There was a bit of excitement on the train today…

Apparently, before I boarded at Mountain View, this guy got into a bit of an altercation with the fare inspector. He had a 10-ride ticket, but hadn’t validated it, and the fare inspector and he got into it. He was told to get off the train at Mountain View. Keep in mind that being on board without a valid ticket is an ~$250 fine. Fast forward to me boarding…

I got on the train and took my seat. I had no idea that anything had happened. I managed to sit right next to the guy, so I got front row seats. Apparently he got off the train, validated his ticket, and got back on. The fare inspector saw him get on, and pointed to him and said “You! We need to talk.” The guy ignored him. The inspector left the train.

We’re still sitting there, doors open. Everyone’s looking around like “Why aren’t we leaving?” The fare inspector returns with the conductor, and says “That’s the guy”, pointing to him. The conductor says “You! Get off the train.” To which the guy replies “No, I’m going to San Jose”. Back and forth this continues until the conductor says “Get off the train now, the nice way, or I’ll have to call the cops to have you removed. If the cops come, you’re going to be arrested and fined $1000.” The guy is like “Well then you jus’ gonna hafta call da cops, I ain’t goin nowhere”

The conductor radioed to base, “We’re gonna need the police to come out here and remove someone from the train.” They reply “Here, or in San Jose?” He says “Right here.” They get to calling the cops. The offender decided they were serious and it wasn’t worth it, and got off the train finally.

Amazing, all they wanted him to do was to get off the train and take the next one. Basically to discourage people from thinking they can just validate the tickets when they finally get inspected. I’m torn between being angry that they hold up the entire train for a $3 fare, and being amused at how stupid this guy was.

What do you think?

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