In the last 3 months I have had the superb opportunity of traveling on public transit, luckily for me not only once a week, but almost everyday. Can you sense the sarcasm? Thankfully I have recently moved to an area where I am now a short distance walk from everything I need and finally be rid of the cow herding, foul smelling, time consuming, delights that the bus has to offer. Now, normally I am a person whose glass is half full, so let me first point out some of the good things about the bus.
The bus is an excellent place for “people watching”. I can’t really think of any other place where you get such a great mix of people all in one spot. You get the business, student, and working class. You also get people who are uptight, frigid, friendly, laid back, nervous, shy, loud (there are many of these people), well dressed, half dressed, sloppy, rude, aloof, impatient, patient, the list can go on forever. What’s interesting however, is taking note on how people react to different situations. One common situation, is when sitting next to a stranger. Person ‘A’ gets on the bus, and there’s only one spot to sit down, but person ‘A’ will have to sit down beside person ‘B’. By this point person ‘A’ will have already displayed the oh-so-familiar glance from head to toe followed by the judgment look. By reading the emotions on person ‘A’s’ face you can often times guess what that person will do; will person ‘A’ sit down beside person ‘B’ or will person ‘A’ grudgingly shuffle to the back of the bus and stand? This is just one example of how people watching can make the bus ride home a little more enjoyable.
Another great thing about the bus is the money you can save by not driving your vehicle. Gas prices are stupidly expensive these days, and with the high insurance rates, taking the bus can seem like a good alternative. Heck, its getting to the point where paying a cab fare is probably more worth while than driving your own car. Maybe people should install gas fare meters in their car to get an idea of how much money they spend per km on gas.
Now that I’ve covered the good things about the bus let me mention the obvious bad things. I really dislike it when I get on the bus, and the air has that stench of regurgitation. Late at night, maybe this is understandable; people come home from the bar and feel a bit nauseous. However at 3 o’clock in the afternoon on a Wednesday it’s rather unpleasant. Another unpleasant experience on the bus is when it gets overly crowded, and you’re forced to jam pack yourself so tight, that you can’t help but say “moo”.
There is also the matter of public transit etiquette. First off I’d like to say that people who don’t follow this etiquette really piss me off, these are probably some of my biggest pet peeves ever. The number one thing that really makes me angry is when the bus is obviously full, and people still feel the need to put their bag on the seat beside them. Now unless you have proof of fair payment for your bag, move the fucking thing out of the way and let someone sit beside you. Something similar to this, are the people who sit on the outside seat and leave the inside seat empty. Why do you have to be such a snob as to make it difficult for people to sit beside you? I’m sorry but I am not going to slide my ass across your face in order to sit down, I am going to politely ask you to move over. For those people who throw garbage on the floor, I didn’t see a sign on the side of the bus that says “mobile trash can”. Also, when the bus is full, why get on and stand in the aisle at the FRONT of the bus? Are the people getting on after you supposed to crawl through the windows? Perhaps I sound overly perturbed, but the above mentioned is just common sense and decent courtesy.
All in all, the bus is an ok alternative for those who don’t have a car, or for those who don’t feel like bending over for the gas companies. Its too bad that a lot of the people who take the bus are about as smart as a glove. Well maybe that’s a little bit harsh, but many of them are pretty darn ignorant. At least these people often times provide a bit of entertainment for those of us who don’t carry portable DVD players.
- Ride Me
- by Dijita
- Published on November 1st, 2003
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