Saturday, April 15, 2017

Chill Out, Boss

So management wants to know who Deke is. Why? So they can do what? Pressure me to shut up?

I've figured for a few years the bosses would be curious as to my identity, so I kept the pseudonym. It's better that way. I don't use names, nor do I believe in outright rudeness toward those in management. My words may sometimes be harsh and judgmental, but I also try to balance them with some degree of empathy. When people in power do something that is hurtful however, I tend to pounce. Sometimes I feel guilt after posting a particularly angry piece. But hey... I said in the beginning that this blog would chronicle my career. It describes how I feel "out there," and it has resonated with transit operators all over the world. I must be doing something right. It's up to those with a loud voice to shout it out when "shit ain't right."

Once again, and this time with gusto, I plead with you. If you know my identity and someone asks you who Deke is, please do NOT tell them my name. I am one of you, we are US, and I'm here for everyone who does this job.

"I cannot tell you who Deke is," you could say. "I can't remember his name anyway."

There are a thousand of us, more or less. It's hard to remember everyone's name. Please forget mine. If management figures out who I am, I fully expect to be thrust under the microscope. Any minor slip could become a major catastrophe. Why would they mess with me? Because they can, and that's the only reason they need. Anyone whose voice is out of harmony with the agency's chorus is a dangerous wedge in their stranglehold on public perception.

Funny thing is, if management used common sense and treated us with respect and dignity, my blog would have a much lighter tone. As I come up on the fourth anniversary of From The Driver Side, it's interesting to read through the posts. I've become cynical and combative. Humor has taken a back seat to frustration. I keep hoping my posts will help management see how backed into a corner we feel. Why they can't work with rather than against us, is confusing.

I don't like being a warrior. I'm peaceful in nature. I love people, especially those with whom I work. Management should be our brothers and sisters too, but seems to enjoy this Us vs. Them mentality. It's destructive, and certainly doesn't help those we all serve: the riding public.

Chill out, y'all up there on Harrison Street. We make the wheels roll, so please remove the speed bumps. I hate a bumpy ride.


  1. Go Deke!
    I'm saddened by the demise of the unions, certainly on this side of the pond, some years ago management's inertia over assaults on drivers would have led to withdrawal of labour until the situation was rectified. "Wildcat" strikes were common in the seventies, until Thatcher's evil regime stamped on the unions and rendered them toothless. In the nineties I worked in public service, where union representatives' work was scrutinised to the Nth degree searching for the tiniest anomaly and excuse to reprimand and discipline.
    I'm with you in spirit brother.

    1. Thanks my Scottish friend! Always appreciate your insights. Time for you to revisit the Oregon coast so we can clink glasses once again!

  2. I've been trimet over a year now and have now experienced what is like to be on the front lines as a trimet transit driver. This new fare policy management put in place is a complete joke! They spent 4 hours in recertification trying to convince us their new policy is going to eliminate the threat of some Crack addict or mentally person is going to be less of a threat by simply saying ok! You couldn't make this shit up! It amazes me how trimet management is able to get away with suspending drivers over this nonsense!