I’ve been riding the MBTA since before most of my friends were born, and it never used to suck so bad. My bus today into Boston took so long, at one point I almost forgot I was traveling and, instead, felt like I was living in an extremely crowded trailer home parked at the Dedham Mall. I could have read a book on that bus, if if been able to raise my arms to hold it. It was overcrowded because they run infrequently.
Mind you, almost anywhere you look on the MBTA — the stations, the subway interiors, the inside and outside of buses and trains — there are ads. Aren’t these public spaces? Don’t that station and vehicle, really, belong to you? Maybe you don’t want them to look like that. Why are they so underfunded? Your tax money is going somewhere. All this advertising revenue is going somewhere too.
Public transportation should be free. It should be ubiquitous. It should be awesome. Instead, the MBTA is a source of misery for its riders. When my ride finally got to Forest Hills, I asked that bus full of people “Are we actually at the station? I feel like I’ve been on this bus for ten years. Anyone else?” Dirty looks were the only response offered by my fellow passengers.