A frustrated tipster wrote in with some concerns about the trend of AT&T Park-bound Caltrain riders who seem to want to start the game fun early.

The guy next to me had a baby in one hand and an open can of Tecate in the other. They have no respect to the fact that some of us actually work in the peninsula and live in SF….Even with my headphones I am unable to drone out their screaming and yelling. They basically act like it’s a party train with their open beer bottles and rowdy behavior. They usually stand in the aisles drinking (some have red cups but most have bottles or cans).

Last week was the worst though. The guy next to me had a baby in one hand and an open can of Tecate in the other. He was yelling over people to his friend who was sitting a few rows down. Oh, and in the bike car some kids were literally sitting on the floor with a carton of juice and flasks of liquor.

Which, hey! Did you know that you’re allowed to drink on Caltrain? Now you do. According to Caltrain spokesperson Christine Dunn, “trains have historically had bar cars, and, long ago” (at which moment we space out in some sort of Mad Men fantasy) “even Caltrain had a bar car. It doesn’t any more, but allowing drinking on trains is a tradition, and we haven’t had any problems with it.”

Well, there have been some problems: In 2006, Caltrain had to start banning drinking after 9 PM after “several events involving disruptive behavior by intoxicated passengers.”

Dunn’s advice for our frustrated tipster: “if things are out of hand, go to the train’s conductor. He’s in charge of the train, in the same way that a captain is in charge of his ship. He’s in contact with the transit police, and has the power to eject people from the train.”

Our tipster suggected that conductors knew to make themselves scarce on rough-and-tumble game days, saying “In fact you hardly see them checking tickets when it’s a game day. It’s almost as if they don’t want to deal with it.” Another option, if things get nutty and a conductor’s not to be found, might be to contact Caltrain transit police directly at 1-877-723-7245.

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at

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