Friday, February 27, 2009

transit tales


Video is of a crazy lady on a BART train.

Late one night, a friend was driving a bus. His only passenger was a crazy lady. The crazy lady was cursing and ranting to no one. Suddenly she stood up and walked to the front of the bus.

"Driver," she said, "There's a woman in the back of the bus who is being quite abusive. I can't stand having her talk to me that way."

My friend thought that one over for a minute and said, "Ma'am, what I need you to do is go back there and tell her that I will not tolerate that sort of behavior. Tell her that if she can't behave herself I'll have to ask her to leave the bus."

She walked back to her seat and delivered a stern lecture to her reflection in the window. After that, everything was quiet.

When I saw the picture below I had to ask, "Who is that fat old motherfucker? He looks overfed and underworked and just too goddam cheerful to be me." Then I remembered that, when I was overworked and hungry my great dream was to survive long enough to find an easy job and a soft situation. It took time

This is me, parking buses in the rain.

Photo taken by my brother bus parker, Chris.

7 comments:

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

A face like that could sell one Hell of a lot of Busdriver Beeefcake calendars.

Jon said...

Yeah, that crazy lady is a real looker. I'm sure bus drivers would buy a calendar just to look at her.

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

I like the way us old punk rock folk blend into today's Obama World.

I'm hoping you get out to this year's Santa Rosa thoroughbred meeting to get a few shots.

Jon said...

Seriously, I'm surprised and grateful that the world made room for us. Way back, that was almost the whole point. I thought I'd been born into a world that didn't have any use for the likes of me. I know plenty of people who died fighting for a little room.

Speaking of fighting and dying, I avoid, among other things, motorcycles and the horses. Long, long ago, I had a friend who was really good at picking horses. He encouraged me to come to the track, set a limit on what I would bet, and let him pick a few horses for me.

I didn't have much money, and I dealt strictly in cash. I had the rent and grocery money in one pocket and twenty dollars for the horses in the other.

My friend was frustrated with himself, but I could see he knew what he was doing. He kept picking horses to win and they would show. Or he would bet the trifecta and get the right horses, but in the wrong order.

One minute I was down eighteen dollars and the next minute the fever hit me. The last two races were going to make me rich. I got my friend's picks and bet the rent and grocery money. My friend didn't even bet. He was pulling on my sleeve going, "Jon, don't be an asshole."

A few minutes later, I was broke, for the rest of the month. We took a taxi to the track, but we rode home on a crowded bus.

I like to think that I have matured and I am less likely to jump out of a window on the outside chance that I will land in a featherbed with a beautiful babe. However, I have heard that voice that says, "Forget about the danger. Think of the fun." I don't like to give it a chance to speak. I never bet more than a dollar at a time and I don't ride motorcycles.

I don't worry about the horses, but I used to like motorcycles. Maybe I'll get one for my sixtieth birthday.

sfmike said...

Don't get a motorcycle. I know too many people missing too many limbs who had an inordinate love of motorcycles.

That's a great crazy lady story, by the way, and I'm so glad you got a camera. Your world is coming into focus (for those on the outside).

Frankiecon said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jon said...

Frank, I got your comment. The number didn't make sense. I'll try and figure it out. I emailed you at your gmail and yahoo addresses.

Unfortunately, I've been working. My easy and fun bus parking gig has ended and my new schedule has me going out to Mill Valley and doing a second trip through the financial district. Still free after 9:30 AM though. I'll try and call this weekend.

Glad you've found a meeting you like.

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