The Face of Ms. Muni Voice Revealed!

Squeal!  Eye on Blogs posted a video report about Muni street name mispronounciations.

The highlight?  Seeing the face of Ms. Muni Voice herself.  Feast your eyes on MS. DONNA REED:

Photo stolen from SF Chronicle

Swoon!  She’s just as friendly, authoritative, and subtly seductive as her voice implies.

Donna works for DRI, the company responsible for Muni’s digital announcements, in Houston, Texas.  Her thick Texan drawl is the reason you keep missing your bus stop.

I really love the way she says “Cabrillo.”  Kah-BRILL-ohhhh.  What’s your fave?

26 Responses to “The Face of Ms. Muni Voice Revealed!”

  1. M.A.C. says:

    They’ve been mispronouncing Lyon for years.

  2. brian w. says:

    god damn it! it’s “mispronunciation,” not mispronounciation. even the TV news folks got it wrong.'s_law in action?

  3. Joel says:

    poh TRERo

    • dogpatch says:

      ah.. poh TRERo is my favorite.
      i want to know the voice of the guy at the potrero cross walk between 22nd and 23rd. by the hospital. my all time fav.

      “Pa TRERo, mid block crossing…. Pa Trero, now crossing pa TRERo”

  4. sharrocker says:

    Va-len-sha. But RIP 26, we will hear that one way less

    • monkeeknifefight says:

      Natives have told me that’s the way their grandparents pronounced it.
      My girlfriend always called it “the mythical 26 Valencia” since it never came when you needed it, and then it would pass you when you didn’t.

  5. m says:

    Oh thank god for confirmation, I took the 48 for a while and kept wondering if I’d been saying “Valencia” wrong for the past year.

  6. Junk Thief says:

    I love her saying Embarcadera in place of Embarcadero.

  7. Jesse says:

    She pronounces Sansome as San-so-me… I thought that was a myth, is it actually pronounced that way?

    • SFDoggy says:

      No. It is pronounced San-Sum — I have never heard it pronounced any other way (but I don’t ride MUNI).

  8. arinell says:


  9. plumpy says:

    She’s the same one who does “Please hold on. Please set your luggage cart brakes to on.”, right? Frequent SFO travelers, are you with me? I’ve always thought it was the same voice, but was never able to confirm it… until now?

  10. Andy says:


    Yeah. Someone from Houston has no excuse to mess up Spanish words, they’re closer to Mexico than we are.

  11. Jim says:

    Ar Gwell-oh!

    “Valencha” is the way old timers said it, since there were more Italians than Latinos back then. (“ci” is pronounced “ch” in Italian, e.g. “ciao”)

  12. BC says:

    Was SO excited to see this story… and was wondering why she kept saying “NO” for “NO-E” on the 24-Divis.

    But what about the man? There’s a mans voice that says, “Please hold on”, “please exit through the rear doors”, “Please reserve the front seats for seniors and persons with disabilities”, and probably a few other things… who is he? Also a Houstonian?

    I also wonder if Donna is the voice of the Houston bus/light rail system.

    • Brillo says:

      They rerecorded the man too! Now he says “people with disabilities” instead of “persons with disabilities.”

  13. Dan says:

    The Numbers song “Human Replace” remember that?

  14. Greg Z says:

    Yikes. This is a good time for “ask a native”.

    Perhaps it’s “culturally insensitive” (like natives care?) but we grew up pronouncing Arguello and Cabrillo with the hard L sounds so it’s nice to still have that bit – no matter how little – of our childhood around in this transplant town of ours.

  15. Zig says:

    I heard an AT&T commercial this morning where they pronounced Vallejo with the double LL sound

    I wanted to punch someone’s head

  16. fermentor says:

    On the 48 outbound, it sounded like “Kwi ni tara” for Quintara. If there is a local way, it’s probably not that.

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  19. Thom says:

    I think she was the first voice I heard in San Francisco: “Embarcadero Station… K… K… Outbound!”