Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bus Etiquette

Ian posted a fabulous list of bus etiquette tips yesterday.  Go read it, leave him a comment, and then come back here and tell me your favorite public transportation story in my comments.

I've had many, many adventures on public transit.  I actually have a tendency to attract truly bizarre and awkward situations like a magnet.  I was once even the victim of a "random act of evangelization"on an early Monday morning train commute.  But that's a story for another time.

My latest story, you ask?  Well, one day last week I had the immense pleasure of riding the bus with a young gentleman who was proudly (and loudly) proclaiming to the world that he'd been twice expelled from his designated high school - once because he was high on mushrooms and bit the assistant principal.  (I'd have doubted that last bit of his story as posturing and bravado to impress the cute girl he was talking with, but his friend volunteered it, not him.)  He then went on to expound at length on the topic of his new vocational high school - the only one in the city that would admit him given his umm, history.  He spoke at length about his theory that the trick is to make friends with a couple of the teachers - preferably at least one who is also an administrator.  He should have, after all, he informed the bus at large, been expelled at least four more times from the vocational high school, but he was "untouchable" because he was friends with Mr. So and So, who was in charge.

Despite my collection of stories, most days I really don't mind that transit is my method of travel.  I even spend my time "bus reading" - finding it a meaningful way for me to create space for reading and thinking and prayer.  But, if you'd caught me on that day last week, which continued with a truly lovely set of teenaged boys hitting each other in a show of machismo, to see who could make the other flinch, while cursing loudly every other word, I probably would have quite comfortably discussed with you how little in that moment I cared about global warming and the troubles of multi-car families for traffic and the environment, and happily day dreamed of the days when I drove my own car in relative peace.