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Friday, January 15, 2010

More Bus Rules; or I’ll Take the Bus, You Take the Streets, and We’ll Have This Place Running Properly in No Time

Here it is, the end of the week already, and the excitement is palpable. Will the downstairs neighbors continue their late-night guitar lessons? Will the cat upstairs ever stop screaming? Will my supply of tequila hold out?

And what about Naomi?

For answers to this and much, much more, let us consult the iPod, shall we?

As I do every Friday, I cling to the idea that the morning’s playlist during my commute has prophetic portents.

Why not?

Just a Song Before I Go by Crosby, Stills & Nash
I Bet You Look Good On the Dance Floor by the Arctic Monkeys
The Idiot Kings by Soul Coughing
Third Stone from The Sun by Jimi Hendrix
The Fear by Lily Allen
A Perfect Twist by Mike Patton

Judging from the list, I would say that this arctic monkey is taking a trip, although I resent the idea that I am an idiot and will write a letter of complaint to myself just as soon as I get the chance.

Speaking of letters of complaint, it’s time for my semi-yearly letter to the Metropolitan Transit Commission, the one in which I suggest ways in which they could improve my bus-riding satisfaction.

They have yet to implement my suggestions, but I remain hopeful.

My current list, ready for an immediate cut-and-paste situation on their part, is as follows:

• No staring at your fellow passengers. If you can’t watch me out of the corner of your eye, try wearing mirrored sunglasses and then staring.

• One ticket, one seat. In other words, your bag does not get its own place on the bus. First-time transgressors will be assigned an incredibly large man to sit next to them for a week. The second time your bag occupies a seat, it will be passed around and pillaged. The third time this happens both you and your bag will be escorted to the edge of town and left there.

• What you believe is a surreptitious expression of gas whilst wearing headphones may not be as secretive as you thought. Trust me – that wasn’t quiet. We really can’t make a rule against flatulence any more than we can ensure you stop sucking your teeth in that annoying fashion, but perhaps you knowing that we are on to you and your gas-passing ways will deter you in the future.

• Energetically pretending to play an instrument on the bus will not lead to someone approaching you with a recording contract, nor will it garner your fellow riders’ admiration. Yes, yes, yes; when you are not on the bus you are terribly cool. We get it already.

• Wednesdays have become dull and, frankly, lack that, oh, I don't know -- je ne sais quoi. Starting immediately, Wednesday’s will be Guess What His Problem Is Day, an opportunity to not only get to know the people who sit next to you but also give you an opportunity to later stock up on the proper over-the-counter-medicines, see a doctor, and learn to better defend yourself. As Ted Nugent used to say, it’s a free-for-all, baby!

So that’s the letter to the MTC this time around. My last missive earned me a home visit with a cease-and-desist theme, so you can imagine how excited I am to drop this in the mail.

Wish me luck!

Have a lovely weekend, everyone. I’ll be here tomorrow as well!


Douglas said...

I thought the Ipod (knower of all things) was telling you to go dance like an alien.

Pearl said...

Douglas, it's all in the interpretation, iddin it? :-) I can also see it telling me to stay indoors with a large bowl of guacamole and a pitcher of margaritas.

Come to think of it, I get that impression from a lot of things. Hmmm. I must look into that some day.

But not today. :-)

MamaOtwins+1 said...

I love pretending to play instruments people - those are the ones I make exceptions for and stare at!

simplywonderful said...

at least they aren't flossing. can you imagine someone sitting next to you on the bus and their teeth juice flying out at you? when is enough, enough? good luck with all your endeavors! i hope somehow the weekend makes up for the week. (love your play list btw)

lisleman said...

love jimi - but that song was not familiar to me. While listening to it, I believe I was hearing the people on the bus in the background.

"...it will be passed around and pillaged." - excellent idea.

Diane said...

The headphoned gas-passer bit reminded me of when my totally deaf brother once farted - very, VERY loudly - while the whole family was watching a movie. We all turned, shocked, and looked at him. His expression was as shocked as ours... "Could you hear that?!" he asked, incredulous. Why yes... yes, we could.

De Campo said...

One of my favorite past times is rocking out to the air bagpipes.

What? You don’t play Rock band; Scottish Idol?

Deborah said...

"No staring at your fellow passengers. If you can’t watch me out of the corner of your eye, try wearing mirrored sunglasses and then staring."

My daughter wears dark dark sunglasses. She calls them her "judging" sunnies. We all do it yes?

You make me miss riding the bus.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Wednesdays lack that "I am not what"?

Molly Potter said...

How LONG are you on the bus with the staring, seat hoggin, farting, air guitar playing unwilling to share their problems readily masses? Sounds great (British irony)

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

Girl, you got bus issues don't you? You need to write a whole series based on the trip that you take everyday. Are you a good artist? That strip could be golden.

Cloudia said...

You are evidently worth staring out! Glad I'm not the only one, LOL

Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

34milepizza said...

The Idiot King's are OBVIOUSLY a reference to the downstairs neighbors.

The mad woman behind the blog said...

I would add: No entry until the fly and the wasteband are in their proper locked positions.

Have a wonderful weekend and yes, I get the guac/margie message ALL the time, though mine usually tell me to take it outside. Might be a California thing.

mapstew said...

Now you make me want take the bus more!

A lovely weekend to you!


Mandy's Kidding said...

I was in a Thai restaurant full of STARERS!

What. The. Hell?

You almost expect it on a bus, but in a restaurant? Hmfh.

Secretia said...

I carry a candle with me and matches for unexpected poison fart gas. It says a million things when you light it!


Blissed-Out Grandma said...

You do have the best-ever observations on bus-riding. How about doing comparative research? You could tell us how the light-rail experience compares, or bus-riding in other cities, or.... or not!

Green-Eyed Momster said...

Happy weekend, Pearl!


Jayne Martin said...

Another charming, funny post... Someone should do a cartoon series on you. You have a great weekend, too. - Jayne

Debbie said...

as I live in a small town in which major transit means borrowing someone else's bike, I can only imagine all this! and it all seemed very , very funny! MIGHT just have to venture into a city and actually take a bus somewhere!!! :)

GregoryJ said...

Just an FYI, maybe a TMI.
In NYC, not where I live, but I'm near so I get stuck with hearing and reading all their news. It is against the law to take up more than one seat on a subway car, say, with a back pack or whatever. Even if the car is other wise empty!
This came to light when the city was on a income gathering push, fining everyone for everything. A young man got a ticket for having his knapsack on the seat beside him in an almost empty car.
Put that in your pipe and blow a bubble.
Love your blog, you are so funny and insightful.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Ha! "Guess What His Problem Is Day". What a great idea. I can see the advertising campaign splashed across the side of buses everywhere.


Have a great weekend.

Marla said...

One ticket, one seat .... Preach it sister!

Tempo said...

Oh Pearl, I'm thinkling you like the ceast-and-desist visits... anything to temper your boredom eh?!
If..IF..I'm ever forced to use the bus I've got your 'bus rules' printed and pinned to my front door. Just so I dont upset you. LOL

dave hambidge said...

You are too kind allowing 2 seat and bag episodes; run out of town after the first, IMHO.

(PS No idea how I arrived here, must have been flatulating on the bus and missed my stop!)

Laoch of Chicago said...

There is an inherent awfulness to riding the bus.

justsomethoughts... said...

1. great music
2. strenuous proponent of the one ticket one seat rule

pearl for transitmiester
or whateverthehell the position is called.