So, I was taking the bus to work last night. Actually I'd already walked most of the way when I saw a bus approaching and with it the chance to shave a few minutes off the last ~ three-tenths of a mile to the train station. (I was already running like 15 minutes late btw). So to me, the arrival of this bus seemed ''meant to be'' .. and as I happened to be standing right next to a bus stop - with at least two dollars of change in my pockets!! .. So yeah, at that moment I was sending God a little thanku for the helping hand.
But.. as the bus approached closer - it showed no signs of stopping .. at least not until it had driven past the bus stop - at which point the driver applied the brakes and brought the bus to a complete stop in the middle of the street (only missing the actual bus stop by mere ~ 25 yards or so). Not only was he considerate enough to apply the brakes - but he was also kind enough to open the door for me as well!!
And he opened the rear door - not the front one, which I took to possibly mean that I wasn't expected to pay the fare - since we were so close to the last and final stop. (at the subway station).
But it's always best not to assume these things. So after I boarded I walked up to the front of the bus and asked the driver if he wanted me to pay the fare.. and upon doing so discovered true extent of this man's comedic genius.
I remember his routine, word-for-word:
teh bus driver of hilariousness
: ''Do I want you to pay?! .. What kind of question is that? Are you serious? .. OF COURSE I want you to pay, why wouldn't I want you to pay. Why would I make an exception just for you?''
: .. ''Why did I ask? .. because; we are only a tenth of a mile from the T station .. and because you chose to open the back door for me - not the front one.. the place where we customarily pay the fare''
Teh funny man
: .. ''Yeah.. I opened the back door so you wouldn't have to walk so far ..
Next time don't ask - just 'assume' you have pay, just like everyone else.''
<--[grinning so wide that my cheeks are on the verge of tearing .. Oh, teh possibilities!! This man has given me so much to work with!!! .. Oh, it's ON Mr. Man!]
And thus it began.
I figured I'd take the 'gradual' E-Z approach. It is usually very easy to get most ppl worked up all at once, - but if you're after a truly psychotic result -- you need to go the 'gradual' route. (unless of course they are already on the verge of a psychotic episode - in which case there's no challenge involved, so what's the point?)
I leaned over - and said in a very soft and deliberately jovial tone: ''It never hurts - to ask..''
That's all it took.
[His e-x-a-c-t words
''What do you mean it 'never' hurts to ask? Yeah, it DOES hurt to ask! You asked a 'stupid' question.. Basically you asked if you can steal from my company
! What makes you think I'm gonna let you do that? Huh? .. You think they pay me so that I can let people like you steal from them? I don't hand out free...''
^^[I cut him off there]
: ''I take it that's a 'yes' ?''
: ''I asked 'you' - if 'you' wanted me to pay. It was really a very simple yes-or-no question .. Would you like me to repeat it?''
: ''Repeat what?!! .. Listen..!!''
: No, not 'listen' -- 'look
' - at the light, it has turned from red-to-green. Soon it will turn to yellow and then to red. Red means that we can't go any....''
: ''Pay the fare! - and sit down!! Pay the fare and find a seat - some where way back there - away from me!''
So, I put the teh coins in the fare collector, but.. I put in too many!
The last coin I had was a quarter - which put me twenty cents over the fare rate (actually it's not really true that all I had left was quarters - but for now let's assume that it was 'completely' unintentional - and that I had no choice) ..
.. ''There you go mister man, and look I gave you an extra twenty cent tip .. -because you 'earned' it. You see, your ''company'' doesn't appreciate you like I do.''
And then he shouted something totally - no, 'profoundly' unintelligible as I had begun to walk toward the rear of the bus. It was profound - not because of anything I understood by his choice of words - (that as far as I could tell, apparently transcended definition or any dictionary known to man) - but because of the beautiful clarity of his 'tone' - which made it so obvious that he was so close to losing it, so.very.close. You just can't convey something like that with words alone. His tone and abruptness and volume and complete lack of articulation - said it all. As did the fact that he was beginning to pull off to the side of the road.
He pulled aside - and then the doors opened..
''Get off my bus!''
I pretended it never happened!
''Hey! .. YOU!! .. get off - mah bus!!'' ... [i.e. mah bus .. -NOT YOURS!]
..''Oh, no - this is not my stop.. In fact this is not even a bus stop..''
''Oh yeah? .. Well 'this' bus is stopped - and it's not going any-where -- until you get off
?! ''.. I paid you the fare - AND I GIVE YOU A TWENTY CENTs TIP EXTRA ? - and this is the appreciation to show of it?! .. Nope, sorry .. -that's all the tip you get! .. Jeez, you can't even drive us one more block to the last stop?!! .. No!! .. DON'T ANYBODY TIP THAT MAN UNTIL HE TRANSPORTS US - ONE MORE BLOCK - TO OUR DESTINATION!! .. I mean, come on man, no body likes a quitter! Just do your job, there's really not that much to it.''
And that's when the other ppl started to get vocal about the situation as well..
From behind me several voices started complaining;
''Come on.. he paid the fare! Let's go!'' ..
''Why are stopped?''
^^Stuff like that started to fill the bus. Then some ppl actually got up and walked off.
The doors closed, the ride resumed. I took the same exit that I had used to board the bus. And everyone lived happily forever afterwards. Except for the bus driver. Eventually they found the bodies in his basement.. and he died in prison, (sodomy by broom-stick).