It stopped after several minutes, also for no apparent reason. That is to say, no one came out to tend to it, at least no one that I could see.
This "house ad" was on this morning's bus:
Although I couldn't read it, I got the gist of it.
I had a short morning meeting to discuss the building of a project website with two Daniels, one who goes by Danny and the other who goes by Dan.
I staffed the New Student Orientation Info Fair Office of Information Technology table with my colleague Jason Austin, who wasn't really into it when we started, but came around in the end. The first 45 minutes the new students came through and the second 45 minutes the parents (or guardians) of the new students came through. As this gig did last year, it brought out the swine in us that is at the base of all men—straight or gay.
We had our weekly working staff meeting from 2:45 - 3:30, where we talked about how the discussion proceeded in the manager's meeting about my boss's imminent retirement (September 1st) and how things might possibly shape up in terms of a reorganization.
Today, it was pointed out to me that a task I thought I had until next Wednesday to do, was actually due yesterday. I stayed at work until 12:45 in the morning to finish it. However in order to do that, I needed my car in order to be able to get home at that hour, so I caught the 8:15 bus home to get it from the Brooks Avenue stop in front of the Credit Union—the "scene of the (now infamous) argument" of a week ago.
In somewhat of a déjà vu moment, the bus passed by me again at the stop. Of course I'd made sure it was the #12 Method bus, so I walked up to the intersection where tonight this driver actually stopped and open the door to let me board.
"They stress at every one of our drivers' meetings that we're not supposed to stop between stops," he said as I swiped my fare card.
I did everything I could to remain calm, and said, "But this is a stop. It's been a stop ever since the detour of this route for the Hillsborough Street construction, but they've never put up a sign."
"Well, they need to put up a sign," he said to me as if it were my responsibility to see that they did. We didn't argue any further, and I calmly took a seat making a mental note to call CAT on Tuesday.
I didn't think it was possible, but there was a lady on this bus to rival Logorrhea. I took a seat across from her, both of us in the front, in center-facing seats. She held a cane in front of her across her legs and to the floor, and she had little-to-no teeth, or so it seemed. The two qualities she most shared with Logorrhea was that she talked loudly and she talked a lot.
As we approached the stop in front of the Circle K convenience store at the corners of Method and Western Boulevard, a guy started to walk toward the front to get off there, and the driver said, "Don't walk up here while I'm driving. Have a seat, sir. Wait until I'm stopped." Another rulesy kind of driver, I thought.
Once he came to a complete stop, he said, "5 minutes, folks!" as this is a sync stop, where—as I've explained before—if the driver arrives before the scheduled time for the stop, s/he is supposed to wait until that time before proceeding to get the bus back on schedule. That way it won't arrive too early at subsequent stops causing people to miss their bus.
The lady with the cane started to push herself up and said, "I'm gone run in."
To which the driver replied, "You aren't going to be able to get in there and back in five minutes. If you're not back when the five minutes are up, I'm leaving."
She turned to the bus at large and said, "Will someone run in there for me? I can't run." Crickets. Heads turned. Eyes averted.
"Nobody? Won't nobody run in there for me? I just want someone to run in there and get me a beer." Crickets.
Getting a little defensive, "I got the money! I just can't get in there and back fast enough." Crickets.
At that point, a guy a couple of seats behind me reached over to her and handed her a shiny, 24-ounce can of Miller Lite.
"That'll do," she said. "Yessah, that's what I'm talkin' about," she said as she put it in her purse.
The driver, watching this transaction go down in his rear view mirror said, "Don't open that in here."
She yelled back at him, "I ain't gonna open that in here! You think I'm stupid?"
"I'm just saying, don't open it in here," he replied watching her in his mirror.
She yelled again, "I ain't gonna open it! You think I want to go back to jail? I was just in there over last weekend. You think I want to go back in there?" And then she added laughing, "Beside if I did open it, I'd camouflage it."
Mr. Rulesy did not find this amusing, and he answered, "Don't think I can't smell it. All y'all open stuff back there, I don't care what it is, I can smell it. The smell from all that stuff comes up here to the driver first."
Once again, she yelled, "I said I ain't gone do it. Why would I do it?"
It was mercifully quiet for a minute as the five-minute stop ended, and the bus driver started to pull away.
Obviously not yet done, the lady said, again to the bus at large, "Anyone know where the AA meeting is around here? They supposed to be one right near here. I goes to AA every now and then." Crickets.
At home, I quickly microwaved two hot dogs, each of which I cut in half and then awkwardly tried to eat on a half of a thin bagel. They kept shooting out of the bread and I got ketchup all over my fingers.
I returned to work, where as I mentioned earlier, I worked until 12:45, getting home at 1:00.