Thursday 24 January 2013

Working in Ottawa today --Baby Blues

Good morning folks,

I will be working in Ottawa today.

Not a huge amount of time today, to be frank, I could not wake up.  This led to a late shower, even later shave, and most of you know that since I adopted the shorter coif a number of years ago, I waste no time combing hair.  But as a result, I arrived at the airport just in time to board my flight, and am really more interested in closing my eyes for a bit than writing.

But duty does call.


TTC and the anti-baby crowd.   There is much discussion amongst the governance of the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) on what to do about strollers.  Seems a rider complained that the strollers get in her way, and there should be limits on the number of strollers allowed on a bus at any given time.  Two.  And if there are already two strollers, then a mother and child(ren) will simply need to wait for the next bus.  In the rain.  Or snow.  Or 25 below.  This is the frozen north, remember?

Let's examine shall we?  Her complaint stems from a TTC that is experiencing record ridership.  Ridership, that's transit lingo for the people that ride the bus, subway, and streetcars.  With increased ridership, there is less free space on the busses, and so when a young mother boards the bus with stroller in tow there is less room for other non stroller towing riders.

But I look at it a different way.  I will assume that all riders have some legitimate need to get where they are going, daycare, work, market, doctor, who gives a damn where, and that these mothers have paid their fare..  So if we are to have riders wait for a less busy bus, let's at least make the least disadvantage by the wait, wait.   Since a child has less mass and therefore more susceptible to the evils of weather, that there be a limit on bulkier persons on the bus is case a child needs to board.  This should apply not only for babies but school children as well.  If a child is late for school, it could be recorded on their permanent record :p

How about a limit on the count of riders that need to ask the driver a question?  Let's not even get started on those with physical challenges that may need bulky wheelchairs or awkward canes or crutches.. Set Limits now!

You see the mother with stroller has no choice but to be on the bus, if she did, she would likely not be there, but she needs to get to daycare, or to the market or to school, and to counter the suggestions that she should leave the stroller at home and strap the child to her body is absurd.  Most young mothers are not members of the Olympic Weightlifting Team and would collapse from exhaustion if they were to carry child, diaper bag, groceries, books, around through their entire commute.

The TTC provides public transportation.  It is available for all.  If the buses are too crowded we already have a very simple solution that is much better than refusing passengers.  Buy more buses.  Duh.  Instead the TTC has set a review of the policies regarding strollers (currently there are none), it shouldn't even be on the table.

Damn.  We haven't pushed back yet.  Not good for the start of my day, but may mean I can close my eyes for a bit on the flight.

Have a good day, be courteous to others.


  1. Addendum to this. The plane could not be repaired. So the 8:10 will not leave. But acting quickly I called the Air Canada Concierge desk and secured a seat on the 9:10. Interesting enough, Bob Rae was in the same predicament so I gave him the Concierge phone number. They found him a business class seat and tossed me back in coach. It's all good though, a narrow seat is still better than riding out on the wing :)

  2. You could always tell Otttawa you were staying in Toronto, tell Toronto you are in Ottawa and just go back home and take a nap. :)

    1. Daniel,

      The solution is simple, at least on paper it is. We need to genetically breed smaller people. Half the normal size. What's that work out to be? That would be twice the ridership. Some clever industrial design would allow the miniature bus driver to see the road. *Clap!* Problem solved.

      Bob Rae got into business class, huh? Meanwhile our government has the audacity to expect me to pay my taxes on time, let alone at all? How rude. *Smile.*

      Barber: "The usual again, Dan?"

      Daniel: "Actually, Stan, give me something a little more streamlined. Something that says, 'That guy knows how to budget his time.'"

      Barber: "So...'same as last time? I only know one style."

      Daniel: "Tsk, I guess so."

      See you this weekend, buddy!


    2. Sharlene...that was funny as heck. *Smile.*

  3. Ah, don't begrudge him for flying up front. He flies as much as I do (happen to notice him in YOW and YYZ with some frequency) and I upgrade to biz every chance I get.

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