I hear Passengers complain about grumpy Drivers all the time.
In fact, I get those compliments all the time because of it,
"You're the nicest...you're the most upbeat....you're the friendliest...."
Not because I really am nicer, friendlier or happier than anybody else.
But because some Drivers are truly grumpy!
And I'm starting to really understand why.
Don't get me wrong, I don't condone the bad moods, foul tempers or swearing.
Whether at the passengers or traffic around them.
But I understand at least part of the reason.
I'm told it's because I'm still too new, too fresh and chipper - that I don't get affected by the traffic.
I'm told it's because I'm an idiot or because I'm ignorant.
Yup, Senior Drivers say all this too me.
But I still understand why traffic puts other Drivers in a bad mood.
I experience it all the time, the bad traffic.
Bad drivers who cut us off, who slam on their brakes, who dart in and out of our "safety cushions" - you know, those open spaces around the buses? Drivers always leave exit plans, safety cushions and buffer/brake zones around the bus.
Consider this: at the speed limit, I'm going just shy of 100 feet per second.
In only 3 seconds, I've covered a football field.
Then consider that the bus runs from 25 to 35 tons.
So trying to stop a bus on a dime - you know, when that car darts in front of the bus then slams on his brakes because...well, just because?
Yeah, that dime.
It takes almost that whole football field just to stop.
More actually but if I slam on the brakes, I may stop within that 300 feet.
Problem is, that open space, that cushion I left between me and the car in front of me?
Yeah, you and another driver or two jumped into that cushion at the last second.
So now I have you and another driver on my football field - about to get tin can crushed.
It really really really is dangerous, folks.
I can't stress how flipping dangerous it is to cut off the bus.
Please stop this.
I know you wont but I have to ask.
You don't normally hear about buses crushing the cars in front or around them.
The Drivers do a really good job of driving defensively and being aware and reacting well.
But the occasional accident makes headlines all over.
Me, I don't care, really.
You can drive like the nutter you are, I'll just slow down and be safe.
I'm paid by the minute - outta YOUR taxes - so if you want to be a jerk and cut me off, I'll do my job and slow down.
Now the passengers you're ticking off who are in my bus?
One day you'll be one of them.
And you'll get ticked at the guy cutting us off - that's Karma.
But I can't ask this enough, please driver safely?
Please be aware that the bus you're jerking around isn't the Volkswagen you cut off a minute ago, but a 35 ton cruise missile aimed at your rear license plate.
Please be safe.
And if you want these other Drivers to be less grumpy, be nice to them.