Bus Panickers

From the Dictionary of Snook: “Bus Panickers” – A name for idiots on public transport who seem to worry that they’ll be trapped on the bus forever. You can usually spot one by his reluctance to move down the back of the bus (away from the back doors), or by her insistance on getting up five minutes before her stop and pushing her way to the doors, without regard to the fact that half the people she just shoved out of the way are getting off there too. I hate bus panickers.


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  1. Oh yes, they bite. I use a similar term for another group of idiots I dislike, “the door crowd”. Same idea but specifically on trains. If you get on a morning peak hour train from Central to Museum, for example, these are the people who crowd the carriage right in front of the door. Looks like a packed train, but once you squeeze through the door crowd, there are plenty seats both upstairs, downstairs and often even just in that first bit (“the lounge room”) once you get past them. They are either people who need to be first through the turnstiles, or the nervous types who think they’ll be trapped on the train (train panickers?).


  2. Oh, I forgot about the train panickers! You’re so right. The door crowd sucks.

    What do they think, the train/bus is going to pull away before they get off? I’ve only ever once had the door shut as I was trying to go through it, and that was only because the stupid bus panickers were crowding the door so badly the driver couldn’t see who was coming or going!

  3. I hate bus/train panickers who plough through everyone to get *on* the damn thing – they’re so scared the vehicle is going to take off without them they push past everyone trying to get off. Bah I hate them!

  4. In a similar vein, the “luggage lurker” who hovers for 10 minutes directly at the edge of the carousel so that he can instantly grab his precious bag the second it arrives. Never mind that people who actually do have bags going by can’t get around the lurker.

  5. I’m picturing a Venn diagram here with circles for bus panickers, the train door crowd, and the luggage lurkers. And I’m pretty sure the overlap is, oh, 100%.

  6. I have a confession to make. I am 50% bus panicker. I am definitely NOT a door hoverer, but I do get ancy and try to move towards the doors when the bus approaches my stop. Or, if I’m seated on the inside of a double seat, I’ll do the obvious fidgeting around so the other person knows that they’ll have to get up and let me out at the next stop. Partly because I’m afraid of not being able to get off in time, and partly because I don’t want the bus to have to sit there and wait as I climb over everyone and slowly make my way to the door. I prefer to be prepared and make a quick exit. I know it’s annoying, but I can’t help myself.

  7. Eileen, let’s stand up and be proud of our ancy ways. Bus Panickers UNITE! It’s not an irrational fear; I’ve seen trains and busses leave while someone is still trying to get out, yelling at the bus driver to stop. It’s not like I block the door, or refuse to move down the bus, just like Eileen, I’d rather be prepared for exit and not have to push and shove or make anyone wait as I make my way to the door.

    I am not, however, a luggage lurker.

  8. I think you are *occasionally* justified in getting up early, like if it’s an unusual stop and not many people are getting off. But I live near Central Railway Station, and it’s only a dozen stops down to Circular Quay (which is a major tourist and transport hub). Therefore at every single stop, several people are going to be getting on and off. I can’t count the number of times the inside person next to me is like, “Excuse me, I’m getting off!” And I’m like, “So’s me and half the bus, so just hold your horses LADY!” (Except I’m a wuss so I say it nicer.) And then I force them to sit there and wet themselves with bus panic anxiety. That’s always fun.

  9. I definitely noticed the train door crowding in Sydney, as it’s not as common in Melbourne. What is it with Sydneysiders? 😉

  10. More tourists, maybe? Every time I take the train there seems to be a group of loud American college students blocking the doors telling stories that all seem to begin “I was so f**kin’ wasted…” and embarrassing the crap out of me.

  11. I was away over the weekend and encountered a lift panicker in the hotel. Three people in the left, and she was trying to push out past me before the doors had opened. I had to say calmly, “It’s OK, I’m getting out here too.” And even then she nearly pushed me out in her rush to get to the reception desk.

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