In a press conference this morning Mayor Lee intended to unveil a brand new fleet of 62 biodiesel-electric hybrid Muni coaches. Unfortunately for the Mayor and the Municipal Railway's public relations team, the flagship bus broke down while carrying an all-star load of city officials from the Pier 48 news conference back to work at City Hall.
According to Bay City News, Mayor Lee and his fellow riders had to go through the always-frustrating exercise of hopping off and waiting for the next one. For the mayor, who is normally chauffeured around town in his official Chevy Volt, this must have been an especially trying time. Having done it several times ourselves, we're guessing he strolled into his next meeting 20 minutes late and announced, "Sorry, everybody. Muni broke down," with an exasperated sigh.
According to Muni spokesman Paul Rose, the untimely bus malfunction had
something to do with the vehicle's hydraulic system. Update: Rose and Bay City News updated their story later. Apparently, a sensor was incorrectly showing that the rear door was open, preventing it from driving away. While the whole thing seems like a bad omen for the future of San Francisco public transit, now that Mayor Lee has finally had to experience our collective Muni nightmare, maybe he'll have a little compassion the next time he's looking over the budget. At the very least he got some standard San Francisco cocktail party banter out of it.
To counter the bad press, we humbly suggest Mayor Lee take the stage at the next Muni Diaries Live event. Then the joke of a public transit system can come full circle.