Sunday, January 22, 2006

Bus Musings

Every few months I get a bug in me that says I have to save money for future expenses. And I decide, OK, from next month, I am going to use the bus to get to work and give up driving my car downtown. And then I take the bus for one day as a trial, and dutifully give up this insane idea for another few months.

My family needed the car today, so I had the opportunity to take the bus to run some errands. It was a simple A to B and back again. I forgot it was Sunday, and I live in Scarborough.

You see, on the weekends, the TTC single day pass is extended for families. For the price of one day pass, a whole family can travel. And in multicultural Scarborough, the two adults and four children rule is tested to the limit. Here are a few random and racist(!) musings on my TTC travels:

  1. Why do some young men, particularly black, and Bengali FOBs who think they are black, sit with their legs spread as apart as possible? I would like to know what brand of jeans you wear - the pants are already way down and now you are stretching them to the limit - and they are holding, just!
  2. Just because you are a woman with 3 kids does not mean you can sit in the disabled/senior section and pretend the rules don't apply. If a senior gets on the bus, you get up!
  3. I have heard the term somewhere before - so I cannot take credit for this - SUV strollers. Good grief, when I was a young kid (I sound like my dad now) strollers were thin little things you put the baby in and push. Now it appears these strollers can beat a Walmart shopping cart in size. It takes two people to hoist it on the bus and you can forget about the parents moving to the back. Get on the bus to avoid a traffic jam - and there's one in the bus aisle.
  4. And I will have to run into an auntie whose name I will never recall. One saw me today at the bus stop, chatted to me for 10 minutes until her bus came, and all the time I was like, wtf was her name again? I know I saw her somewhere. This is one good point towards Asian politeness, you can say auntie instead of Mrs ----- and just smile and nod.
  5. TTC buses seem to have strange shock stabilization systems. Someone (usually an older Chinese gent) will decide he has a perfect sense of balance, and stand reading his paper, disregarding the handrails. And then the bus takes a turn, and the gent goes flying. Sow-lee!
  6. Some desi girls with matching clothes get on the bus. Now I think this is one department guys are completely different. When I meet up with my guy friends for a night of pool or movies, we don't ask each other what are you wearing. Some girls, on the other hand, always seem to coordinate their outfits. And then they give the guys on the bus, especially the ones with bandannas, a once-over. Alright, there's nothing wrong with girls ogling guys (gender equality and all that), but atleast not while you are WEARING A HIJAB!
One may wonder why with such entertainment ready to be found on the bus I don't take it everyday. I would, if it was just the bus. No, this is Toronto. We have to do everything half-assed. We made a subway, but stopped expanding it eons ago, so now it just stops at the edge of Scarborough. So we decided to make an RT. Which just goes two street blocks. And the streetcars? Only downtown. So my journey would be bus,RT,subway,streetcar. Which is hell.

In my car, I get my music, my a/c, my pace and my peace. Screw the environment and money-saving. With the warm spring-like Winter we are having here, global warming is good.



Aisha said...

hahah i also did that but it was our "subway" type of thing and I lasted about 6 wks before I couldnt take public transit anymore and rode. But like you, I always found it entertaining :)

Shabina said...

public transit rocks! i wish michigan had a system that worked as well as, for example, DC's Metro.

But, being the home of the Motor City and all, hell will probably freeze over before that happens.

Alas. People watching is SO fun...

Safiyyah said...

You're hilarious. :-)