Adventures in Bus Riding



So far my travels via bus have been fine.  Yes, public transport does lend to some interesting people watching, but so far so good.  Yesterday, was my first true glimpse of the colorful cast of characters that ride the CAPmetro.  While waiting at the bus stop, a young guy in his early to mid 20’s walks up with his bike.  Following him was an older fellow in his mid 60’s.  This old man “screamed” crazy-homeless with his muttering, ranting, slurred speech and his disheveled appearance.  He then became agitated and began shouting at the kid for leaning his bike against the fire hydrant.  At first, I thought there was going to be a confrontation, but then the two sat next to each other and started chatting… this pair seemed to know each other.  The younger one asked if I knew what time the #7 was to arrive.  I looked up the bus schedule on my phone, and after telling him that they had another 15 minutes or so, the older dude left for the convenient store.  That’s when the kid started talking to me.  He told me not to mind the old guy for he was “a 65 year old Hawaiian”.  So being a Hawaiian is what’s causing this old, crazy dude’s demeanor?  Very strange logic.  Then it was revealed the source of this awesome deductive reasoning…  the guy informed me that his Power Aide bottle was really filled with wine (white zinfandel from it’s pink appearance) and that he hopes his friend picks up a box o’ wine while at the store.  The old guy soon returned empty handed and the 101 had arrived.  “Rock on with that dude”, is what I thought as I boarded my bus and left the drunken duo to their day.

Later on I had another bus stop chat with a slightly hyper gentleman who was new to the area, was going to walk to the library, is there a library on Guadalupe?, and he was going to fix business signs for money, he needs to find the Groovy Lube, he talked with the dude earlier and may be able to clean the sign.  All of his information ran together into some sort of large sentence snake of doom.  In the same breath, just about the tail of the snake, he asked me what the Groovy Lube sign looked like.  So again I looked up shit on my fancy ass phone.  Then he went on about how their color scheme wasn’t “hippie” enough and other crap I started to tune out.  Perhaps I should stop engaging in conversations with people at the bus stop.  A the dude’s bus arrived to which he informed me that his bus would also get me to downtown.  This was true; there were a few buses that ran to my next transfer, including the one the man boarded.  I thanked him, but opted for the later one.

On the last part of my journey home, a kid in his late teens/early 20’s wearing headphones boarded.  He was listening to rap.  How did I know this?  Because he was singing/wording alone to his music audibly.  Not sure if you’ve been around someone who has done this… we outside people do not know what melodies are being played, just the awkward phrase or vocalization from a clueless headphones guy.   At first, he just muttered the lines of his mystery lyrics.  If you didn’t see the headphones, you might assume he was a bit mental and talking to the voices.  Then his rapping got louder.  Then he whipped out his drumsticks… YES, this dude had drumsticks!  And he was kind of chair dancing/ rocking back and forth (again, if you didn’t notice his head phones, this could have been another symptom of crazy).  So the only thing all of us passengers heard was:  ‘words, words, *CLICK*, words, *CLICK*’ as the kid was banging his sticks together and singing along in his own little world; a little world that was invading the personal space of the lady sitting right next to him.  Wow, did she have the patience of a saint to deal with this… not sure if I could.  Finally, the kid exited the bus, to which the lady chuckled and sighed at the ridiculousness of it all.

So what did I learn from this?

1- Perhaps I shouldn’t talk to every person who rides the bus.  Not that I haven’t had sane, pleasant people chat me up in transit, but yeah, being more discerning would help.

2- I may get a shit ton of blogging material while using public transportation, and this is not necessarily a bad thing.