The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Oh, L No!: Share your CTA horror story

By Sarah Cobarrubias in Arts & Entertainment on Oct 6, 2011 7:20PM

Photo by Clark Maxwell
Bodily fluids, sexual gestures, shadowy stalkers - we’ve all had our fair share of cringe-worthy CTA experiences. Now there’s a site where ‘L’ riders can share their bizarre transit memories.

We heard about it through the Reader yesterday, but Oh, L No! has been around for a couple months now and is finally starting to pick up speed. It’s accumulated a couple dozen posts, including stories relaying a Pink Line stabbing, a stripping bag lady, ShakeWeighting, old ladies being chased by a German shepherd, and Jason Voorhees pacing the aisles. There’s even an appeal to end station announcements and establish “a silent CTA.”

Our favorite so far is Steamy Pile, in which a mound of leaking bags turns out to be a homeless woman squatting for a pee. Sad or funny? You decide. But the stories aren’t entirely negative, and you should feel free to pass along heartwarming accounts (that smooth-talking conductor on the Red Line comes to mind).

The site allows you to sort stories by L line, a feature that may become more useful as more people submit. It also features audio versions of some of these stories, which were provided by Vocalo. And you can take part in a poll that broaches one of Chicago’s greatest debates: “Is it spelled 'L' or 'EL'?”