Sushi すし
What does this sushi have to do with transit? Let me tell you. Photo by localjapantimes.

Researchers in Sweden performed a study measuring satisfaction for people who use public transit and people who do not. They performed two experiments, one measuring the satisfaction of transit-users and non-transit users before and after a month of using their preferred mode of transportation, and another where they asked some drivers to switch to public transit for a month and compared their satisfaction with people who didn’t switch, and those who were already using public transit. Their findings:

  1. People who used public transit were happier with public transit than those who don’t
  2. People who switched to public transit significantly underestimated how much they would like using public transit
  3. People who switched to public transit were happier overall than people who didn’t switch to transit

The first point is not at all surprising. People who eat sushi probably have higher opinions of sushi than people who don’t eat sushi have, too. The second is also not hugely surprising. People who can ride transit but don’t must have low opinions of transit to start with, and low opinions can probably only go up. Similarly, people who don’t eat sushi because they think raw fish is gross, might be surprised to see there’s other stuff, asparagus tempura rolls for example. So from the outside number three might seem surprising, but not, I think, when using my tired and stretched sushi analogy. If you think you won’t like sushi, try it, find out you actually really like sushi, you are going to be pretty happy. Here’s this whole new thing you didn’t think you’d like but do. The world is full of new great things, you might think.

This goes back to my point some time ago that Americans don’t like utopias that don’t have cars in them. If your whole life you grew up eating fish and chips and thinking (maybe being told) that sushi was something other people did and it wasn’t for you, you might not want to imagine a future where people ate a lot of sushi (I may have certainly laboured this one to death, now). So people who grew up being driven and driving, people who only see buses as obstacles to getting to their destination faster, I can easily imagine them seeing the world as a happy place when show how nice transit can actually be.

How applicable a study from bus-riders in southern Sweden is to people in Seattle is not totally obvious; presumably these guys didn’t have to ride the 358. Still, it seems the simplest thing to getting people to want transit or cycling infrastructure may be just getting them out of the car the first time.

42 Replies to “Does riding public transit make you happy?”

    1. I can’t say I’m unhappy with my present commute. 35 minutes each way by car vs 1hour 30 minutes by 3 bus transfers. I leave when is convenient for me and not to a set schedule. And the cost for my mobility while overall is more, my time savings are substantial. There is also the added advantage of being able to cut loose with ones personal behavior. You can sing loudly and badly and not have a worry about nauseating a seat mate. You can curse at the “idiot” who cut you off and release those endorphins instead of holding in your angst when people do stupid things on public buses.

      Perhaps, EastLink will shorten that commute for me and I’ll consider giving it a try again.

      Meanwhile after 2 years of being without the use of my car and taking public transit everywhere, I’m enjoying the mobility options my resurrected car provides.

    1. I thought the sushi analogy was both a bit forced and a bit trite. Not really an apt analogy, because sushi isn’t actively improving our city. Other flaws with this analogy exist, but in general I expect a higher level of journalism from Seattle Transit Blog (this post is up there with the post about handing out free carrots on buses…)

      1. Sushi isn’t actively improving our city.

        Gotta disagree with you there.

        I’ve experienced far better transit the world over, but I’ve rarely had better sushi.

        Our sushi is fresh and luscious, while our buses are rancid. And our subway plans are stuck on “California roll“.

        If anything, it’s the sushi that keeps Seattle moving forward.

  1. I’d love to take this study a step further and look at people who switch to walking/biking from both driving and mass transit. Maybe that data’s out there…? I know in my life the biggest happiness boost came from switching from car to walking. When I then had to go back to a bus commute it was kind of a bummer. Now this in Seattle. The year I lived in Seoul I’d say I enjoyed my subway commute just as much as walking, perhaps because it involved about 8-10 minutes walking on either end. Hm.

    1. There’s little question that even moderate levels of exercise will raise endorphin levels, so it’s quite probable that the exercise usually associated with public transport use are a contributing factor to these results.

  2. More transit times and options are the only thing that would make the expedience more enjoyable. Buses being on time and not having to worry because there is another one coming in under 5 minutes. If you want people to like it, it actually has to be good. The same can be said of fish. I guess some people are ok with bad fish every day.

    1. I agree. There is a negative, perhaps outdated stereotype about buses. Perhaps that is why streetcars have such a positive image. They aren’t a stinky bus, they are shiny streetcars. But if you ride a bus, you realize that buses have really improved over the years, and that most of your fellow riders are nice and courteous.

      But none of that makes up for a terrible, long commute. Most people I know who drive to work do so because it is quicker. Even with the awful traffic, it takes a lot less time to get from your house to your work. As our system improves, transit will be competitive, and even faster than driving (it already is in many cases). When that happens, lots of people switch.

      The same can be said for bike commuting. As Kevin said, my happiest commute was probably by bike. I feel awake and like I accomplished something as I walk into work. But my commute was on the Burke Gilman, and Burke Gilman only. That road is relatives safe, fun and easy. A typical bike commute that takes you through busy streets is anything but.

  3. There is room for all kinds. Don’t be too hard on those who for one reason or another need to use their cars to get to work. And yes, having been on buses in southern Sweden, definitely not like the 358 :)

  4. From the automobile’s invention until around the 1970s, people really enjoyed cars. In the 1920s cars were more entertainment and status symbol than everyday workhorses. The first proto-freeways were parkways, which were not intended to take people to work but to the countryside on Sundays. Cars became the symbol of freedom and (when their speed improved) the fastest way to get around.

    In the 1950s freeway expansion went into high gear, but still people worked pretty close to home. Seattle to Seattle, or Bellevue to Seattle. But Boeing made things a little different, because people drove long distances to Boeing. (And they’d often be shifted from Renton to Everett or vice-versa after they’d bought their house. Supposedly that’s why Kirkland was built up, because it’s halfway between the two.)

    In the late 1970s traffic started becoming a pervasive problem, and the majority of people now lived in the suburbs where transit was hardly an option, and then the new schools became unwalkable due to the large land required for mandatory stadiums and fields, and then the rise of big-box stores. In some cities, areas became too unsafe to walk in. Driving several times a day became more and more necessary, and more and more a drudgery, and traffic and other drivers made it more and more stressful.

    Some people have switched to transit for at least part of their trips. Others don’t think transit is a good enough alternative yet (or can never be). In some cases they’re right, as 10-minute drives become 2-hour bus rides. But those who are on the bus say they like having the time to read and relax rather than being constantly on the lookout for drivers about to run into them.

    1. I am happy with using transit when it suits me (i.e. when going downtown) but unfortunately using the bus now to get out of town is just unworkable. This morning I just wanted to meet a family member at Alderwood mall, and I went over my options again to see if I could avoid driving…

      By car its 20 minutes, by bicycle 1 hour and by bus 1 hour and 30 minutes (with 3 transfers).

      Due to the ridiculous number of transfers necessary in our bus system this is nearly always the case. Bicycle beats bus over short and long distances. Sometimes bus beats bicycle over a medium distance, but that is only the case when there are no transfers involved.

      So today I chose car… not because I prefer going by car, but because the delay I would be expected to endure to get there vs car is just ridiculous and there is little or no benefit for doing so. If Link were already completed up to the Lynnwood park and ride, the choice would have been reversed. I would be willing to make a 20 minute trip a 45 minute trip while taking transit, but once that 20 minute trip seeps into the hour plus territory, it begins to look completely unpalatable.

      1. I tend to like transit, even if it takes a bit longer, part stress relief of driving, but part because it motivates me to get out and get some exercise and resist the inevitable temptation to be lazy. That being said, I am fortunate enough that very few of the trips I make require an absolute hard-and-fast time at which I need to be somewhere. The few times these trips do happen tend to be the times when I take Car2Go or a taxi, rather than the bus.

        Yesterday, I took three trips which illustrated completely opposite experiences with the bus.

        1) Lynnwood to U-district. Due to the 511’s not stopping at 45th St., I needed a connection to the 855 at Lynnwood Transit Center. Both buses were on-time, the connection was seemless, and the wait at Lynnwood Transit Center was minimal. I was tired and dozed off most of the ride. Overall experience: A.

        2) U-district to downtown. Needed be downtown by 11:30. Left home at 10:45 for a trip that is bikeable in 25-30 minutes or driveable in 10-15 minutes. The bus was late and extremely crowded. In spite of being “express”, it didn’t make it to Convention Place Station until 11:34. Guess I need to allow a full hour for a 5-6 mile trip next time. More likely, I’ll simply bike or take Car2Go instead. Overall experience: D-.

        3) North Kirkland to downtown. Connection between the 234 and 255 at Kirkland Transit Center was seemless, and 520 was a breeze. Got off at Montlake Freeway Station right as everyone was coming home from the Apple Cup. Then jogged passed all the cars and buses stuck in traffic down the Montlake Blvd. sidewalk and Burke Gilman Trail. Being able to get off at Montlake Freeway Station and use my legs the rest of the way made for a relaxing and pleasant trip. Driving it, by contrast, would have been downright miserable. The only thing missing was a straight path down 108th, rather than a slog through South Kirkland P&R. Overall experience: A-.

        Somewhat ironic that the trip that is best known for being a transit trip, and a one-seat ride to boot, was the worst, while the trips over longer-distances with transfers turned out better. Door to door, total travel time for all three trips was very similar.

      2. I don’t know that our system requires a ridiculous amount of transfers. There just isn’t going to be a bus route local enough to stop at Alderwood Mall and long enough to take you much closer than Seattle than Lynnwood TC in any reasonable system. Lynnwood Link will improve this a bit by making almost everyone in Seattle two seats from Lynnwood TC (today some people with local routes oriented toward the U District and all people with local routes oriented toward Northgate are two seats from the 512). Maybe Alderwood Mall will get a Link station, though I can’t imagine why.

        Really, a lot of the transfer requirements have more to do with the layout and infrastructure of the city and its road network than the bus system. We’re still really bad at integrating transit infrastructure into major road projects.

      3. @Charles B – Ah, Seattle to Alderwood Mall – a perfect example of the kind of first and last-mile difficulties that motivate a lot of people to conclude that transit sucks and drive the entire way.

        The key to making a transit trip fun and reasonable in total time is to break the problem down into manageable pieces and look for ways to speed things up while getting some exercise. I can’t say what the best car-free solution for you would be since I don’t know what neighborhood you live in, what equipment you have, how much you want to carry home from the mall etc., but I can tell you what my solution would be, and how I would go about problem-solving.

        First, I consider the routes between Seattle and Lynnwood and conclude that any reasonable transit option is going to have to use the ST 512 because it covers the bulk of the miles an order of magnitude faster than any other service. So the problem simply becomes a question of how to get from home to a 512 stop and how to get a 512 stop to Alderwood Mall on the other end.

        On the home side, I live near Ravenna Park, about 1.1 miles from the I-5/45th St. Freeway Station. A brisk walk covers the ground in about 20 minutes. It is also possible to take the 30 to the 44, or take either the 30 or 44 about halfway and walk the other half, but neither of these options are actually any faster than simply walking the entire way, and walking the entire way is more relaxing and less stressful.

        Next step in planning is to figure out where to get off the 512 and what to do from there. The only reasonable place to get off the 512 Lynnwood Transit Center, about 1.5 miles from the mall. There are connecting buses available, but given Community Transit’s short recovery times and the unknowns in how long it takes the 512 to get through downtown before it gets to 45th St., any connections at the transit center are unlikely to be reliable. On top of that, the connecting bus would likely get stuck in mall traffic, anyway, making for a rather slow trip. So, I next look up the map and see just how far apart the mall and the transit center actually are, to gauge the feasibility of bridging the gap with my own feet. Turns out that the distance between the mall and the TC is only a mile and a half, and it’s a mile and a half that consists of the taking the interurban trail almost all the way. Walking it is possible, but the walk would be about 30 minutes and Google Earth imagery suggests that the walk would be rather dull. On the other hand, if I jog the mile and half, the last-mile travel times goes down from 30 minutes to around 15 – about the same amount of time as driving from the TC to the mall and finding a place to park would take.

        So, at this point, the total trip time looks like this:
        20 minutes (walking) +
        5-10 minutes (waiting for the 512) +
        10-15 minutes (riding the 512) +
        15 minutes (jogging down the Interurban Trail)
        = 50-60 minutes (total).

        Still not as fast as driving, but it at least gets a workout in. Plus, if it avoids the need to spend a half-hour on the treadmill later (plus another 15 minutes round trip driving to the gym), the transit trip suddenly starts to look competitive with driving on a total time basis, maybe even a bit ahead.

        Next, I would start thinking that while I’m at the mall, I’ll probably want to buy something small for myself, which means I some way to carry the stuff home. Plus, after finishing the trip and walking around the mall for a couple of hours, I might be a bit tired for the 1.5 mile jog back to Lynnwood. But I would then figure that my friend and I would probably be walking out of the mall together and he could easily give me a ride to the transit center (in the car he must have because he lives in Lynnwood) on his way home. For the last mile home from 45th St. at the end, I would have just had a car ride and bus ride to rest up, so walking the last 1.1 miles home wouldn’t be such a big deal. Absolute worst case, taking Lyft or Car2Go for one mile would not be the end of the world.

        And, so we have it:

        50-60 minutes total travel time
        – 30 minutes (treadmill time avoided)
        – 15 minutes (round trip travel time driving to the gym avoided)
        = 5-15 minutes net travel time

        – 20 minutes (driving from home to the freeway exit closest to the mall)
        – 5-15 minutes (sitting in traffic around the mall and searching for parking)
        = 25-40 minutes net travel time

        Looks like transit wins! Yay!

  5. The study is totally relevant when your on the “nice” services around here. (Warning: I’m 20, grew up in the south county suburbs, so that’s my lens on this). For instance, riding the sounder, ST Express busses, and Link are all fantastic. They totally blow away your expectations. Of course that’s not all of public transit. There is the nightmare that is midday service in anywhere that’s not Seattle. It’s very frustrating, and disappointing.

    /there are my 2 cents.

  6. I am more likely to trust sushi (though it has to be vegetarian) if I know those preparing it have actually tried it. When I know the chef himself hasn’t actually tried the avocado rolls, that is a bad sign. When all the avocado rolls roll by, untouched, run away!

    So, we have policies set by politicians (chefs) who rarely try their own concoctions. They don’t have to put up with the indigestion caused by never-expiring paper transfers that mean the person sitting next to you hasn’t actually paid any of the numerous times he has come to the bar for the past month; nonsensical time differentials that depend on whether your server knows you bought the blue-plate special before Happy Hour was over; or you get a buffet coupon, and the server fails to honor it because you didn’t get it stamped at the start. Plus, the roller stops every time someone pushes a button to pick something out, and takes a minute to restart. Wow, that roller is going nowhere fast! The politicians, who don’t partake at the bar, don’t mind the clever stop button they introduced because someone told them it does something or other for social equity, even though it slows down everyone’s meal and doesn’t actually do anything for anyone.

    Back to the avocado rolls: The manager hasn’t seen the same avocado rolls roll by that nobody touches all day. Some vegetarians who haven’t eaten there insist the avocado rolls should stay in the line-up, in case a vegetarian shows up. But the vegetarians do show up, and are eating other items they find more pallatable. It takes a decision of the board of directors to remove the avocado rolls from the line-up, but some soft-hearted carnivores keep asking how the vegetarians will adjust.

    Finally, one of the board members bites into the avocado roll, and it occurs to him, “This tastes terrible! Maybe we shouldn’t have put onion in with the avocado. And what’s with this roller that stops for a whole minute every time a customer grabs a plate? I thought we put out a $5 no-stop card that grants customers the privilege of grabbing plates without stopping the roller. I didn’t realize until now why nobody was buying that card.”

  7. Would have truly enjoyed being able to take Metro, ST, and Intercity Transit express buses to my new residence in Olympia last night, and return to Seattle this evening after seeing client in Lynnwood.

    Planned on dinner at Tacoma’s Freight House Square between ST and IT, and a cafe stop and some shopping in Downtown Olympia, before riding good IT local service to my place.

    All comfortably possible by posted schedules. However, absolutely had to arrive in Tacoma before 6:30. Waiting for transfer around Freight House Square, or at the History Museum closer into town, my other transfer alternative, after 7pm closing time on a fall night is a beyond inconvenient.

    Twenty minutes wait at Ballard and Market for the Route 40 that should have arrived at 4:56, pushed trip out of comfort zone. Was exhausted from a day including a car trip to a work session in Lynnwood
    and weather was getting darker and wetter. But walked ten minutes back to my apartment and took off southbound.

    Coffee and e-mail on Beacon Hill, waffle in Columbia City, fast, hard freeway drive to Olympia. Folk-story reading at cafe in Olympia, shopping at Thriftway by the harbor, and arrival featuring note on door from power company I needed to call them.

    Glass of wine by flashlight, bedding down on new rug, three hours sleep like the high latitudes: silent and cold. Discovered why Roald Amundsen took furry warm animals to the South Pole for mobility. Commander Robert Scott brought along Caterpillar tractors, one in a chain of similar decisions which resulted in him freezing to death.

    Idea of return car trip welcome as certain after-hours travel in German poetry. Go to Wikipedia for “Denn die Todten reiten schnell!” and “Erlking.” But diner full of happy young people sent me northward with a double paper-cup of Earl Grey.

    Experimental results?

    1. For someone with knowledge and skill, every tool has its enjoyable use.

    2. Matters involved in change of residence carry uncertainties beyond easy reach of transit. Car travel must be considered combined reconnaissance and freight trip.

    3. Successful transit for this region requires priority upgrade of local service in Seattle, and improvement many other places. “Local service” itself has changed meanings, due to changes in the way we live our lives. Call it gerrymandering, but I still live in the same locality. I’ve just adjusted its boundaries.

    Mark Dublin


  8. I’m totally not trusting sushi nor any kind of fish pulled out of the pacific ocean due to increasing contamination from Fukushima radiation.

    Riding public transportation makes me happy when its timely and isn’t interfered with by ice slick or snow packed roads, heavy car traffic, car crashes and breakdowns, and when it is right of way which renders the aforementioned issues irrelevant.

    1. There are, unfortunately, many human pollutants about which we must be wary when selecting what (and how much) to eat from our modern seafood supply chain.

      Fukushima radiation is not one of them. At least not over here.

      Your irrational fear reminds me of a woman on the bus recently, who opined loudly that Seattle should never build subways because of the risk of earthquakes, and who, when challenged with myriad counterexamples, invoked her Pacific Northwest birthright never to be confronted with facts inconvenient to her worldview.

      As Brent analogizes above, we would be well-advised to defer to experience-informed and established-best-practice-based decision making, rather than letting the fearful and the clueless throw out the choice fish because “Fukushima”, then serve us decades-old tuna jerky.

      1. (also under the domain name may best be described as a left-wing equivalent to WingNutDaily… Many of’s articles discuss legitimate humanitarian or environmental concerns, but the site has a strong undercurrent of reality warping and bullshit throughout its pages. Despite presenting itself as a source of scholarly analysis, mostly consists of polemics many of which accept (and use) conspiracy theories, pseudoscience and propaganda… Apparently, contributors to consider information sourced from anyone who seems aligned to their ideology as reliable.

        Your second link merely informs us that boats, buildings, and other debris pulled out to sea by the initial tidal wave are capable of being swept to our shores by ocean currents — this was never in dispute — and has nothing whatsoever to do with radiation dispersal from the nuclear plant.

        While it’s certainly not impossible for select fish stocks to become sick from Fukushima runoff, there is no credible evidence that this has actually happened to date. Worry about mercury buildup and about unsustainable fish farming or wild-catch methods. Don’t concoct a baseless phobia of irradiated Godzilla fish.

      2. From your own second link:

        Independent groups like the 5 Gyres Institute, which tracks pollution at sea, have echoed the NOAA’s findings, saying that radiation readings have been “inconsequential.” Even the release of radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear reactor shouldn’t be a grave concern, since scientists say it will be diluted to the point of being harmless by the time it reaches American shores in 2014.

      3. Ultimately, I hope it’s mere alarmism. and that Tepco doesn’t screw up on the rod removal, because if they do, we’re in for some devastating consequences, and not just the west coast.

      4. Don’t worry, if there’s one thing that TEPCO has proven by now its their ability to exceed anyone’s expectations on their incompetience.

    2. By the end of the nineteenth century, our country had the technical ability to build the transit system you’re talking about. We’re a hundred years ahead in engineering, construction, and finance now. We had a bullet train called the Electroliner between Chicago and Milwaukee in the ‘thirties.

      Along with fast, comfortable passenger rail, streetcar, elevated, and subway lines in all our major cities, and some minor ones too.

      Recommend a book called “American Road”. After WWI, the US Army, unsettled by our railroads’ problems with demands of a one-front war, sent a convoy of about two dozen military trucks from New York to San Francisco to check the condition of our intercity roads.

      If they hadn’t also sent along a giant Caterpillar tractor called the “Militor”, just returned from hauling cannons out of Belgian mud, none of the trucks would have got past the midwest. Convoy officer Dwight Eisenhower spent three decades spearheading the remedy.

      As a defense program. The word is in the title of the enabling legislation- making opposition sound sort of like treason. Though in the 1950’s, nobody had the imagination to even think why everybody shouldn’t really love the whole thing.

      Unlike the dangerously overdue maintenance on the National Defense Highway System now.

      So a rail and bus ground transportation system exactly as you describe should really be a cake-walk- which really was was a dance-step from the days when we had the public transit we need now. It’s just a matter of the right title on the bill.

      Let’s call it the National Defense Local, Regional, and National Rail and Bus Passenger Transportation Act. PR campaign could show Osama Bin Laden’s ghost giving electric trains and reserved bus-lanes the finger.

      It’s time the words “National Defense” be applied to measures that really achieve that end.


    3. This makes me think of November 16th…I took the bus to Tacoma to spend the day at the Washington History Museum(DB Cooper exhibit). I timed everything right for the return trip on the last Sounder to Seattle. Just as I was getting settled in, we pulled into Puyallup and the engineer said that he couldn’t go further than Sumner due to a pedestrian getting hit by another train. I had to decide right then if I wanted to chance it and go further…but I decided I had a better chance at getting home from Puyallup than Sumner. I don’t know that area very well, but figured Puyallup had better connections than Sumner. I took Pierce Transit to Federal Way Transit Center, RapidRide to Sea-Tac, LINK to IDS then Metro to Northgate where I had parked my car. Yeah, I still drive to Northgate instead of taking the #347 because I hate just missing it and having to wait 30 minutes for the next one. But, making my trip 90% by public transit is still good.

  9. I make new friends / re-find old ones on transit! I suppose I could go out for sushi with them.

    [Really, I mean it — I have found my high school math team captain and newspaper editor on buses, and my high school was in Connecticut; I’ve met college alums whom I’d never seen while on campus, friends-of-friends; and this isn’t counting ‘familiar strangers’.

    Another analogy is running on a treadmill at home vs. running on a well-used trail: you can watch TV and read a magazine at home, or you can look at cute dogs and their humans.]

    I currently live a life where transit works quite well, but I understand this might not be forever. I’m pretty confident that I’ll never think of transit users as “the other,” however.

  10. I prefer transit — riding can be unpleasent, but have a pretty high pain threshold. Driving conveys some sense of liberty, but also tends to stress me out.

    Rght now I’m staying in an area of Pierce with only every other hour weekday service and no Saturday or Sunday service. I have been coping during the week, but last Friday a Pierce Transit operator left nine minutes early, leaving me to scramble to make the ST buses to get into Seattle since I couldn’t be two hours late. That certainly didn’t make me happy, but I am lucky to be able-bodied enough to walk the 40 minutes to the next stop with :30 minute headways.

    Fortunately, Hertz has been having rates for ~$10 a weekend day after taxes and fees, plus they will pick me up. I might be happier taking transit more if it were more available, but until that is an option, the ability to rent for low rates helps fill the gaps!

  11. Who wouldn’t be happy eating Sushi, when you only have to pay 30% of its price, while meals at other restaurants not only cover their costs, but even get taxed to pay for Sushi?

      1. I think he’s trying to make an analogy to transit operating subsidies versus autos. But not factoring in the reverse analogy that providing sushi on the menu reduces the cost for other food stocks and makes them more accessible to the food consuming public. Or something like that.

    1. A better analogy is that meals at steak restaurants are exempted from restaurant taxes, but have a specialty steak tax that is only allowed to be used to subsidize farmers who raise cows for meat, and between the price of the meal and the tax, it doesn’t actually cover the cost of raising the cows. (Yikes! Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.) This is perceived as a fair arrangement as long as the steak eaters outnumber those who don’t partake of beef. But hey, those cows produce methane, and their pasteurs produce oxygen we need to breathe. Or at least that’s how the gaseous argument goes. (Never mind the opportunity cost of devoting so much of our available arable land to raising cows.)

      Meanwhile, everyone pays sales tax to support the produce farmers (except when eating steak), so the sTEAk Party bloviates about those evil vegetarians. The Washington Mutiny Institute even hires people to post hateful stuff about vegetarians, under clownish pseudonyms, wherever they can find a semi-relevant online story with a comment section.

      1. Of course, sushi eaters don’t pay sales tax when they’re eating sushi either, and there are special taxes on beef eaters that can only be used to support sushi eaters, and while it’s true that sales tax isn’t applicable to about half the cost of a steak dinner, the rest of the cost of the meal does have sales tax applied to it.

      2. Regardless of how you slice and dice the bookkeeping, the beefeaters are not paying the full cost of their meal, much less the externalities.

  12. A second question is, if you’re happier taking a bus to work, would you still give up your car for weekends?

    No one doubts the efficacy of using a single fast line when both the origin and destination are well used.

    However, the world has moved away from that. A while back.

  13. Have real severe seafood allergies. Sushi would definitely NOT make me happy (unless the nurses at Harborview were attractive during my recovery)

    Transit makes me happy … Though we do need a stand your ground law here in WA that makes it legal to shoot at cars that threaten you when crossing the street / run red lights / ignore no turn on red / etc …

    1. And while we’re at it buses. We were almost hit by a turning bus while attempting to legally cross the street yesterday (in a signaled crosswalk, with the light showing that it was an appropriate time for pedestrians to begin crossing).

  14. Have general disgust for most seafoods. And I find the very idea of sushi nauseating.

    But the prospect of a well integrated transportation system that would allow people to traverse the region quickly with minimal waits for transfers would make me happy.

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