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Links of Interest: This Week's MTA Torture Session, Today's Muni FailWhale Regatta, and more!

NJudah-mug-half.jpgToday was a mid-afternoon failwhale regatta, just outside my place. It seems there was a downed N Judah inbound, which created a conga line of stalled trains, and the resulting domino effect all over the place.

The irony of this, along with a string of accidents and other big ol' fails, on the eve of a vote Friday where (surprise) the MTA will vote to jack up fares and cut Muni service 10% or more, is not lost on me. Remember all those "hearings" where people poured out their hearts and their ideas to help Muni? Well they were pretty much for show, as I predicted, and the MTA could give two fraks what you or I think.

Obviously, this has many people worried, and Dave Snyder, formerly of SPUR, is organizing a new group to give you, the owner of Muni, a stronger voice. For now, they've got a temporary site at muniriders.org where you can join an email list and find out how you might get involved. I don't know a lot of the details, but as I find them out, I'll pass them on. Remember, we are the owners, but we have to act like owners now, and not just buy in to whatever snake oil interest groups or politicians peddle to us.

Speaking of spin, as we all know, the TWU operators rejected some proposed changes to pension rules and such, but it's also becoming clear that many operators didn't have the proposal explained properly to them. Several that I talked to in an informal poll basically confirmed that, and had many questions that never got answered, and regretted their vote, once they realized the effects of that vote.

To say this is the latest in a string of PR blunders for TWU would be an understatement, and the leadership didn't seem to understand the tense climate they're now operating in. That is, until I heard the news they hired Eric Jaye to provide consulting services for TWU.

Needless to say, this is important - Jaye is one of the better strategists out there, and if there's a campaign battle to be fought, well, he's one of the guys you'd want on your side and not on the others. (Full disclosure - 2 years ago I worked as a contractor for Mr. Jaye's company, but do not do so now, nor will I in the near future I'd imagine. However, having seen his work, all I can say is he's a hell of a lot smarter than I or most in that line of work).

Finally, something fun: the Inner Sunset Facebook Group folks are having one of their famous bar meet ups at Yancy's on Thursday at 8pm. These events are fun and Yancy's is literally right in front of the N outbound stop on Irving and 9th, so why not stop by if you can?

And, if you want to express your solidarity with your fellow Muni owners, why not buy one of our many products this week? Zazzle currently has a 22% discount if you buy 2 items in one order (use code TWOTWENTYTWO when checking out), and will also offer you $5 off your next order if you send in a picture of yourself with your purchased items! Check out the Zazzle.com site for details.

Comments

We were on outbound N yesterday @2:30 when driver abruptly announced the train was stopping at Hillway and shuttle buses would take over. Driver was surly and refused to say anything beyond "track blocked". The train was occupied by a combination of regulars and tourists. Of course there were no shuttle buses. A polite "sorry, it looks like a stalled train" etc. would be nice and perhaps some tips to alternates such as 43, 44, 71 etc. Another opportunity missed for a driver to show some solidarity with the riders.

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