Thursday, September 13, 2007

Stigma can be a b*tch

This is a picture I took on the bus this morning. These, sitting by themselves without an owner in sight, are peach pits. They are saliva-soaked perishables left out in the open by an inconsiderate ASS. I could not believe my eyes so I took a picture and now I can't believe my camera.

Can I be honest? I love public transportation. I love the trolley that operates here in San Diego. Its air conditioning is cold, its punctuality is excellent and the ride to school is smooth. I also like the bus. Yes, I like the bus. I have air conditioning and satellite radio and a smooth ride in my car but I take the bus because I like it. Reading while driving is difficult and dangerous but reading on the bus is allowed. You don't get a lot of walking done when you drive but when you take the bus you're walking all the time. You are also forced to slow down, take it easy, let things happen. I'll be honest: these are all things I need to improve on.

The bus is also humbling. How do I know this? Because I shared a bus ride with two peach pits that some animal left on the bus for another person to pick up. I've shared the bus with newspapers left all over 5 seats for no reason. I shared a trolley ride with a man dressed in camouflage yelling about conspiracies at 7 am. I've sat next to people that smelled so atrocious that I would be surprised if the experience didn't contribute just slightly to the decline of my overall health.

There is a stigma attached to the bus for all these reasons but I just can't get enough. I don't like filling up my gas tank, I don't want to jockey for parking with college students and I drive like crap in the morning sometimes. Buses and trolleys and trains are running all the time, just waiting to pick someone up.

Try it out sometime; plan a route and take the bus. Look up the times online, grab your $2.25 and wait a few minutes. Think about the extra time it took you to get somewhere and wonder whether it was really lost time. Make this "lost time" count and see how you feel. Experience a little humanity from the front lines. Save the miles, save the gas, save the stress, ride a bus.

And thank the driver on your way out. The poor guy/gal has a heck of a job sometimes.

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