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Thursday fun poll: what’s the best way to pass time on transit?

Since we all have the day off tomorrow, the weekly poll is a day early today!

Last week I asked if you had ever talked to your crush on transit.

There was a fairly low turnout for this one, with just 67 people weighing in on the matter. The vast majority (84%) said no, and the rest said yes (16%). (Do you like how I got the pie chart to split, btw?)

Also, while there were only three comments on this poll, they were all still quite fun. From LisaB:

A happy little story – my friend just married her bus-crush. So sometimes it pays off to chat up your bus buddy!

And Donald Nguyen had some success too!

Oh transit crushes, had a many, talked to none, didn’t think the typical woman would appreciate being hit on during their commute! Although I did write to I Saw You on the Georgia Straight and low and behold she responded! We just had one date but it was nice regardless.


On to a new poll now!

If you picked the “iPod/music player” option, care to share what makes for a good transit playlist? I personally think podcasts and radio shows are great for transit: This American Life is particularly terrific :)


  • By Dan B, April 9, 2009 @ 5:52 pm

    When travelling alone, reading is the best way of passing time — the sole exception being sleeping, for those that can manage it. Whereas music only provides a partial distraction, reading something engaging or stimulating such as The Economist or The Globe and Mail (editorial pages and political columns only) sometimes engages me too much — one time, while reading an editorial, I became so engrossed with the topic that I missed my stop!

    Sometimes, though, when I don’t feel like reading, I’ll listen to some classic rock or 80s music. Lucky for me, the volume on my headphones goes to eleven.

  • By Gennifer, April 9, 2009 @ 6:10 pm

    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.

  • By Masaki, April 9, 2009 @ 6:50 pm

    I always have my iPod with me, but I too do just about everything on that list besides meditating and people watching. Sleeping is easier to accomplish when you’re on a coach bus. I rarely read when I take transit but if I do it’s not a newspaper, it’s more likely to be a novel.

  • By ;-), April 9, 2009 @ 7:01 pm

    I voted other. I’m surprised you didn’t list Blackberry. I start my workday responding to emails and getting a regular dosage of this blog. With data plans now $25 a month (less than a dollar a day), this is getting real addictive.

    Jhenifer, perhaps you should get one of these things. That way you can keep in touch with all your new friends nearly whereever you are in the world. Mine worked great in Hawaii!

  • By Eric, April 10, 2009 @ 10:53 pm

    If there’s an “All of the above” button, I’d select that. I’m sure I have done all of those activities on a single 20-minute bus ride!

  • By Bryan, April 12, 2009 @ 6:04 pm

    Whenever i travel alone I’ll always be either on my blackberry catching up on homework, or doing something else on my BlackBerry. But i also listen to my iPod at the same time, but if i finished up everything the previous night i just stare out the window and watch the world go by.

  • By C.Cassidy, April 14, 2009 @ 11:09 pm

    It can be any of the above depending on the day.

    Generally I like to read the 24 Hours and Metro newspapers (They are free), then listen to my iPod. I find AC/DC or Daft Punk to be perfect for the Skytrain, anything else is good for the bus.

    Now sometimes you might be riding on a very interesting bus, were you get some crazy guy/gal on board. Watching them can be quite entertaining, and exchanging humorous looks with other passengers is the cherry on the top!

    Sleeping is always a good option, especially on those early morning trips. Just don’t miss your stop (Which then ties in with watching people when they miss their stop).

  • By Vanessa, April 15, 2009 @ 8:14 pm

    I like to look out the window, and sometimes I can see some new places, even though I’m travelling along the same route every day! After all, anything could happen, even at the same place, and sometimes you might have just missed something.

  • By Jason V, April 16, 2009 @ 10:37 pm

    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 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!

    Furthermore, you can listen to music AND read ByLine at the same time, with an iPod Touch! Woot! As for actual music, I really liked kicking off my playlist with “The Mixed Tape” by Jack’s Mannequin while on the SkyTrain, followed by some Neko Case, Oh Susannah, and gypsy tango!

  • By Jason V, April 16, 2009 @ 10:40 pm

    pss: This American Life is great, but sooooo is the Moth Podcast! Essential addition!

  • By Betty, April 19, 2009 @ 5:50 pm

    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).

  • By ;-), April 19, 2009 @ 9:21 pm

    @Jason V

    I used to use AvantGo on my iPaq, but getting updates the night before just didn’t work for me. With BlackBerry, I now use ViiGo. Like AvantGo, it has the ability to cache my RSS feeds. Very handy when the train enters the Dunsmuir tunnel dead zone. Oh I should also add that ViiGo allows me to do updates while I moving on a bus or Skytrain at anytime! This is a great as the information is sent out at real-time for less than a $1 a day.

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