The next Annoying Burgher

A Mt. Washington man, tired of the noise created by buses on his street, has parked his car, legally, in such a way that the buses can no longer access the bus stop near his home and therefore the Port Authority had to remove the street from the bus route.

The result is the man is happy, and the elderly residing in the senior citizens high-rise nearby now have to walk up to Grandview Avenue, walkers, oxygen tanks and all, to reach the nearest bus stop.

The man, named George Janusz, has lived in his home since 1982 and says that he’s complained about the noise the buses make when idling, and he also has a problem if they DON’T idle because that means they have to shut off their engines and starting them back up sounds like a “jet taking off.”

“I am the victim. I am not the bad guy,” said Mr. Janusz, who … said he sympathizes with the senior citizens.

Aw. That’s nice. Sympathy. [Golf clap].

My thoughts and questions on this:

1. How long have the buses been running up that way, if Mr. Janusz lived there since 1982? Why is it now a problem? Did they just not run up there before or did they get louder or did he just become difficult?  I’m seriously asking.

2. I have no idea how loud a bus engine idling is, but if it’s loud enough to be bothersome to a person inside a house, that sucks.  I also have no idea if a bus driver starting up the engine of a bus is as loud as a jet engine. I’m guessing … it’s not. Either way, like I told David Conrad (BOOM! goes the dropped name) when he was captive in my SUV of dusty momdork doom and we talked about the possibility of the wholesalers being removed from the Strip to cut down on truck noise, I believe that people should not live in the city if they don’t want city noises.  The city = loud. The suburbs and the country = quiet until the motorcycles or roosters kick in. Just my opinion. I’m not saying a city should be so loud you can’t sleep, I’m just saying expect city noises in the city, that’s all.

3. This is a classic case of the part thinking itself more important than the whole. Sure, Mr. Janusz is happy now, but the residents of the high-rise are trekking up a hill to catch their bus. Thank goodness Mr. Janusz is sympathetic to the elderly and will work with the city to find a way that he can be comfortable with the bus service being restored to the street.

Oh, wait.

Mr. Janusz said restoring service wouldn’t sit well with him, even if the buses don’t lay over outside his house.

“I like it the way it is,” he said.

Oh, well, we must keep Mr. Janusz happy and ONLY Mr. Janusz, then. Screw everybody else. Mr. Janusz likes it this way. Suck that oxygen, Grandma, and start hiking.

He is the next Annoying Burgher for his “me is more important than all of you” attitude and for his “I have a car and I don’t need to take the bus, so screw you old people who don’t have cars” attitude. His crown is in the mail and by crown I mean a pair of shorts with a bullseye on the seat so the Karma Boomerang will have good aim when it circles back around.

You weren’t the bad guy, Mr. Janusz, but you became him.


  1. Bojack
    May 12, 2010 6:32 pm

    BTW, I live 1 block from AGH; I have the copters, fireworks, sirens, and occasional 9MM, but it’s my choice!

    I didn’t buy a house on a quiet street THEN have the idiots at the Port Authority ruin it!

  2. gunnlino
    May 12, 2010 6:42 pm

    Again I’m late to the party, but I just spent a week in Seattle, no noise, no fumes, They have trolly buses, ie; looking like a
    ” regular ” bus but with overhead wires and contacts much like the bumper cars at K’Wood.
    Lukey, look into that, K?

  3. Zach
    May 12, 2010 6:49 pm

    Passive aggressive acts aside, you wouldn’t believe how loud those buses are when they’re idling. We used to live next to a bus stop in Highland Park and it was damn hard to sleep through and nearly impossible to fall asleep to. Every. Single. Night. It was infuriating. City noise is one thing, and buses driving by is one thing, but this is another. Particularly because it’s hard to tell where buses wait and idle if you don’t know the neighborhood.

    I have a lot of sympathy for this guy, particularly because there doesn’t seem to be a great solution other than quieter buses.

  4. Mike
    May 12, 2010 6:54 pm


    “The Port Authority not being responsive to (potential) customer needs/wants/problems? Really? I’m shocked.

    Hypothetical situation: A private (gasp!) company runs the bus services in the city.”

    If that happens they would be just as unresponsive, but everybody would be rallying around the private citizen / little guy and decrying the privatization of America and faceless corporations.

  5. Bojack
    May 12, 2010 7:05 pm


    GO PENS!!!!!!!!!!!!! :-)

  6. Bojack
    May 12, 2010 7:12 pm

    @19:28- 1st-


  7. Bojack
    May 12, 2010 7:18 pm


  8. Karen
    May 12, 2010 7:51 pm

    Wait. WHY did they change the route again? What a d-bag.

  9. Bojack
    May 12, 2010 8:12 pm


  10. Bojack hates texts
    May 12, 2010 8:36 pm

    Bojack<—– takes double shot Scotch, 2 Xanax

  11. Tinare
    May 12, 2010 9:27 pm

    I’m not a copy editor, but both buses and busses are correct according to Merriam-Webster.

    Main Entry: 1bus
    Pronunciation: \ˈbəs\
    Function: noun
    Inflected Form(s): plural bus·es also bus·ses
    Usage: often attributive
    Etymology: short for omnibus
    Date: circa 1909
    1 a : a large motor vehicle designed to carry passengers usually along a fixed route according to a schedule b : automobile
    2 : a small hand truck
    3 a : bus bar b : a set of parallel conductors in a computer system that forms a main transmission path
    4 : a spacecraft or missile that carries one or more detachable devices (as warheads)

    And Webster’s and American Heritage. Maybe you’re not as good as you think?

    busses definition bus·ses (bus′iz)


    Webster’s New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio.
    Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

    bus·ses (bŭsˈĭz)

    A plural of bus.
    The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  12. Bojack hates texts
    May 12, 2010 9:49 pm

    Patrick Roy Halak

    Bojack<– another double Scotch

  13. cp
    May 12, 2010 9:59 pm

    We’ve got a bus stop outside our house. The “talking buses” stop there. You can hear the whoosh pop of the brake and hear the recorded voice say “downtown.” It’s gone on for years, and to the point where if we even do hear the bus do its whoosh pop, we all pop out with “downtown” right along with the woman…

  14. 7000th Nerd Girl
    May 12, 2010 10:41 pm

    I wonder whether he did complain. The quote is “You can only bite your tongue for so long.” i.e. NOT say anything.

    Anyway, cp’s comment made me nostalgic. I used to live half a block away from a route with the talky-buses, and I kinda miss them in a weird way. “DOWNTOWN.” I could hear it from my living room. But I didn’t flip out because, IMO, life’s too short.

  15. Bojack hates texts
    May 12, 2010 10:46 pm

    Listen up!! In small words so y’all can understand!!

    It’s incessant!! NOT a momentary sound!

    It’s loud!!!

    Like a bulldozer, running, and running, and running!!
    Every day, ALL day!!!


  16. Magnus Patris
    May 12, 2010 11:30 pm

    Yoi! Hey Ginny, I think I have a suggestion for the next annoying ‘burgher.

  17. jmarinara
    May 13, 2010 1:32 am

    The guy parked his car legally, he has a right to not be totally annoyed in his own home, and if a senior citizen has to figure out some new way to travel . . .well . . . oh freakin’ well. They’re not children for crying out loud. Learn to drive, call a cab, ask your friends/neighbors/children/grandchildren for help. Figure it out.

    Life is tough, get a helmet, and let a man enjoy some peace when he’s at home for goodness sake.

    Might I also add that the port authority could have easily avoided this if they weren’t complete douchebags. They’re getting what they deserve in this public relations nightmare. Screw them and the tax subsidized nearly free rides they offer as if it’s societies responsibility to figure out how to transport people to begin with.

    I’m with this guy, good for him.

  18. Nick
    May 13, 2010 7:43 am

    I read this article yesterday and could not believe that this guys was serious. How could you do that knowing that you are making all of those seniors walk up the hill to get the bus? I agree with point number 2, don’t live in the city if you can’t take the noise.

    I use to live in Oakland and when I first moved there I could not sleep at night because of all the ambulances, helicopters, and crazy drunk kids but you know what? After about 2 weeks I got used to it and it hardly even bothered me after that.

  19. Homer
    May 13, 2010 8:03 am

    God forbid senior citizens will actually be forced to get some exercise.

  20. Bojack hates texts
    May 13, 2010 8:14 am

    I am sitting here in shock! NOT cuz of the Penguins, &^$#%$!$%, but because of the apparent
    number of clueless yo-yo’s who post here and presumably
    drive cars, vote, have kids, etc!

    The morons who jump to attack this guy with actually NO
    IDEA of what they are talking about i.e.- “…I lived in Oakland..”
    “…I live near a hospital…” “ I think he’s over-reacting”

    You have NO CLUE!!

    and one wonders why these idiots keep getting elected….

    not anymore! Stupid is as stupid does.

  21. Me
    May 13, 2010 8:52 am

    My father, who passed away at 83, needed a walker for the last 5 years of his life. My mother is currently recovering from a broken hip. May everyone who doesn’t understand the position of senior citizens live to be 90. Just sayin’.

    And Bucdaddy — Buss my arse —

    • noun (pl. buses; US also busses) 1 a large motor vehicle carrying customers along a fixed route. 2 Computing a distinct set of conductors within a computer system, to which pieces of equipment may be connected in parallel.

    • verb (buses or busses, bused or bussed, busing or bussing) 1 transport or travel in a bus. 2 N. Amer. clear (dirty crockery) in a restaurant or cafeteria.

    — ORIGIN shortening of OMNIBUS.

    Hilarity ensuing indeed. But not the way you intended. Perhaps you should have followed your own advice first?

  22. Monty
    May 13, 2010 9:15 am

    Can we all agree to stop using the word “douchebag” unless we’re referring to a male who (1) pops his collar, (2) says “Bro,” (3) has Jeff Reed hair, (4) is orange, or (4) purses his lips in pictures?

    We’re ruining the meaning.

  23. Sleemo
    May 13, 2010 9:46 am

    Gotta side with the Annoying Burgher candidate here. When we lived in the city, buses would FLY down our 25-mph road at 40 or 45 (god help any kids who were playing further down the block), and every. single. window. in the house would rattle. For everyone saying, “Don’t live in the city!”–we don’t anymore, we moved to the ‘burbs. However, not everyone can manage that, and besides, aren’t “we” supposed to be *encouraging* people to live w/in city limits?

    Also agree w/ every. single. comment. about what fraktards work at and run PAT.

  24. burghgal
    May 13, 2010 9:52 am

    I don’t think the senior citizens should be forced to hoof up and down the hills on Mt. Washington.

    I also don’t think the buses should be allowed to idle near his home for 30 minutes or more.

    Let the nasty bus sit somewhere else.

  25. johnaz6312
    May 13, 2010 10:01 am

    Be happy that you have a bus system that works back there. Here in Phoenix it is just plain lousy. More and more people are moving here & they keep cutting routes due to budgetry problems. And alot of the drivers are just lazy no good asses that need to see the unemployment line. The policy here is that if the driver is AHEAD of schedule they pull over & wait till they get back on schedule again. Even if its for 30 seconds.
    The 19 miles of light rail they have is pretty good though, MOST of the time.

  26. naten53
    May 13, 2010 11:23 am

    Hasn’t anyone looked up the 41E route and asked a big what the effie?,+Pittsburgh,+PA&sll=40.43434,-80.021973&sspn=0.002315,0.004125&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=145+Sweetbriar+St,+Pittsburgh,+Allegheny,+Pennsylvania+15211&ll=40.438194,-80.021732&spn=0.00463,0.00825&t=h&z=17

    What about has anyone looked at google maps? The street doesn’t look like a dead-end to me. It does show what google incorrectly calls “Duquesne Heights Community Center.” Looking at the Allegheny County Assessment website, SWEETBRIAR STREET LLP owns all the lots there. This was ”last used 12 years ago for a grocery store” and where there are new town houses being put in.

    My best guess is that the buses used to turn around and park in that parking lot. (Google maps street view for Lupton street is actually in that parking lot and shows a coach bus parked there.) The parking lot that is now becoming townhouses doesn’t look like there will be a space for the buses to turn around on their ridiculous looking route (based off of property assessment aerial view). None of the other streets that connect to Sweetbriar look like they can handle a bus turning onto it. If you are going to blame anyone, blame the city for letting SWEETBRIAR STREET LLP for taking away probably the only place the bus can turn around on the street. From previous comments about the construction site and the google satellite image, it looks like there is no other place for the bus to safely turn around to me.

  27. Dave
    May 13, 2010 11:44 am

    Just curious with all the traffic you get on this site why not add google adsense and make some money off of it. Just a thought.

  28. BlueNumber2
    May 13, 2010 12:02 pm

    How inefficient are the PAT bus routes that so many buses (or busses if you prefer) are idling for so long? I understand that sometimes they may finish their route early and that timing matters but can’t they make better use of their “idle” time than sitting around for 20+ minutes outside of, apparently, everyone’s house?

  29. Linda
    May 13, 2010 12:31 pm

    I have to agree with Mr. Janusz on this one. The buses are loud and spewing out fumes. If they parked outside my house for 20 minutes, I wouldn’t be able to breathe and would end up like those old folks on oxygen.

    PAT is missing the point here and the whole mess can easily be solved. Continue the layover on Fingal where it is now. Then go down Sweetbriar, pick up the old folks, turn around, and continue the route.

    They make it seem like all or nothing and that does not have to be the case.

    Also, I’m pretty sure that photo op was staged to gain sympathy. I’ve driven past that residence many times and have never seem anyone outside let along a convey of elders headed out to catch the bus.

  30. Al Lambrini
    May 13, 2010 3:03 pm

    If you can’t handle the noise of a bus you should move to the cranberry or some other farming village sheesh

  31. Still A, Fan
    May 13, 2010 10:15 pm

    i dont have a dog in this fight either but i empathize with the guy. we had a shool bus for senior high idling on our street 3 houses down from us waiting to make their first pickup. it lasted about 2 weeks until some phonecalls took care of it. it’s just plain crazy at 6:15 in the AM to do that when your kid doesn’t wake up until 7:30. so i get it. i also fell bad about the seniors. sounds like a better solution just needs to be found. something like designated bus idling spots.

  32. Peg
    May 14, 2010 3:28 pm

    Team annoying Burger, too. No way would I want to tolerate the fumes from buses idling all the time. Get some special short buses up there that can turn around and run on NG. I doubt the seniors can fill a big bus anyway. Unless it’s Bingo night.