Bus-Ride Affirmation, I

This morning I was late to the bus. I almost didn’t make it. I got to the bus stop as my bus pulled away and ran the last fifty feet in my walmart-brand skate shoes and tapped on the door. Thank god the bus driver let me on (they’re not really supposed to open the door when they’re not at marked bus-stops). I got on. I said “sorry,” I said “thank you.” The bus driver smiled. I put two dollars in the machine, and it spit out a fifty cent change card. The red light turned to green and I started back to an open seat.

I sat down, and at the next stop, the seat next to me was filled with a man with a notebook. I didn’t think much of it until I glanced over and saw what he was writing.

At first I though he was writing a song or a poem, it was a series of short lines down the left margin of the page. Then he halved the page vertically with a line, and wrote on top of the second column “cons,” that’s when I saw it for what it was.

A list of reasons, sorted into pros and cons, and upon closer examination (although not so close that I could be accused of being nosy) it regarded a relationship. On the pros side he had written “he makes me laugh,” “he pushes me to be a better person,” and “he’s neat,” on the cons side I could make out “he nags sometimes.” I was intrigued, prying into the private life of this man next to me by virtue of only furtive glances from the pages of my book.

I glanced again, I thought I read the words “sex,” “demanding,” and “share.” I read a few more pages in my book to bolster my alibi, and glanced once more “I love him.” And at that moment I was moved. Not to speak, as the small world, within this small time, of a bus ride would prohibit that, but I felt I knew something of him. I knew that reason, listed at the bottom of the pros side of his sheet of blue-lined paper would win out, and that all the other things he had written would mean nothing once he closed that notebook.

I love riding the bus, it never ceases to assure me of the humanness of humanity.

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~ by fayeelizibeth on 04.28.2010.

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