Beyond the details of my current dispute with the DOI, what really pisses me off is the irregularity with which they pursue such matters. Just today on the tram two inspectors (in normal clothes, not the henchmen) were doing the rounds, and one guy didn’t have a valid ticket – he had a zone 1 ticket, but was travelling along the zone 2 stretch from La Trobe Uni up to at least my stop (68). He probably knew he was in trouble, because when the inspector offered to let him buy a valid ticket now, he was briefly confused – in my mind he was clearly expecting to be cited. So he went to try and buy a ticket – or at least go through the paces. Littering, I might add, as I did so – apparently it was a convenient time to clean out his pockets. Anyway, apparently he didn’t have change, so he went back to the inspector and made some brief conversation. The inspector apparently didn’t have a problem, and then ignored the offender until the next stop, where the two inspectors departed.
So, this shady guy who doesn’t have any intention of buying a valid ticket, gets off, but I’m screwed. And this is far from the first time I’ve seen this – many times the inspectors (even the henchmen in their goon squad) have ignored people without tickets simply because they look like too much trouble. Poverty women decked in torn Adidas gear, people who don’t speak English (or at least pretend not to), and so on. Curse may bland Anglo-saxon appearance and mild, helpful temperament.
I guess I should learn from this – next time the inspectors around I should just be a prick, and make it clear they’re going to get nothing but trouble out of me. Interesting, the morale’s of these stories.