Tabatha Deans

Bringing Integrity to the Written Word

RIOT ON THE 16 BUS
Nothing good ever happens on the number 16 bus. It’s destination is a suburb of Denver that includes Walmart, lots of pawn shops and a judicial complex where convicts report to court, parole/probation officers, and take random urinalysis tests. The bus usually smells like urine and body odor, and the conversation always revolves around the latest tricks to pass a UA after having done drugs, or how unjust the justice system is in requiring parolees to pay for their own tests.
Today was no different as I was returning from my trip to Walmart to get my diabetic test strips, and I listened to the latest propaganda about a specific strain of marijuana that is not traceable in a UA. My fellow riders included an older black man with no teeth, several gangster-looking young people, and a young woman who looked to be about 22-years-old and a crackhead. Our bus driver was of middle-eastern descent, and welcomed me aboard in a cute broken-English accent.
We stopped on Colfax, at a bus stop that was under construction. A large woman pushing an overloaded cart, much like many homeless people push, began yelling at the bus driver when he informed her that she couldn’t board the bus right there because the construction and uneven ground prevented him from lowering the lift. He asked her to walk down a half block and he would gladly drop the ramp for her. She became angry and yelled at him to get off the bus and lift her heavy cart onto the bus.
“I will not lift, I will pick up at the next stop,” he told her.
She continued to yell at him, until the old man exited the bus and lifted her cart up the stairs. She followed him onto the bus and continued to yell at the driver, yelling racial slurs about his f*&^%&g people and how he should be a slave to her.
The collective crimes committed by the passengers apparently did not include racism or blatant disrespect, because the bus immediately broke out in shouts and jeers at the woman to “show some respect,” “why you gotta be like that?” or “that’s not cool man, have some manners.” The large woman turned and yelled at everyone on the bus, and for several minutes everyone argued. One man finally yelled that he “didn’t need this s*&t, he had a job interview to get to.” Everyone finally settled down and the angry woman took a seat in the handicapped section at the front of the bus.
There was silence for several stops, but when we got close to where the angry woman wanted to exit, she went to the front of the bus and got in the driver’s face.
“When we get there, you’re going to push that little lever and lower that f*&%*&g ramp so I can get off.”
The driver tried to politely explain that he would do that, but he couldn’t at the last stop because of the construction. She continued to berate him, and the bus erupted in shouts for her to sit down and leave him alone again. The angry lady wouldn’t let up, and before I knew it, the young crackhead stood up and approached her.
“Have some respect lady. He’s just doing his job.” Wow, I was a little impressed with the little crackhead. The angry lady yelled bad words at her, and told us all once again that “his kind” should all be dead. The crackhead moved closer, and the angry woman reached out and shoved her. Then all hell broke loose. The driver was trying to turn through an intersection, and the angry lady and the crackhead were engaged in a catfight right next to him. The old toothless man and one of the punks jumped in between the two women and pulled them apart, then half the bus called for the driver to kick the angry woman off immediately, the other half called for the driver to lock her in the bus and call the cops.
The driver maintained his composure and pulled into the next bus stop, and lowered the ramp for the angry woman to exit. She yelled all the way off the bus, and the crackhead yelled back. Someone called the police and the driver parked to await their arrival, while the angry lady and her cart got off and sat on the bench yelling back at the crackhead. As much as everyone on the bus wanted to see the cops come haul the woman away, collectively the riders decided that since most of them were on some kind of probation, in fact the crackhead was living in a halfway house, none of them wanted to be around when the cops showed up. They asked the driver to leave, which he did, and the rest of the ride home was spent listening to the collective talking re-living the altercation, and swearing that if they ever saw that psycho woman again they would “disrespect” her.
Excitement aside, it was kind of refreshing to watch the masses rally for a common cause of respect. Even if the masses were questionable…

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October 28, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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