I got very, very annoying_service from the TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) subway when I was trying to get home from Sheppard Station. On the southbound line, at about 7:51 pm, a subway was passing through. Perfect, usually I have to wait for five minutes for a subway nowadays at least because it seems they don't do enough maintenance on the lines so there are many, many delays. (and the new buses can't handle the cold or tall people but that is another rant for later).
So I wait on the side for people to get off first. The rule is, you wait on the side out of the way while the doors open, the people step out and you go in. Doors close. IDK if that makes any sense, but it's really inconvenient for people to get on while you're trying to get off, so I wait patiently for everyone to get off and then I get on. We're also not supposed to "rush the doors, but wait for the next train" as they announce this every single day several times over the PA system.
Anyway. Three tall, black guys get off. They aren't moving slowly, but at a normal male pace. (as in, not walking "gangsta style" all slow). They all get off and... the doors close. (ETA I am merely describing the guys because I remember, plz not to be saying I'm racist. Actually they weren't bad looking either but that was from me looking at them for half a second)
I yelled a very loud "fuck". I hate when that happens because I feel like I am being punished for obeying a rule that the TTC has always had: waiting for people to get off FIRST.
I am still annoyed. This service isn't cheap, either. At least the next subway was there in about five minutes.
The National Gallery, on the kind of cold wet sunday afternoon that London specialises in, is buzzing with crowds. The Gallery probably does more business in its shops, restaurants, and help desks on a Sunday than on any other day - and of course the great art is also attracting appreciative hordes.
But I have a specific aim - to buy a ticket for a lecture in March. So I approach the section of the Information desk labeled "Information and Advance Tickets", behind which stands a delightful, softly spoken young lady of Eastern European origin. She has a pile of brochures, a computer terminal and a Van Gogh Calendar tacked to the wall beside her.
Me: Hello. I'd like to book a ticket for Andrew Graham-Dixon's lecture on the Sistine Chapel on March 20, please.
The NG assistant reaches uncertainly for a brochure.
Me: It's probably not in the brochure - it's just been rescheduled from January in a larger theatre...
She pauses, then continues to flick through the brochure with a puzzled expression. Then she points to the page for January.
NG Assistant: It is passed. It was last week.
Me: It was cancelled and rescheduled for March 20...
She moves, not to the computer terminal but to the Wall Calendar, and checks a penciled entry.
NG Assistant: It is sold out.
Me: Are you sure?
NG Assistant: Not really. (peers at the calendar). It might be something else that week that is sold out.
Me: (Looking at computer terminal) Can you check?
NG Assistant: Not really.
Me: Is it on the system?
NG Assistant: (stares at computer terminal with tredidation, but does approach it) I don't know.
Me: How can I check?
NG Assistant: I don't know...
Me: Could I try to buy a ticket on-line tomorrow?
NG Assistant: I don't know... I will check
She picks up the brochure again, and flicks uncertainly through the last few pages. I have time to glance down at the "comments" book on the counter. One entry leaps out. "Customer Assistants who know how to use the computer system and can sell tickets would be a huge improvement".
She is still unable to find the information about in-line booking. I give up.
Me: It's alright. I'll try from home. Thank you.
I take a copy of the brochure and wave it reassuringly as I back away.
When I glance back she is still standing sadly behind the sign "Information and Advance Tickets".
I live in a small city for school, where hourly, shitty busses are the only way to get around. It's also in Northern Canada, so right now it's very cold(today was -37C before wind chill), which makes waiting for the busses painful.
The door to my college is about 30-35ft from the bus stop, and according to the school security staff(whom we asked about bus routines and etiquette after what happened), in the winter, it's the norm for students to wait inside for the busses to stop at the corner, at which point we go outside to board. The bus drivers usually understand this, and have no problem waiting for all of 10 seconds for students to run out and get in.
Today we had someone different. A few kids were out waiting by the stop instead of inside, and when the bus started to pull up(10 minutes late, but that's totally normal), the rest of us ran out to meet it. The kids who'd been waiting got in, as the rest of us started to line up, at which point the driver closed the doors in front of a my friend BJ's face and gave us a "No, sorry" brush-off wave, before driving off in an almost entirely empty bus(out of 30 seats, maybe 5-6 were full, including the four kids who had been outside).
The busses come once an hour, but it was the end of the school day(last class ends at 5:30, school closes at 6), so about 20 minutes into our wait, the doors were closed by security and we had to wait outside.
And that's my shitty service for today.
One of the guys in my program suggested we write a letter, but I don't know if that'll do anything. Thoughts? I mean, besides not being on time, today was actually a danger to our health, rather then just the usual inconvenience.