There are two types of people who ride the bus: People who need to and people who want to need to.
They act very differently on the bus. People who don’t have the means to transport themselves in other ways besides the bus have other friends on the bus. People who could beg mommy and daddy to buy them a used Honda Civic look lonely. The former group is comfortable talking loudly and about personal issues while riding the bus because they are with their fellow community members. The latter group brings a book and stares into its pages as if looking away will cause their parent’s death the second they get on the bus. The poor group always knows how much the bus is and always has exact change. The wanna be poor group either has a bus card subsidized by their college or can never figure out how much money the bus costs and awkwardly holds up the line while they confusedly ask the bus driver why they can’t get change for the five that they just inserted into the money slot. Poor people know how to shave. Non-poor people who ride the bus have 7 o’clock shadow that looks like it has been enhanced with gravel.
I’m, depressingly, part of this second group. I hate myself. I making an addendum to my previous blog post and putting myself at the top of the list of people I have prejudices against. I always bring a book. I don’t have a backpack like my fellow poor-posers but I usually carry folders containing important business documents. I wear a sports jacket and have half a beard scruffily attached to my cheek. I’m a douchenugget.
So I try to align myself as much as possible with the other group – the one I respect more. I wear a hoodie instead of a knit hat. I don’t say thank you to the bus driver. I’ll sit too close to someone instead of standing. I’m not afraid to fall asleep on the bus. When I have phone conversations on the bus, I have them at normal speaking volume. If I had kids, I’d bring them on the bus and tell them to sit four to a seat.
It doesn’t work. I’ve got to much privilege running through my veins. You can’t blend with the lower class while you’re reading The Amazing Adventures of Kavelier and Clay. If the conversations you have at normal speaking volume are about ranking SNLs newest crop of performers, you blow your cover. But I still refuse to belong to the backpack toting confused, lonely, and sad looking Macalester students who accidentally sit in the handicapped section and then awkwardly realize a little too late because they’re entrenched in The People’s History of the United States that they’re supposed to move when an old man in an electric wheelchair nudges them to get out of the way. So I just stay in the limbo area of self-identity.
I’ve always been good at limbo. I am skinny and have amazing balance, so bending over backwards has never been that hard. But I also hate limbo. There’s either too intense of a competition going on, or too little of one. Usually there’s a little of both. I don’t like any game where people get eliminated because then the people who lose really lose out on the fun of playing, but then I get annoyed when some people don’t take those rules seriously, or don’t understand the rules and just go back in for another round when they feel like they might be able to get below a pole that is lower than the pole they couldn’t get lower than. I lost this metaphor.
People who need to ride the bus, don’t constantly try to create meaningful metaphors. DAMNIT!