January 29, 2012 by Rob Hurlbut · 6 Comments
San Diego Trolley Guards: Private Security or Sworn Police?
San Diego Trolley Guards think they are real police officers. Specifically, they think they are actual sworn peace officers but they aren’t; they work for Heritage Security, a private security company. What they are doing and saying in the video above they are doing as private citizens. The two arrests you see them perform in the video are citizen’s arrests. The problem I have is that the people arrested were placed in handcuffs, one because he smelled of alcohol and the other for smoking. Both of the guards also react rather rudely to my presence; one saying he would arrest me if I stand behind him while the other walks up to me and tells me to get back, then asks to see my ticket and then says to get out of his face. Unless I was standing in a 6 inch hole, there is no way I was in that guard’s face.
From my point of view, the short guard became annoyed when the fat guard made him aware of my presence. That’s when Biggie said he’d arrest me for standing behind him and Smalls checked my ticket and told me to get out of his face. I really didn’t move, so the little guy decided to go pick on a smoker that happened to light up as he was exiting 7-11. From my point of view, short-stuff was being a fucking bully. Watch the video below and pay attention to how the short guard talks to the guys after they are in cuffs. He’s a cast iron dick.
I think there is a vicious cycle going on between commuters and security guards: Commuters think most guards are assholes and guards think most commuters are degenerates. They’re both right. Most people in San Diego that ride the trolley instead of driving a car do it because they can’t afford a car or because they’ve had their license suspended; in other words, because they HAVE to. I’m part of that small green minority that’s charging ahead and riding public transportation by choice so I get to bear witness to a lot of trolley guards being assholes to a lot of stinky, stupid degenerates and I’m all for that. However, I was wearing dress pants, a collared button down shirt, a tie, impeccably shined shoes and I was holding a camera when short-stack and extra-large talked to me the way they did.
I didn’t look like nor was I acting like a degenerate when they were assholes to me. Therein lies the vicious cycle. Or maybe trolley guards really are assholes to everyone. What do you think?
Below is a video I shot and blogged about in 2009 showing four guards take a guy down for smoking, so San Diego trolley guards have had a pattern of arresting people for petty things for at least a couple years, but they are not sworn peace officers. This makes me question the necessity and the legality of the arrests because as you’ll hear in the videos, they never say they are NOT the police, but, they sure talk like the police.
January 7, 2012 by Rob Hurlbut · 3 Comments
The Grand America Plaza Trolley Station
America Plaza Trolley Station is on the West end of Broadway and downtown San Diego. If you have just landed at the San Diego Airport and intend to take a train, bus or trolley, to your ultimate destination, America Plaza or Santa Fe Depot across the street are the stations to do it. The number 992 city bus is the “airport shuttle” that you will want to familiarize yourself with online. In a nutshell, it runs west on Broadway, turns north on Harbor Drive, passes the cruise ship terminal, loops through the airport and then heads back on the same streets in the opposite direction.
Inside America Plaza
You have two trolley lines, both going two directions on two different tracks at America Plaza so you must pay attention to which train you board. In the photo above and the first photo of the post, the track in the foreground will hold the blue line trolley going north to Old Town and the orange line trolley going to Gaslamp District. The other track will hold blue lines heading south through South Bay San Diego to the Mexican Border and the orange line heading to east county. If you need to get to a green line trolley, take the blue to Old Town for that connection. Just like with the 992, if you look at and print out available maps and timetables for the trolley online ahead of time and familiarize yourself with where the lines go, you’ll do just fine.
Dad Checks The Map As Son Watches The Trolley
The trolley is going through a $620 million renewal right now, so by 2015, this will be outdated information. The trolley cars in the photo above and in the video below will things of the past. San Diego will have sleek new trolley cars that will enable the green line to extend all the way to 12th & Imperial Transit Center. The whole project will make trolley travel more pleasant much faster and will make more sense than what we have now. I have a post that details the entire San Diego Trolley Renewal Project which includes a map of what the new route lines will look like. Living downtown is looking more appealing everyday and I think this new trolley system will make the America Plaza area especially desirable. Happy travels!
Trolleys & Travelers At America Plaza
June 25, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 1 Comment
Modern Day Holly Golightly
I like to wear shades, not just for style and UV protection, also to hide my eyes, so you can’t see what I’m looking at. Usually I want the actual function of sunglasses because it’s a bright world out there but in certain places, like while riding a public transportation bus, I want the tinted cover of perceived anonymity that sun glasses give me. I’m saying this as a bit of advice: If you get on any public transportation without shades in front of your eyes and earbuds IN your ear, you will be inviting all manner of unwanted things. Yes, shades and earbuds are how to tell everyone on the bus, the trolley and at the bus stop that you are off the clock and not open for business.
I took these photos some months ago when I was planning some sort of “sunglasses on the bus” themed post but that never panned out because I’ve been riding my bike everywhere, mostly on Bayshore Bikeway instead of using public transportation. Summer has definitely arrived in San Diego!
Sunglasses On The Bus
The thing is I really like to wear shades because I feel they somehow give me an edge. Sunglasses are such an amazingly simple thing but they have the power to turn down the sun AND hide your eyes from your neighbors; that’s a lot of power. I was on a San Diego city bus when I snapped both photos for this post and in both instances, I’m not sure if the women behind the shades were looking at me or not, due to the mighty power of the sun glasses.
The woman directly above began passing out as soon as she boarded the bus. Her man friend passed out next to her, hugging his guitar case yet still managing to always be tilting forward, precariously close to the edge of falling out of his seat. I’ll admit I was rooting for that because it would have been proof that he was really that out of it and not just entertaining himself with an impromptu Charlie Chaplin routine.
February 22, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
Mouseover Image To See High & Low Tide Difference
A couple weeks ago I read an article in IB Patch that said San Diego would have a “king tide.” The tide definitely came in! Mouseover either of the photos in this post to see the HUGE difference the tide makes in shaping our landscape.
Low Tide In South San Diego Bay
The low tide pics were taken about a month ago while the high tide pics were taken in the last couple days. For all four photos the vantage point is the southern edge of San Diego Bay, looking north while standing on the Bayshore Bikeway.
January 20, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 12 Comments
This Is What You Get If You Ride The San Diego Trolley
Some dude got jumped and robbed at the Park & Market San Diego trolley station last week, as you can see in the video above. SDMTS and the police are shopping this video around trying to get a lead. You know what’s missing from all this? A mug shot, taken from the video of the attack of the attackers. The reason it’s missing is because the “security” cameras record at such a shitty resolution that the faces of the attackers can’t even be seen.
Of course this has me asking the question, “Why did the public have to pay (via taxes) for security cameras at trolley stations that don’t have record enough detail to solve a crime?” Seriously, what does this video contribute to the prevention of crime? If the answer is “nothing” then why are the cameras there and why the fuck did I have to pay for them? With any luck at all, there is a San Diego version of Bernard Goetz that will take action, with SDMTS cameras recording the action in unusable, shitty quality.
December 3, 2010 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
Sleeping (Passed Out) On The San Diego Trolley
Today was just one of those public transportation days. Today was so off-kilter that it actually had me questioning my reasons, motivation and desire to give up driving a car to be an exclusive public transportation person. My problems started right out of the gate this morning, with the San Diego trolley showing up at my station over 20 minutes late, even though the trolley is supposed to arrive every 15 minutes. The real bitch of the situation is that my home trolley station is only a 16 minute trolley ride from the very first station on the line, which means the trolley I boarded this morning took 36 minutes to move it’s gigantic ass 5 stops down the line. Just to put that in perspective, it takes 45 minutes to cover the same distance on a bicycle. When it finally did arrive, the trolley contained the dude pictured above, drooling all over and hogging four seats to accommodate his worthless ass.
Chula Vista Police At Bayfront Trolley Station
I finally arrived at my transfer station and while waiting for my connecting bus, which was also 10 minutes late, a police car drove up the curb and parked right up on the wide yellow line of the trolley platform, so I started taking pictures, one of which you see above. The cop and what I think was a paramedic seemed to be waiting for the next trolley to arrive. They were talking and even laughing amongst themselves while they stood there doing whatever they were doing, and I was taking pictures the whole time. When they turned around and saw me photographing them, the laughter turned to the expression you see above, on both of their faces. Oh, law enforcement personnel… You have nothing to fear from my camera. I might even make you famous.
I-8 Crossing Sweetwater Bikeway
What should have been a 45 minute commute took almost two hours, so I was not able to eat lunch and I arrived to work late. Pissed off and hungry is no way to start your workday, but that’s what I was. I dreamt of food and wished for the weekend all day which made it very hard to concentrate on my job. I think the hunger was what broke my camel’s back in regards to thinking about why I ride the trolley and I realized that there is an inherent barrier to making trolley and bus service anything but an abysmal chore, relative to driving: Public commuters can’t complain. Who can we tell that would actually fix the problems of SDMTS? If I were to email this post to SDMTS, some one might read it, but that’s it. My proof can be seen by clicking here. Cheers!
November 12, 2010 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
Body Jewelry And An Arm Tattoo
On the San Diego trolley earlier today I saw a fellow passenger happened to have a tattoo accentuated with body jewelry. Of course I’ve seen tattoos and body jewelry before, but not combined together like this. I didn’t even ask him to pose his jeweled tattoo for me, he just had it up there, begging to be photographed.
November 5, 2010 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
A goodly amount of the time I spend waiting for buses and trolleys while at a San Diego transit stations is spent watching pigeons. They seem to have evolved in tandem with people because they only eat what we throw away, drop and spill. The puddle of fluid the pigeons above are drinking above had dripped from the tail pipe of a bus a few minutes before.
October 28, 2010 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
San Diego Trolley Is About To Change
The two models of San Diego trolley cars you see above will be a thing of the past by the summer of 2013. San Diego will have taken delivery and implemented use of 57 brand new Siemens S70 light rail vehicles. They are the same model as the green line LRV’s we have now, but customized to be shorter, giving them a length that allows them to travel to downtown station without blocking intersections.
October 28, 2010 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
Sunset At The Southern End Of Bayshore Bikeway
At southern most part of the Bayshore Bikeway, there is a metal bench that had me facing north, towards the Coronado Bridge and downtown San Diego, with the bike path directly behind me. The shot above took place while looking over my left shoulder, to the southwest.
South Bay Power Plant At Golden Hour
To my right was the scene above, the South Bay power plant, bathed in golden hour light. I keep hearing conflicting reports as to what is ever going to happen to the power plant; some say it’s coming down because of permit trouble or because it isn’t needed to ensure reliable electricity for the city anymore, and others say it’s going to stay because it has a relatively neutral environmental impact and California needs all the electricity it can get.
Dinosaur Cage Sunset In June
As the Earth orbits the sun and spins on it’s axis, the seasons change and the relative position of the sun rising and setting slides along the horizon. The photo above was taken from the same bench as the top photo in the post, but back in June 2010. During early summer, the sun sets directly behind the dinosaur cage, relative to the bench at the southern most part of Bayshore Bikeway.
Anyway, I’m trying to decide if I want to pay to have my 5 year sitting outside neglected 1970′s Free Spirit 10 speed bicycle fixed up or by a new bike altogether. I want to start riding my bike to work but not having a bike to ride is the first, most important obstacle to overcome.