Friday, December 3, 2010


My recent new job has meant a new commute to get used to. It is one, however, that is far more difficult than I could have ever anticipated. My new job is in the Potrero Hill district of San Francisco, and I have to get there from the Sunset district. Sounds easy enough as it is across town and only 4.5 miles away, right? Wrong.

I have tried to use MUNI to get to work, but it is unreliable and very unpleasant. On average it takes 1.5hrs to go this distance using MUNI, and can sometimes take as long as 2hrs! That is unacceptable for a city to city trip in my opinion. People who I work with are arriving to work in less time from San Jose using Caltrain! I have tried to take the 71 or 71L to the 22 Fillmore, the N-Judah to the 22 Filmore, and my least favorite - the N-Judah to the 19 Polk. The 19 Polk may as well be called the 19 Skidrow as it is the most...colorful...bus ride in the city, filthy, and consistently smells like weed and booze at all hours.

To further complicate things, MUNI has started requiring the use of Clipper Cards to pay for transit. In a strange twist of backward technology, it takes 3 days for money deposited to the Clipper Card online to be usable on the card! So if I decide right now that I want to re-up my Clipper Card so I can go out and use it, MUNI will take my money immediately but I will not be able to use those funds for 3 days. Waiting 3 days is absurd. The bank doesn't even take that long to cash an out of state check! This must be fixed.

With all the business flourishing in Potrero Hill, you'd expect there to be more reliable public transportation to and from the neighborhood. For as long as I've been in San Francisco, Potrero Hill has been "up & coming". I believe it will remain stuck in this status (for better or for worse) for as long as the public transportation is insufficient.

It is so sad to me that there is a public transit system in this city that I cannot use. This dilemma has unfortunately forced me to ride either my motorcycle or my car to work everyday, while the trend is to use public transportation when you can. Some people have suggested I take a bicycle, but the city streets are far too dangerous in my opinion for a bike.

So much for being green.


  1. Great commentary on the absurdities of SF public transit!
    New job huh? Details please, and I'll take this answer off line. Or personal email, which ever you prefer :)
    I like the bike to work route. It's not THAT dangerous! I used to bike around London roundabouts competing for road space with London cabbies and double decker buses. Now that was suicidal BUT I'm still here!
    Plus I used to be a Critical Masser or Messer as the case may be.
    How about a neon yellow reflector vest and a bike flag pole from Santa? Ho ho ho.

  2. I guess bike to work would be good exercise but I am so concerned with time in the morning. It takes too long, and going up and over the hill and arriving all sweaty for my standing 9am meeting does not sound good. :( excuses excuses