The Red Box
The bus pulled up and we instinctively formed a single-file line, shuffling to the door.
It looked like I was going to get a seat. Yeah, I sit for pretty much eight hours straight at work, so standing for the fifteen-minute ride downtown isn’t what you’d call a hardship. But still: Life’s little victories and all that.
I flashed my pass to the driver and took a seat close to the front between two fellow riders who were nice enough to leave a space open between them. Probably because they wanted their personal space. I smiled at them both politely, as if to say, “Sorry, you guys.”
Then I heard him.
“Hey yo, wait! Ho, hey, hey! Hold it up, there, hey!” The bus wasn’t going anywhere yet, but whoever was attached to this voice felt the need to yell in its general direction anyway. Because, you know, the world revolves around him, so if he’s not ready for the bus, THE BUS STAYS.
A large, sweaty, disheveled—well, there’s really no better term for him, so I’ll just use it—butt-wipe ambled aboard, paid with cash, mostly coins (strike two—strike one was making the bus wait in the first place), blurted out, “Hey, move it on over—hey, thanks,” while practically sitting on the lap of the old lady next to him (strike three—if it’s a choice between standing or manhandling an old lady, YOU STAND), and finally, lowered his voice about an octave to say, “Hey, how’s it goin’?” to the breasts of the girl sitting across the aisle from him (strike four—a bonus strike; he’d earned it).
As the bus lurched towards downtown, I noticed the red box B-Wipe was holding, and it all made sense: He was TOTALLY the kind of person who would eat microwave pancakes.