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The good, the bad & the ugly: Share your transit commuter stories

A photo of an unidentified male who is allegedly accused of assaulting a female passenger after not allowing her to sit next to him.
A photo of an unidentified male who is allegedly accused of assaulting a female passenger after not allowing her to sit next to him. Brenda Davie/Facebook

TORONTO – The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) said it is investigating an alleged exchange between two passengers on one of its buses after one of the commuter’s Facebook post about the incident went viral on social media.

Earlier this week, Toronto commuter Brenda Davie posted on her Facebook page that she was on a packed bus after work when she asked a man if he could remove the bag he left on the seat next to him so that she could sit down.

According to Davie’s post, the man responded by saying, “No, my bag is there.”  After a second request to have the bag removed the man allegedly stepped on Davie’s foot and proceeded to push her into a crowd of passengers.

READ MORE: Social media post on bad TTC bus behaviour goes viral

“I asked him afterwards if he felt like a big man now and told him I’m glad his backpack was comfortable. And that’s the kind of day I’m having,” wrote Davie.

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SHARE YOUR STORIES: What is the worst experience you’ve had on public transit? The best? Tell us your stories (the good and the bad – we can handle it) on our Facebook page here.

While many on social media were outraged by the reported exchange, others advised that not all facts were known about the incident.

This ‘crazy’ train

Four years ago, Toronto resident Cindy “C.J.” Smith began This Crazy Train – an online blog that focused on public transit “horror stories.”

“I once watched a man brush his teeth next to me on the GO train,” said Smith in an email to Global News. “He had two water bottles. One was empty and one had water. He used the one with water to rinse his mouth and he used the other to spit into it.”

Smith said she posts stories that she may witness on her commutes or ones that are shared to her by her friends and strangers.

Smith said there are four (simple) rules all commuters should follow:

  • Be aware – you’re not in a bubble
  • Check the volume of your music and your mobile notifications
  • Keep your feet off the seat
  • Keep your personal life to text messaging

But not all commuter transit stories are bad, said Smith, recalling the time an elderly woman boarded her train route.

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“[The woman] had never taken that transit route before and was heading to the hospital to visit her sister who had suffered a massive stroke the day before,” she said. “Her husband had died earlier in the year and with no family nearby; transit was her only option as her husband did all the driving. Two other passengers, including myself, stayed with her during the ride and helped her navigate from the train station to the subway station.”

Smith said one of the passengers then told the woman he would walk with her from the subway station to the hospital and would “pick her up after he was done work to help her get home.”

“Despite everything I’ve covered on my blog, I still have faith in humanity,” she wrote.