Reflections on riding the bus from an anonymous, disgruntled suburbanite

Waiting for the bus.
Waiting for the bus.
  • Riding the bus for the first time without getting lost produces feelings of accomplishment. Being confident you don’t look lost, on the other hand, is an advanced skill.
  • Potentially falling up the stairs once while embarking the bus does not erase aforementioned feelings of accomplishment.
  • Everyone on the bus has a story.

  • Sitting on a crowded bus, in a side-facing seat, makes it very difficult to avoid eye contact with people you don’t know. It also makes it hard to figure out where they’ve been and where they’re going while appearing disinterested.
  • The woman sitting behind me on #13 in between Cedar and Union has been hurt by someone. And there’s a voicemail waiting for him.
  • Freedom is not parking on city streets.
  • Music sounds better when it’s traveling through ear buds while on the bus. You are the star of your very own music video.
  • Anyone can ride the bus. Anyone. Not just the people like you. It’s a good way to see yourself as a part of the culture.
  • It’s a different perspective than driving. If you can finagle a separate seat for your bag and get the whole “which bus do I need to get from here to there” thing out of the way, it’s actually kind of relaxing.
  • Motion sickness caused by school buses and 15-passenger vans does not necessarily translate to city buses. #winning
  • The bus driver doesn’t care that you’re new to “the whole bus riding thing” and can’t remember how to swipe your Orca card. He will yell at you to swipe it the right way. Twice. And, you will feel like a child while you fight back tears.
  • If you start smelling cigarette smoke, there’s a decent chance you chose a bad place to stand at the bus stop.
  • It’s ok to put your bag in another seat as long as there are plenty of other open seats. If someone glares at you, you can either ignore them and avoid eye contact or you can move your bag into your lap and scoot over. Who knows? Maybe you’ll get to hear a story.


What have you learned about yourself or someone else from taking public transit?

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