All posts tagged bus

This is the last time I offer to help an old bitch down the steps!

Published June 17, 2012 by Sandee

She was hunched over, frail and carried a cane.  At the edge of the steps about to walk down she looked so teeny, susceptible to an unhealthy tumble.  “Sure you don’t want to take the elevator, Methuselah?”  I said.  “No, no, I’ll be fine,” she warbled.   That lying wrinkly twat!  I’d seen her before.  We’d had the loveliest of chats — she’s 200 years old, she is, and had some stories to tell from the days of yore, as you might imagine.  But the last time I recall she had taken the elevator, as I had suggested.

Well, I just couldn’t see it, her getting down those stairs in one piece.  I ran to aid her.  “I’ll help you — here,” I said offering my arm.  “Well, I could just hold the banister,” she said.  But it was two miles away from where we stood in the center of the steps.  “Here, let me,” I said again.  “Oh, o-okay,” she warbled taking my arm, and blibbity, bop, clop, cloppity, clack, crack – we both fell!  “Oh, oh, I told you I wanted to hold the banister,” she bleated – “You meant well, but you don’t know how to hold a person,” she scolded.  What the — why, I orta!  We finally got her old ass up off the steps, she went to her car and drove away.

From here on end, any half-dead, dried up raisins I see who need help crossing the street, or stepping off the bus can kiss my ass!  And I’ll be good goddamed if you get my seat on the bus – no, no, I’ll continue to do this – so people can see how magnanimous I am.  But other than that I mean well, but I just don’t know how to hold a person — so fuck off and die!

“Compassion for another is becoming part of her functioning life system.”

Published June 12, 2012 by Sandee

I was on the bus.  An acquaintance boarded.  “How’re you doing?”  I said.  She had the darkest aura, the saddest expression on her face.  She shrugged with a wry smile, stuck her hand out and shook it to indicate the ‘so, so’ gesture.  It looked like she wanted to smile, but couldn’t.   “Oh no,” I said.  I let her be then.  I didn’t run to sit next to her in the two-seater to chat it up.

Later she stood in front of my seat preparing to get off of the bus.  She slumped over the partition in front of the exit door in the back.  I looked at her dejected posture and said, “I hope things get better.”  “Well…  I don’t know…  it’s not good,” she said.  She continued sadly, “By the way I read your book.  It scared me a little but I liked it.”   I thanked her for reading my book and said, “I’ll be putting the good vibes out in your direction.”  I touched her hands.  I wished that I could make whatever was wrong with her go away.  For the rest of the ride I imagined what might be wrong.  It made me sad and my eyes watered.

Earlier I had seen another acquaintance with a sad aura.  A very young woman.  She was wispy and fragile.  A beautiful girl.  I know that she had experienced trials in the past and I remembered that because of the energy that I received from her at that moment.  I asked how she was doing and noticed her eyes.  There was something in there that made me sad.  Again I wanted to cry.

I thought about the empathic creature in this old Star Trek episode.  She puts her hands on a person to feel their pain.  This is what I felt like yesterday:

Okay, Bye Bye Now Gus!

Published May 15, 2012 by Sandee

Ahahahahaaa!   Why?  Why!?  Without fail, when I take the bus to see my sister and I’m one of three black folks on it —  and of course, I want not to be sitting next to anyone — one of the only three black people chooses to sit next to me!

You see I used to be ‘mature,’ magnanimous, civic minded.  I used to say, ‘Why, I won’t rest my bag in this seat next to mine like those other meany selfish selfies.  If someone wants to sit next to me they’re more than welcome.  By golly, they’ve paid their fare just as I, and they deserve to feel welcome here.’

That was before a big ‘ol fat black lady sat next to me three years ago.  After four hours with my bus buddy, I had no circulation in my right arm, leg and ass cheek.  Fuck that shit no more!  Thenceforth, I act like one of the meany selfish selfies.  But do you think this old black guy on my bus to MA this time gave a flying fuck?  No.  “Can I sit here next to you?”  He says.  So I rolled my eyes and lifted my passenger repelling baggage and let the old buzzard sit.  Do you know what he said to me?  First of all one of my rules is never to talk to plane, bus, train, or boat mates as the energy is uselessly spent unless they’re offering me a job making lots and lots of money.  He says to me, “Hi, how are you?”  Motherfuck!   Of course my answer was, “Arrrhggghh.”  He was a nightmare, twitching and rubbing up against my arm and such.  At some point he starts humming “Somewhere Over the Rainbow!”

The bus made a stop for us to get food.  I got me some, he got him some then we come back to our seats.  I finished eating and he looks at me and says, “It’s good after eating, you seem more awake now.”  “Yeah,” I said frowning.  He leans forward and peers over the seat in front of his and giggles then.   He had an African accent (I’m sorry but I can’t distinguish region — he sounded like my brother-in-law who’s from Uganda — sue me!)  “She’s so small.”  I’m thinking, that’s funny, his saying that about a fellow passenger — I was beginning to like him.  “Who?”  I ask.  “The bus, it starts to move but I don’t see anyone driving.”  “Ohhhhh, the bus driver is small, you mean?”   “Mmm hmm,” he said nodding.   Now this got me laughing, hard.  We became bus buddies — yay!

He told me he was from Sierra Leone, he was 63, married with two children and that he lived in Worcester.  I found out also that he would be taking the Metro Boston Rail after getting off of the bus.  “Me too — what do you know,” I said.  Needless to say after saying bye bye now nice talking to you Gus, I ditched the shit out of him — he was old and had fifty million bags — not hard to do.  I’d done enough to talk as much as I did on the bus with him — riding the train with him into Worcester would’ve been pushing it!

The reality of me and a wild, imperfect, confounding life

Published May 6, 2012 by Sandee

There’s a woman I see on the bus when I come home from work.  She smiles constantly – a subtle, creepy smile — even when she’s sitting alone.  I heard her say something bitter with that smile on her face.  “What’s wrong with people?  Why don’t people move to the back of the bus when it’s crowded?  That’s what you’re supposed to do!”  She waved her hand indignantly, before smiling again with a slightly glazed look in her eyes.  “I knew it!”  I said to myself.  The smile was an affectation.  I thought, maybe it covers up negative feelings that she can’t face; maybe her parents told her that she should never show anger — to always be nice.  Perhaps they told her that she had to smile otherwise people wouldn’t like her.

It turned out that this woman and I knew the same person, a nice Jamaican woman whom I met on the bus.  I approached the bus stop one day and the smiley-creepy-lady and nice Jamaican woman were there.  The Jamaican woman introduced us.  “Hi,” I said, planning never to say hi to her again.  I’ve seen her quite a few times since.  I look away or turn my head in the other direction when I’m sitting on the bus and she walks by.  I fantasize that she thinks I hate her, that she thinks I’m a snob, that she thinks I think something’s wrong with her, that she thinks I think I’m better than her.  I fantasize that she’s desperate for people to like her.  Ha ha ha – what fun for me!  She’s someone I have an aversion to.  I don’t like her.  She sits very straight, and wears plain clothes, drab colors – with that smile the whole time.

Too bad for this lady because I read in a zen book once that when we get mischievous thoughts, we shouldn’t freak out and try to suppress them (These were not the exact words.).  The book said that we should accept the thoughts, to let them come in then let them go out, because it’s who we are and we can’t escape it.  We have that side to us no matter how hard we try to cover up the stench.  The writer said also – I’m paraphrasing – that sometimes it’s healthy to act out a little mischief.  I suppose as long as it’s not evil.  I’m not going to look at the book to make sure that I’ve paraphrased correctly, because I really like the definition I just quoted.  What if I’m not remembering it correctly?  I don’t want my belief of what the reading was about to be shattered – so there.

This smiling woman was forcing a countenance which made me uneasy.  I think that this is the same as me listening to music generally thought of as uplifting merely because it is a common belief that it would lift a person’s mood.  Perhaps I would listen to a song like the one below, which is really really good by the way – Mahavishnu rocks!  But believing that I should force myself to be ‘lifted’ from a mood by listening to a type of music that is commonly thought of as uplifting is supporting a false idea.  The song below has the mantra, ‘Let me fulfill thy will. Oh lord supreme, supreme.  Let me fulfill thy will.”  It’s a kickass song and I’m not dissing it – I’m just using it as a palatable example because I think inserting an actual Jesus Lordy Lordy gospel song would be too extreme and distracting from my point.  I could easily listen to this song with these lyrics and imagine that I’m merging with the idea, “Oh lord supreme, supreme,” and that I should release myself unto this vibration for an all around harmonious rest of the day.  But I would listen to a nice song like this and feel murderous, absolute angst, fear and self-loathing after going to work and confronting a reality that only required me to take a really deep look at myself in order to iron things out, instead of trying to escape my mood with some superficial means, or forced method.


Really what I might feel inside is this:


I listen to this and feel invigorated, relieved of the feelings that the mood of the song mirrors.  I’m in touch with the reality of the anger and pain that I’m feeling.  I’m not smothering it.  I’m not going to church on Sunday and on the way home in the car suffering bouts of road rage, or gossiping or judging people on what I believe to be inappropriate based on what “God” told me.  I’m looking at me, the reality of me and a wild, imperfect, confounding life .

Don’t get involved in other people’s fights on the bus

Published April 27, 2012 by Sandee

An old man got on the bus demanding that a woman in front, in the old people seats give up her kid’s seat for him.  “Can I have that seat?”  He said, pointing to her kid.  The bus was a can of Granadaisa Sardines.  It was hot and I stood in back of the bus, sweating like a bitch on fire.  People were still getting on the bus, squeezing past other passengers and their baggage.  People were twisting around to see what was going on.  From the back I could hear the man because he was yelling.  The woman yelled back, “No!”  “What?!”  The old man said.  “I said no!”  She said back.  He yelled even louder, “I want that seat!”

The woman wouldn’t budge, so a nice lady, who also had no business sitting in the old people seats, gave him hers.  He sat down and screamed to the nice woman who had given him her seat, “I’m sorry.  I just had to sit down.  She should have given me her seat.  I’m sorry.”  He said to the mean woman with the brat then, “You’ll get old and I hope they don’t give you a seat!”

I hate when people who have no business sitting in those seats refuse to get up when old people get on.  Jesus!  It’s printed right on the seats to please let old and handicapped people sit there.  People don’t go to charm school anymore.  They don’t have manners.

An acquaintance of mine was on the bus.  I frowned at him and pointed to the commotion. “That man’s right, those people have no business sitting there.  He’s right!  I hate that!  I hate that!”  I said.  I wagged my finger and shook my head.  I was sweaty and probably looked like a maniac.  My acquaintance’s face was red.  He seemed overwhelmed with the commotion, with the crowded bus, with the heat, with me wagging my finger at him and sweating.  I even riled myself up so much that I got an acid reflux attack.  This was fucked up because I wanted to be on time – I hate being late for work.   The only remedy for the excruciating acid reflux pain was for me to get off the bus a mile and a half before my stop to buy a bottle of water to stop the pain.  So that’s what I did.

The lesson:  I was dumb to get upset over a stranger’s conflict.  I was already imbalanced as this was supposed to be my day off, I was running late, I was uncomfortable and hot, and as usual, had slept very little.  This incident was an easy target for displaced frustration.  God forbid I should have been sitting in the front where I could have caused more of a ruckus being an instigator!

So in the sunlight of the spirit I forgive the stupid bitch who was a peasant raised by wolves.  The poor thing just didn’t know any better.  What does a wolf know?  I should accept people’s shortcomings like the bible says — judge not lest ye be judged – something like this.  She probably didn’t go to charm school.  I didn’t either, but I didn’t have to.  I read “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” which has stuff about manners and what not in there.

Talking, the Plague of Society

Published April 18, 2012 by Sandee


Psycho Killer, by David Byrne: 

You start a conversation you can’t even finish.

You’re talking a lot, but you’re not saying anything.

When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed.

Say something once, why say it again?


This is one of my favorite songs.  I sing it with a facial tick to portray a person fed up with mindless communication.  I especially love when people ask you a question then answer it themselves.  I wish we would learn to be quiet around each other.  The longer I hear people talk the more I can pick out meaninglessness.  At that point I can translate their subtext, which is the same for everyone who runs off at the mouth, including me.  I think we’re really saying that we’re lonely and that we want people to know that we exist.  We want people to like us.

We don’t have confidence in our ability to simply take positive actions to secure bonds with people, so we run off at the mouth instead.  Why are we afraid of quiet?  Why can’t we just experience time together?  I like when you can nod, sigh, moan, smile, and raise your brow at a person, and they get it.  My grandma and I do that sometimes when we go to the café at the Hebrew Home for the Aged at Riverdale.  We stare out of the window at the palisades and Hudson River, drink coffee and eat David’s white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.  It’s very cool, and we don’t exhaust ourselves with all of that running off at the mouth.  More importantly, we don’t run the risk of choking to death from talking with our mouths full.

I get irritated when a stranger says God bless you after I sneeze on the bus or train.  It’s just another one of those mindless things that we say.  It has nothing to do with being good to your fellow human being, not really.  And worst of all it means that I have to say thank you, and sometimes I don’t feel like opening my mouth, especially since I don’t get enough sleep as it is.  Most of the time I’m too tired to even talk to myself – some folks don’t realize how much energy talking takes.  When a stranger says God bless you, sometimes I just nod and groan unintelligibly — Scooby Doo speak.  I respond, “ran ru,” but really, I don’t open my mouth or move my lips.  It’s stressful when a stranger says God bless you.  I’m nervous about having a succession of sneezes as they might be a person who says God bless you after each sneeze, so I hold my face tight around my nose to prevent sneezing again.  I think you could have a heart attack doing that.  

Are you really asking God to bless me or is this just a cheap way for you to feel like a mensch?  A cheap display of humanitarianism.  Blech!  Maybe the next time some stranger says God bless you to me I should say:  ‘Thank you ever so much for asking God to bless me especially during this time in my life where I am plagued by a myriad of mental, spiritual, and physical problems.  There are microscopic pill bugs crawling on me and telephone calls that I get from Uranus, yet it seems that no one wants to help.  The worst of it is that I’m being followed by people trying to brand me with a barcode.  Maybe I should just have a glass of Tang and relax on the fire escape.  Maybe I’m just stressed out.  It’s so nice to meet you.  What’s your name?  Mine’s Sandee, or Sword-chinned bitch, as my friends call me — sometimes I am called Sandor.  I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you asking God to bless me.  May I have your phone number so that I can talk to someone kind, while I’m at the looney bin?”  The next time someone sneezes, I’ll bet that person thinks twice about saying ‘God bless you’, about saying something to a stranger without thinking about exactly what they’re saying. 

But to be fair, it takes time to cultivate this ability to be silent around people.  It’s a skill where you use body language and good vibes to communicate.  You have to appreciate stillness.  Telepathy – I’ve had it with a couple of ex boyfriends and it’s very economical.  When you don’t talk as much you have more energy for you-know-what.   Maybe in the society of the future we can do this, like in that underground society in the movie “Beneath the Planet of the Apes.”