying to make a train.

A couple of points: I wasn’t running to the defense of the CTA. Some of the people who commented asked why the CTA didn’t shut down the Brown Line like they did the Green Line. I passed along the explanation given by the CTA. Whether or not you believe it is up to you.

Two, I may respond to your comments from time to time, but that isn’t me “putting my foot on your neck," as you put it. Sorry you took it that way.

Three, you’re right. I wasn’t here during the Green Line mess and can’t speak directly to what riders experienced. That’s what this blog is for, so you and other transit riders can speak your mind. I hope you keep it up, but for the record, my name is Monifa, not “sugar,” “honey,” “darling” or “girlfriend.”

Excuse me sista girl, but you do not obviously understand the headaches the Southsiders went through on the Red Line going south of Roosevelt Road and the Green Line on the South and East Sides of Chicago?

How dare you come here and defend an organization which during the election of the first Black Mayor had the audacity to slow the trains down going to the South and West sides, so Black people couldn't go home to vote. BUT THEY MADE DAMN SURE THEY WENT TO THE NORTH SIDE!!

Girlfriend, you do not know about the snow storms which hit Chicago in previous years, but service was still fine and dandy to WHITE communities, but lacking in the poorer communities. WE DO GO TO WORK, just like you darling.

Sugar, you need to go back to Georgia, because it is quite apparent you are here with phoney Southern Hospitality.

Well we Northen Brothas and Sistas have jobs to go to. We dealt with the crap of closing stations, cutting bus service & in some cases even shutting down the routes in our communites. WE DEALT WITH IT!!

CTA, RTA, and any other "TA" knew exactly where to cut service to appease those people using the BROWN, PURPLE, YELLOW, and any other tutti-frutti colors they come up with.

Get your damn foot off our necks when we vent. Do not ask us to vent if you are not willing to stand aside and let it be done without jumping to the defense of the privilege. Where was your high and mighty butt when problems were aplenty on the South and West sides of Chicago?

Miss Monifa Comment: To those of you who noted that the Green Line was completely shut down a few years back, apparently the CTA wasn't looking to make the same mistake twice with the Brown Line.

My Comment: In actuality, they didn't give a damn either about the prospect of what will happen if services were cut to the bare bones, and leave people(poorest who needs it most) walking four to six blocks, and waiting over twenty-five minutes for buses either to find ways around their crappy decisions. We ARE NOT LAB RATS to be tested on!!...Are you feeling me honey!?

Miss Monifa Comment: CTA officials said it was because the CTA had lost all of its Green Line riders by the time those stations reopened!

My Comment: Why in the hell would you close all of them but NOT increase bus service to those areas? No lady, they decrease all the service. Go take a look at the archives of the history of CTA station and bus routes before you decided to visit our lovely one-sided (lets please the hell out of some and screw the rest) city; then make your judgement! I am tired of you Jane & John Doe's come lately trying to take up for something you know nothing about!!

No we are not supposed to jump and down when it finally comes back! And go rushing "Oh Lord CTA is back!"...

To those of you who noted that the Green Line was completely shut down a few years back, apparently the CTA wasn't looking to make the same mistake twice with the Brown Line.

When asked why they didn't want to close key Brown Line stations for two years instead of doing the three-track service reductions, CTA officials said it was because the CTA had lost all of its Green Line riders by the time those stations reopened. The fact that it took about two years to get those people back was probably incentive enough for the CTA not to go down that road again.

Every morning I ride the Metra Northwest line train number 606, which arrives downtown at 7:02AM (if it's on time). Each morning this week the train has been packed to the gills, standing room only, because someone at the Metra corporate offices decided to remove one of the train cars. This train is normally at full capacity, and many of the riders boarding at the later stops are forced to stand. I believe that at some stops passengers were not allowed to board because there simply was no room.

I have had several knee surgeries, so standing the entire ride in on a rocky train in one spot is particularly difficult and painful. But I believe that no one should really have to deal with that kind of commute.

According to the conductor, who is quite upset about this and urged everyone to call Metra's headquarters, this situation will continue on a permanent basis until one of the corporate big-wigs comes to their senses. I called Metra three times this week and was assured that I would receive a call back from a supervisor to address my concerns. However, not suprisingly, my calls were not returned.

how come the mayor is completely ignoring the CTA/RTA situation as if it is some kind of other world problem? and as for Joe Moore-nice try but a bit tooooo late. it is clear that your posting is about political rhetoric. here is a tip, if you really want to invoke change-ACT earlier. DO something.
Your eleventh hour heroism is vacuous-EMPTY. Get real and quit insulting your constituents with your obvious meaningless rhetoric. it is old and boring and impotent.

Why all the whoop-de-do about Brown line riders being inconvenienced for a while? When the Green line was totally shut down for a year, causing as much if not more inconvenience for south siders, there was hardly a peep heard from the media or the cta.

As for riders who decide to switch to Metra, welcome to heaven! No impromptu sermons or pleas for food from "homeless" people; no people selling cd's;socks;fruit bags;cookies, etc. No surly drivers with snotty attitudes. No chicken bones,pop cans, french fry bags on the floor. No roaches crawling on the back of your seat.

Everyone who stays on the North side is making such a big stink about the Brown Line reconstruction. Oh what short memories we have. Back in 1993 when it was made public that the Green Line would be shut down for TWO FREAKING YEARS due to reconstruction, the CTA basically ignored calls from the community to keep the line running during construction. We were told that it would cost too much to keep it running and take too long for the necessary repairs. So for TWO YEARS, people on the south and west sides had to do without rapid transit service.

Lets fast forward to 2007, the start of Brown Line construction. I say to those riders on the North Side to SHUT UP!!!! The CTA didn't have the stones to do to Brown, Red, & Purple Line riders what they did to Green Line riders, shut it down for years for the sake of time and money. At least you still have train service, albeit slower. So just shut up and either get up a little earlier and ride the train or choose from one of many bus routes within a 3 block area.

I got in a Red Line car yesterday and it was totally filthy, trash everywhere, food, chicken bones. Absolutely filthy. I know the conductors or CA don't have time to clean at the end of the line - or do they? At the Howard line they have a clean up crew go through and collect trash. How's this for a novel idea? Put trash cans in the cars. If people had a receptacle to put their trash they would use it. They have trash cans on the Pace buses, and it helps. These are not HUGE CANS but clip on cans. At the end of the line, the CA could empty the can (assume it has a plastic bag) and change bags.
How much does it cost to get a clip on trash can?

1.I ride the Green Line daily to and from work(jokingly called the "Soul Train")and we need more cars added or more frequent stops. The train is full by the time it reaches Central.

2.I think it might aid in passenger courtesy if you would put up more signs sharing, hinting at what would be good train/bus riding behavior. I am so tired of gum popping( don't even look annoyed at perpetrator,they will pop more frequent and louder), loud music emanating from ear phones, being hit on the head with backpacks and I won't go there with the noise/profanity/ill mannered young people (you did say to vent didn't you?) This morning a guy sat and changed his socks..Jeeze..I know you cannot go back and hometrain these people, but maybe a little illumination on the problem will aid in its surcease. Did I mention the chirp phones and just cellular phone usage in general...Do these people really think others want to hear all their personal goings on?
3. Could they possibly clean out trains more often..corner spots most often smell of urine. In the summer there are cockroaches!!
I will not list anything else as just thinking of these is giving me a headache, Thanks for listening. Oh wait..I gotta tell you one more:
4. The pidgeon droppings all over the downtown train stations and the poor roofing that causes you to get wetter inside when raining than out. Not to mention that people hark up phlegm and spit it on station flooring and steps!!! yuck!

Leave a comment

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Monifa Thomas published on March 29, 2007 10:00 AM.

What's your three-track game plan? was the previous entry in this blog.

Your three-track experience is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.