He’s charismatic, optimistic, and ever so funny. We all know him for making our everyday commute to school that much less painful, as well as for his notorious one-liners, across the campus – especially those involving Lord of the Rings. Numerous Facebook, blog posts, and tweets have been dedicated to this amazing individual. This week I sat down with Addy, our adored UBC T.C.P., to get to know a little bit more about who he is behind that hilarious character we all know him for. Check out his Facebook page!
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Addy. Music is technically my life. I play music, I listen to a lot of music, and like I’ve been saying to people: Earthlings, you guys have the best music in the universe. We thought we were the best, but no, you guys are. I play music, some video games, go out for walks, I ride my the bike in the city a lot wearing a pirate hat and some buttons. I’ve been doing that since before. Always.
Why did you originally choose to be a crossing guard?
Well I didn’t choose to be a crossing guard; this is a job. I’m a traffic control person, and I’ve been working as a T.C.P. for quite a few months. This job was just thrown at me, like “OK UBC…Let’s do it.” And it was just any other normal job… Until someone came by and gave me a coffee and some banana bread. That started it all. I just was in a happy mood and played some pranks and jokes here and there and it just turned into, “Alright, I want to be a stand-up comedian, let’s try out my comedy on these guys.” So that’s how it all started.
What were your expectations in coming to UBC to be a T.C.P.?
I was hoping for an easier job at the beginning. Because I was like, “It’s pedestrians, how hard could it be?” It wasn’t about most students at UBC not caring – because that’s what everyone was telling me – I think it was just more about them not knowing about the dangers of buses in the loop. Those buses are quite dangerous. Even at 20 km/h, it can take a person out. So, it was kind of hard in the beginning, but now, it’s amazing. I don’t even have to say anything! Most people just stop, yield to buses, and my job is easy.
Why do you choose such a humorous approach to your job?
Well, I choose a humorous approach because the reality – and this is what went through my mind – is if I’m aggressive, or assertive even, to try to get people to just listen to safety issues, I didn’t think it would work because I’ve been a university student for quite a long time – I finished my BA last year – so I know that students will not, especially nowadays, listen to you if you’re trying to scream at them. I thought that maybe using a different approach, something humorous, something a little light, throw in a few words and messages of safety through whatever I do would work better. It helped, and I got a better response and it just kept building and building. And I got cookies and coffee. Just this morning, I got a free Reese Cup! It’s amazing. I want to do something for you guys now. Like get some cookies in a bucket at the end…or maybe beer… I don’t think that’s allowed.
What is the funniest or oddest story you have from being a T.C.P. at UBC?
Well, the last few days have been really odd. I feel like I’m being trolled by the buses. Because all of the sudden, you see a bus screaming down the bus loop, and it just stops in the middle to talk to somebody else. And I’ve got people stopped and they’re waiting for this last bus to go. And what else is it if it’s not a troll? So yeah, a lot of trolling going on… But other than that, my funniest story is that all of the sudden I realized that I have certain musical powers. So I change the lyrics of well-known songs and I think the funniest one was a rendition of ‘Blowing In The Wind’ which is, “How many roads must the pedestrians walk down to get to their buses/How many buses must those pedestrians get on to get to their destination?/The answer, my friends, might be on the bus./The answers might not be on the bus.” I usually sing to them when they’re walking…I don’t like doing that when they’re stopped.
I could have escaped this if I wanted to. The first few days were hard, especially Tuesdays and Thursdays because there are a lot of students coming in. But I decided to just push through. Because if you’re aggressive to students, that’s exactly what you’ll get back. I have been fortunate enough not to want to escape; at least not yet. And hopefully this goes on for some time; I like it and I like working here. I’m getting a very good response from the students. I’m getting an even better response from the adults here; they’ve started setting an example now, which wasn’t the case the first week I was working, so I’m happy with the improvement.
Do you have any final comments you have for the students of UBC?
Be safe, and this winter watch out for dragons. Because I’ve heard that the mother of dragons is on her way to free the slaves – I mean the students – from UBC. But that’s just what I heard this morning, so I don’t know. It could be true…I mean she’s pretty fierce.