Tabatha Deans

Bringing Integrity to the Written Word

Haunted by the young

I made the tragic mistake of boarding the 65 bus in the early afternoon, just as the junior high and high schools were letting out. The bus filled up with young hooligans quickly, and I scrunched deeper into the corner back seat. I had deliberately chosen that seat to be isolated and enjoy the scenic ride along Monaco, with only my thoughts go keep me company. It was snowing heavily and I was slowly working my way to Robert’s house. I had spent the morning writing mindless online posts, and intended to enjoy the ride. I looked forward to the two mile walk from the bus stop to his house in the fresh air and snow.

The children were cramping my space,as three of them took seats near me and began their senseless teenage chatter. They appeared to be about 13 or 14, two boys and one girl. They looked a bit nerdy by teenage standards, the boys’ feet looking too big for their skinny ankles, which peeked out from beneath pants that in my teenage years we would have called floods. Their pants were baggy, not in a gangster kind of way, but more like they had gone through a growth spurt since the beginning of the year, losing their baby fat and thinning out, as they simultaneously grew taller.

Their cheeks were red and blotchy, not from the cold so much as that constant state of insecurity and embarrassment indicative of young males. One boy and the girl were teasing the other boy, apparently he was moving, and this was his last day at school. They were well spoken, teasing him about needing therapy without his calming presence, dramatically declaring their love for him, how could they live without him. The words were said in jest, and the young man took the good natured ribbing quietly, only the deepening red spots on his cheeks indicated he heard their words.

I listened to this banter for several miles, before the young man pulled the cord signaling his stop. They gave him a final farewell jab of love, and he silently got off the bus. He turned to wave good bye, and I could see the forbidden tears of sorrow begin to fall down his face.

April 22, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where have the manners gone?

I recently learned an important tip in life–”If you meet three A-holes before noon, it’s not them.”
Well, although I did have one of those days, and admittedly I was a bit cranky and perhaps a bit hyper-sensitive/critical of others, that had no bearing on the fact that my commute home was plagued with ill-mannered people.
First of all, there’s the unorganized battle for boarding the bus/train. Now the regular morning commuter crowd, which includes the Ice King, have a very set routine and order of boarding. They are a delight. And don’t get me wrong, if the train isn’t crowded I see no need to share my seat, but during peak hours its just rude not to share. But I found the commuters at the Southmoor station to be just terrible.
The train was mostly full of commuters going home, so when I boarded I was forced to look for an empty seat. I found one facing a young woman who was plugged into her phone, stretched out across her seat,with her feet stretched out and resting on the empty seat opposite her. I smiled and motioned I wanted to sit there, and she rewarded me with a nasty look as she moved her feet over a few inches. I took my seat and muscled my bags into the small space between us, maybe deliberately accidentally bumping her offending legs with my bags. She still didn’t move her feet, and as the train filled up, I scooted over against her feet to make room for others to sit down. She continued to give me the evil eye, and I continued to push against her feet.
I finally got off the train and arrived first at the bench to wait for the 65 bus, deciding to take the scenic route home. The sun was shining and I set my bags on the grass, then stretched out next to them to soak up the warmth. I enjoyed the solitude for about five minutes, before a middle-aged business man approached. He stood, blocking my sunlight and casting a shadow over me, but I didn’t hold that against him. He continued to read his book as he stood there, ignoring other commuters as they gathered around to wait for the bus. A younger man dressed in business attire came to stand behind him, and as the bus pulled into the station I gathered my bags and stood to board the bus.
The jerk reading the book acknowledged me with only a glance as he pushed past me to board the bus first. Bad form. The second man moved to get on the bus, but at the last minute recognized the bad behavior of the man in front of him, and paused to let me board first. I rewarded him with a Thank you and took my seat on the crowded bus. An older gentleman with gray hair got on at the next stop, and I looked around to see if there was any other seat available to him, or if I should stand and offer him mine. There were two empty seats—one directly behind me with a middle-aged woman sitting against the window, and her jacket laying on the seat next to her. The other was next to a large man who spilled over into the seat next to him. The woman didn’t bother to move her jacket, and as the bus started moving I realized the old man was standing behind her holding onto the railing. I stood to offer him my seat, and the woman let out an exaggerated sigh as she finally moved her jacket and he took a seat.
The rest of the commute was relatively uneventful, with experience riders boarding the bus and demanding others make room for them. We were entertained by a screaming mother on her cell phone, scolding her son for hitting his brother, and apparently breaking her arm.
“Bleep, bleep, bleep, I’ve spent all day at work and now I have to spend all night in the ER with you! What have I told you about hitting your brother? Is it broken? Is he crying? I told you not to hit your brother! Get on the bus and meet me on Broadway!”
Ahhhh, the relaxing commute of the 65 bus…

October 9, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment