Bus wankers!

Ever heard the term “bus wanker”? It was a phrase coined on the brilliant Channel 4 show “The Inbetweeners” and basically relates to someone who takes the bus.

Well, I am a bus wanker.  Fully paid up to Lothian Buses with my Ridacard, I take, usually, about four buses a day, sometimes more so I should think this would make me some kind of Senior Bus Wanker.

My problem with being a bus wanker is, well, other bus wankers.  Quite frankly, they drive me nuts.  I mean, how can you stand in a bus stop for ten minutes waiting and then when the bus arrives you don’t have your (correct) change ready? What have you been doing for ten minutes? Not counting out your bus fare, that’s for sure!

Then it’s bus pass bus wankers not having their bus pass ready for action.  You’ve been standing waiting on a bus for ten minutes, why have you not got your bus pass to hand? Why do you not even know where it is? Why do you look like an octopus when you get on the bus trying to find what pocket it’s in? Why do you not just have it ready?!

Then there’s one I don’t understand.  This on the phone app thing. M-ticket.  I don’t use it, I’m old school with my bus pass, but again, why don’t you have the m-ticket ready to show the driver.  Nope, we’ve all got to sit there while you get rid of the Facebook app, wait for the Lothian Buses app to load up and then find your m-ticket.  Aye, it’s alright love, none of us have to be anywhere.

Then we have the ones that stand in the bus stop waiting on the bus but don’t have a clue about the bus fare.  How much is the bus fare? It’s not bloody difficult.  There’s lots of ways to find out while you are waiting on your bus.  Read the bus stop for example.  I would say 99% of bus stops in Edinburgh have prices on them. However, even if they didn’t, Google it! Look up the Lothian Buses website and LOOK.  There’s a whole page that tells you about the different ticketing options and the prices.

In the bus stops and on the bus and on the website it tells you that to travel on a Lothian Buses bus you have to have the correct fare.  So here comes no change bus wanker.  First of all you ask if the driver can give you change.  He cannot.  They do not have access to any of the money on the bus.  This type of bus wanker generally knows the price of a ticket but hasn’t managed to work out that the correct change is needed.  Having the correct change is not something new from Lothian Buses, as long as I have used Lothian Buses, and I’m not young, this had been a policy they have had in place.  So, no change bus wanker, you start asking people on the bus if they have change.  No one generally does.  If they do then it’s likely to be their own bus fares.  So, we wait, while you ask everyone on the bus if they have change and then you come back and tell the driver that they do not.  Uh huh, so feck off the bus then and let us get on with our journey…but no, you then spend a few moments swithering whether to just bung a fiver in for a £1.70 fare.  No pal, you’re clearly not in a rush, just get off, get change and get the next bus.  That’s the answer.

What next? Oh yes, the bus wankers who have no idea how to queue to actually wait on a bus.  I wrote a blog about this in 2013.  It still drives me nuts.  The only people allowed to skive me in a bus queue are the elderly (because they generally usher other people on before them), anyone in a wheelchair and anyone with any disability.  If someone hobbles up the front of the bus queue on crutches with a great big stookie on their leg I’m not going to nudge them out the road because they weren’t first, I’ll let them get on so that they have time to find a seat and sit down.  That doesn’t excuse the other queue bus bankers though.  In fact, they could just be queue wankers.  Whatever they are, they’re terrible.  How can you look at a queue of people and think you deserve to be ahead of them in the queue? No, get to the back. Don’t hover near the front of the queue and expect people to let you on.  Especially in bad weather.  Take your place in the queue and lump it.  You might be a high-up manager in your career but when you’re going for a bus you get yourself in the queue and you WAIT in the queue.  What do I do when someone skips the queue? I bloody tell them.  I tell them that we generally have a queuing system for a lot of things, in this case – buses.  I ask them if they were in the queue in the supermarket and someone barged ahead of them, would they be happy? Of course they wouldn’t.  So why is a bus queue any different? Stop it, get in the queue!

Many would ask why I don’t just get my driving licence and a car.  Well, I like traveling by bus.  Yes, it takes some options away like where I can work and the jobs I can go for but at the end of the day, I don’t have a car to look after.  Lothian Buses are great and their service is good.  Their drivers are nice (yes, like everywhere, there will be the odd one who isn’t).  I think the drivers cope really well in a city that is constantly having road works with diversions all over the place, that routes are diverted for rugby matches and things like that.   And, they cope with bus wankers extremely well.

Have a read and work out what kind of bus wanker you are.  Or, are you a car or bike wanker? That’s a whole two new different blogs.