24 Comments

  1. What do you expect of a bus company that has a snail for a mascot. It took me a bit to figure out that’s what was on the side.

  2. Nice approximation of a ’40s Greyhound “Silversides” bus, built by Yellow Coach division of General Motors.

  3. From the evidence I’ve seen here so far, I get the impression that the effort spent on following the rebooted “Alley Oop” would be better off split between “Gasoline Alley” and “Funky Winkerbean”.

  4. Bus trips can seem interminable (no pun intended) as you hit the bus terminal in every Podunk city between starting point and your selfish destination. I took one ride from MD to MI that went through the entire night, about double what a direct route should have been. Nothing beats a sleepless night and seeing an old brick building advertising the National School of Meat Cutting in Toledo, OH

    I was more inclined to rely on the ride board with total strangers after that.

  5. Long-distance bus rides can absolutely feel interminable. They’re so much cheaper than any other option, though. I mean, trains SHOULD be price-competitive with buses, and are absolutely the most comfortable way to travel, but they actually have the prices of airplanes with the speed of buses.

    But they are so much more comfortable than either. Or driving. If you want to get from point A to point B and feel human at the end, trains are your only option. A third-class train seat is more comfortable than a first-class plane seat.

    Of the four most typical ways to get around the United States, listed from best to worst in various categories:
    Price:
    Bus, Driving, Plane, Train
    Speed
    Plane, Driving, Train, Bus
    Comfort
    Train, Driving, Plane, Bus

    As “bus” is last in both comfort and speed, it definitely feels even longer than it is.

  6. I guess the speed of the bus is the reason for the lack of passengers.
    As for trains, I used to take the train between Trenton and Washington DC, and it was a lot faster than driving. And more comfortable too.

  7. It’s not the SPEED of the bus that’s an issue, as much as the fact that it often goes from Point A to Point B by way of Points C, F, L, P, Q, W and Y.

  8. “And if you have to transport dogs, driving’s the only way to go.”

    I brought a cat cross-country on an airline a few months ago.

  9. One cat vs six dogs . . . makes a difference. I, too, flew one of my dogs from WI to AZ to visit my Mother in her nursing home. The airlines have doubled the cost of flying an animal under the seat.

  10. “James – Has the cat forgiven you?”

    Yes. Some people have an emotional support animal. My animal has an emotional support human.

  11. Countless songs over the decades make references to Greyhound bus rides, often in a rather unglamorous light.

    As a humble singer-songwriter I made a couple of failed attempts to write songs featuring buses not from Greyhound but from Peter Pan, a regional bus line. It’s fun to include regional references in a song and all, but there’s a reason Greyhound references resonate in songs…they are instantly recognizable. Kinda like trying to write a song about modern-day train travel that doesn’t involve Amtrak.

  12. Some of the newer, cheaper bus companies, I have read, do not go to the bus terminals, but stop along the road somewhere.

    I had to take the public bus to college my first year. The 20 minute car ride took over an hour by bus – but that did include a 15 walk to the bus stop – which was near my old high school. (Looking very young if I timed it right I would walk onto the high school “late bus” for a ride home.)

  13. @ianosmond trains would be a lot more price-competitive with buses if the buses weren’t effectively subsidized by having the roads provided to them (whereas the train track maintenance is paid for by train companies.)

  14. “Some of the newer, cheaper bus companies, I have read, do not go to the bus terminals, but stop along the road somewhere.”

    Greyhound has been doing this for a very long time. Back in my youth, I was shipped between my parents and between my parents and other relatives by bus, and sometimes I could talk the driver into letting me off closer to where I was going than the “terminal” (some were dedicated terminals, and some were other businesses that operated a Greyhound terminal on the side.)

    When I enlisted, I had to report at 6:00am for entrance processing in the city, but I had a final the night before and the last bus that pulled off the Interstate enough to pick up passengers in the college town left before the final finished. So I had to do my final, then walk about ten miles to the nearest city that was on the Interstate, catch the bus that stopped there at about 2:00am, make the 2 hour bus ride to the city, and then navigate the city bus line from the Greyhound terminal to the military entrance processing facility. I may have been a bit sleepy upon arrival, but I had about 15 minutes or so between when I got there and when the doors opened.

  15. “A lot of people named “Chin” lived there?”

    Yes, actually. I vaguely remember some old “hard-boiled private eye” novel with the line about a fat lady, “She had more chins than the Hong Kong phone book.”

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