Lloyd, the Google Bus Driver

Original Post: June 2016

Lloyd, the 8:35pm Civic/Haight/Stanyan Google bus driver was one of the first bus drivers to shuttle me home from Mountain View. He greets every single passenger with a “Hello my man!” or “How’s it going?!” and answers with “Welcome aboard!” or “Alright, alright!” He fist bumps every single passenger with a big toothy smile on his face and exudes the most authentic happiness I have ever seen from any human, let alone any bus driver. He is a legend amongst Googlers and we all look forward to taking his bus.

I left on a 5:34pm shuttle last Friday. I had not taken this shuttle before yet. To my wonderful surprise, Lloyd was my bus driver. He had driven me home the night before as well. As we pulled away from the curb, Lloyd waves to the bus station attendee: “See you in a few hours!” I suddenly realized that Lloyd sits through 5+ hours of traffic every single evening, and possibly additional hours in the morning if he also has a morning route. As soon as he drops the 5:34pm group off in San Francisco, he turns right back around and battles the bottleneck traffic that clogs up 101 to scoop up the next batch of Googlers.

“According to my Google Maps, it’s going to be 39 minutes until we touch down at our first stop. So in the meantime and in between time, kick back, relax, it’s going to be a nice time. I’ll talk to you folks in a minute. Peace out,” Lloyd cheerfully announces over the bus’s PA system.

Lloyd’s smiling face, delightful bus announcements, and fist bumps put a spring in my steps. This extra spritz of friendliness inspires me to be a kinder person. When he drops us off, he announces over the intercom, “We are now approaching our first stop at Market Street. If you are getting off, don’t forget to gather your belongings. And remember, this bus ride was brought to you by the wonderful people at Google, saving the world one bus ride at a time. Stay cool, like the other side of the pillow, and see you next time.” And with another fist bump, I depart into the night, glad that there are still humble and good people in this world.

May 2019 Update

3 years later, I no longer take Lloyd’s shuttle to get home. But I walked by his Gbus boarding passengers at the Googleplex on Friday afternoon and sure enough, he was still fist bumping every single person who stepped onto his bus. Just think if everyone brought 120% of themselves out of bed every day like Lloyd. I would feel so inspired to be my best self, regardless of where I am and what I’m doing. Of all of my interactions in my 7+ years of working at tech companies, I most vividly remember how great Lloyd made me feel every time I was boarding his bus to go home.