Last week, after picking up a few things at the QFC on Broadway & Republican, I walked out to the bus stop for the quick ride home.
While I was standing there, a man walked up to a fellow bus rider and asked “Has the 49 come yet?”.
“No, it’s due in about 10 minutes”, replied the rider.
“Thanks, I have time to run inside”, replied the man.
“You may just want to stand here”, I quickly interjected, “the previous bus was running late and will be here in about a minute.”
The man gave me a strange look, and then, almost as if on queue, the 49 rounded the corner on Broadway.
“Are you psychic or something?”, the man asked, expecting an explanation for my correctness.
“Yes”, I replied … and I said nothing further.
Sometimes, fake superpowers are better than no superpowers.
The bus stopped, I got on, rode home, and everything was just swell.
“I’m happy for you, Rex, but as your biggest fan, can you tell me how you knew the the bus was coming?
Well, since you asked nicely.
I kid. I kid.
A few months ago, I installed one of the most useful apps imaginable on my Android. It’s called “One Bus Away”, and it is as the kids say, the bomb dizzle. When you fire it up, it locates all of the King Count Metro stops near you, and when you tap a stop, it shows all of the arrivals and departures … in real time.
How does it do this? I do not know. What I do know is that it works, and it works amazingly well. (note: if I call something amazing, it really is.)
You would not believe just how much this program has improved the quality of my life.
For instance, do I have time to run into the nearby store and grab a cup of coffee? Now I know.
I have to use the bathroom, can I play on my home field, or will it have to be an away game (which I always lose due to a shy anus)? Now I know.
Seriously, this thing is a huge time saver and it greatly improves my transit efficiency.
It also improves my mental health.
I’m a very impatient person and one of the worst things about waiting for a bus or train is the great unknown. When you are standing at a stop, you really don’t know whether it will be 5 minutes or 50 minutes … or if your bus is even coming at all (sometimes they break down). This unknown quantity really ups the agitation level for yours truly.
When I know, however, that the bus is coming, and it’s 7 minutes away, I tend to relax a bit more. I’m less stressed. It makes the entire process more enjoyable, not to mention … more efficient.
This application has earned the coveted #1 spot on my Android “Transit” screen.
It’s also free, so how can you go wrong? I’d pay five bones for it in a heartbeat.
For those of you in the Puget Sound that take Metro, and given our traffic problems you really should, this little app is indispensable.
Download it, love it, make it yours:
I give it a solid 9/10, simply to allow for future interface improvements.