I was really encouraged by this article in the Seattle Times: “Riders Pack Buses in Record Numbers“. I am a huge supporter of mass transit – major props to anyone who takes the bus to work every day. However, doing this favor for the environment can sometimes come at a cost. I have had some less-than-pleasant experiences lately while on my way to and from work. Cases in point:

A few days ago, a rather large, not-so-good-smelling man hopped on the bus and was absolutely convinced that he could fit into the 6-inch space on the bench seat between me and the woman next to me (this was a 3-person bench and he was #4). It wasn’t pretty. I ended up standing, while he and the woman I’d been sitting next to shared a number of 4-letter words with each other.

My bus driver was reading the newspaper while he was driving one morning last week. This made me nervous.

I took a seat next to a nice-looking gentleman one night a couple of weeks ago. I pulled out my book and before I could get my headphones on (yes, I am one of those anti-social bus-riders), he asked what I was reading. I told him it was a collection of poems by Sylvia Plath. He launched into a speech about the merits of strong, intelligent, well-read women. I buried my nose deeper in my book and tried to make it apparent that I wasn’t up for chatting. He took the hint and stopped talking to me, but then began to mutter to himself about how much he loves Yeats’ poetry and about how his high school English teacher was such a bastard. Creepy.

But, woes aside, taking the bus has its definite perks. I get a lot more reading done now than I did in my pre-bus days, I never have to worry about finding a parking spot downtown, and I’m decreasing my ecological footprint. And so I ride.

One Comment

  1. Aaron J. Esposito says:

    yes… respect goes out… the bus can be a shit-hole indeed… but the amount of madness you can witness makes it a riot… not to mention the effectiveness and cost savings… stinky bus riders are not bad… just keep an eye on the mentally disturbed… glad to see you post a bus rant… and may you continue your entertaining charades on public transit systems