If you like, you can skip to the end of this post to answer the “thank you” poll.
Results from last poll: best ways to pass time on transit
Here’s the results of the last poll, which asked everyone what’s the best way to pass the time on transit?
We got 195 votes on this poll (a new record!) and listening to an iPod/music player was the most popular answer, with 32 per cent of the vote. Looking out the window (22%) and reading (20%) were second and third.
It also seemed that a lot of you enjoy people watching (11%) and sleeping (8%)! Meditating (4%) and “other” (3%) brought up the rear.
In the comments, most people said they do a mix all of the options when they’re on transit. Here’s a comment from Gennifer:
I actually do just about everything on that list. I like grabbing a 24 Hours and a Metro before I get on the train. While I read, I listen to my iPod. Then when I finish my papers I people watch/wave at the little kids and look out the window. But if I’m on the train and I am tired, I will put my head down and go to sleep. I have ridden past my stop about three times.
And Betty moved from one method to another for passing time on the bus:
I used to read a lot on the bus. Now, I usually look out the window and think about things. When I feel like using my brain I do the puzzles in the free newspapers. I’m surprised I’m in a minority because I do see other people doing the puzzles (sometimes in ink, even — I’m a pencil puzzler).
I also got some flak for not mentioning BlackBerries or other mobile devices. Catching up with email and RSS feeds seemed to be a popular option for passing the time. Here’s JasonV:
Ok, I’ve been reading my fav RSS feeds on a PalmPilot while on transit for YEARS! And for FREE! (the Palm was a hand-me-down, and Avantgo.com made subscribing to any RSS feed simple!) I STILL recommend this technique!
Then I upgraded to the iPod TOUCH for free wifi-bility! And best of all, offline browsing! Add the little app ByLine for a few bucks and you can nearly replicate Avantgo’s service, but via Google Reader! What’s great is you can fav and comment on posts while offline, and then when you get home and resync, your comments/favs/shared posts get synched to Google Reader without any effort at all! You can also start to see other recommended shared items from friends if you choose to follow shared items from your contacts!
And by the way, when it came to good podcasts for passing time on transit, Jason suggested The Moth storytelling podcast. As mentioned, I also think This American Life is excellent bus fodder. If you have more suggestions for music/podcasts for transit, let me know — maybe I can put a list together for everyone in the future!
This week’s poll: saying thank you to your operator
For the new poll, bear in mind that I’m asking what you do on an average trip, not the best or worst trips!
I hear it sometimes on buses and sometimes not, so I’m curious about the results! Plus, does anyone have a particular strategy they use when deciding to shout out thanks? Informal chats with my coworkers have turned up very inconsistent approaches: one colleague doesn’t like to say “thank you” if another passenger has already said it — and often I don’t say it unless somebody else has broken the ice already :)