Friday, November 21, 2008

Tales of a Bus Rider

When I first started commuting to work by bus, I hated it. Since then, I’ve learned to embrace it and even be thankful that I don’t take my car to work every day.

1. It’s better for the environment
2. I get lots of reading time
3. I rarely put gas in my car. I fill up maybe once every 3 weeks. Which makes visiting Rob less financially straining.
4. My company pays for the majority of the bus pass, so I’m seriously saving money. Especially when gas was $4/gallon.
5. When everyone else is working late, I can use the excuse “I have to catch my bus” and get the hell out of dodge!! (I don’t really do that. I just take a later bus. Ok. Fine. I would do that if it got really late)

Sometimes, though, things happen that make me forget all of the positive reasons for taking public transportation.

Today was one of those days.

I hopped on the bus this morning and took a window seat. I almost always take a window seat. Generally, I read or pull out my iPod, but today I got wrapped up in staring out the window. Weird I know, but this fact becomes important later.

A man sat down next to me. I glanced over and responded to his “Hi. Good Morning.” He seemed like a normal bus commuter. I’m horrible at guessing ages, but I’d put him in his mid to late 40s.

I continued staring out the window and thinking that I should open my book and start reading.

A few minutes into the ride the dude starts talking to me. I do not enjoy strangers talking to me in the morning, but I tried to be polite.

Middle-aged Stranger: Can I ask you a few questions?
Me: Um. Questions? Really? OK. (me thinking: you have to be effing kidding me. Why do I always get stuck next to people that want to talk to me?)
Middle-aged Stranger: What’s your name?
Me: Kristi.
MAS: What kind of music do you listen to?
Me: Um. I listen to lots of different stuff.
MAS: OK. Here’s a tough one. When I look over, you’re staring out the window deep in thought. What are you thinking about?
Me: Nothing really. Just looking out the window I guess. (like I’m really going to tell him that I was daydreaming about my boyfriend. I’m a really good daydreamer. I can zone into my own head with very little effort. All of this is almost too embarrassing to admit even here. )

Then he paused for a while. I went on looking out the window. I wanted to open my book, but I thought it might look rude now that he had initiated conversation.

He didn’t pause for long. As soon as we turned downtown he started up again.

MAS: I have another question for you.
Me: Ok. (dear god will this never end)
MAS: How about you come and play a game of pool and go to dinner with me tonight?
Me: Um. Um. Sorry. I have plans tonight. (Is he for real? This isn't really happening, is it?)

Being hit on is always a little strange for me (socially awkward when put on the spot remember), but this was just plain icky weird. I know guys have a tough job. It’s hard to ask someone out, but the DUDE was MIDDLE AGED. That means he was my DAD’S AGE. Have I unknowingly crossed the age threshold where almost 50 year old men think that it is appropriate to ask me out? Furthermore, he asked me out for tonight. A Friday night. Do I look like the type of girl who doesn’t have plans on a Friday night? Granted, I don’t have plans, but my inflated ego I thought I was still young and attractive enough for guys to assume I was busy!! I mean no disrespect to women who like their men 20+ years older than them, but it is so not my bag. Let's not forget that it was 7 AM. That is just way too early to be asking someone out. I hadn't even had my coffee yet! Oh and can y'all imagine how awkward it was for the rest of the bus ride. I don't think I breathed until he got off at his stop. I wanted to just curl into myself and die! This really wasn't my idea of a great start to my day. What an uncomfortable morning.

Rob was absolutely no help. I emailed him about it as soon as I got to work. His response? "That's awesome. My girlfriend is a bus babe." I don't think he gets it.

April thinks I should go to Wal-Mart and get one of those fake engagement rings to wear whenever I use public transportation. That’s not a bad idea. Or maybe it's time for Rob to consider buying me a real one!!

I now have a new bus rule. Never look out the window of a bus. Always be inaccessible and busy with a book or an iPod!!!


Melissa said...

HOLY WOW!! That seems so crazy to imagine someone asking someone else out on the bus, and to make it that night. There is no explaining why he asked you out, other than maybe he does it a lot on the bus he did start out asking all kinds of questions, maybe it's a

Oh you are to cute about the ring, I think that's a great idea ;)

On a side note why is it if a man has a wedding band they get hit on more?! That one gets my goat! LOL

Cherish said...

I agree with Melissa, maybe its his system. He probably gets rejected a lot but its worth a chance for him if it works sometimes I guess.

Anonymous said...

how can you leave the house without your coffee?

i'm on my 3rd cup before i get out the door and thats w/a coffee in hand

by the way- the ring trick doesn't work. back when i felt that was necessary (suuuuper long time ago, cuz now i have the kid- LOL) i wore my old engagement ring and it never stopped a dude.

7am is way too early for that kind of stuff.

SBW said...

thanks for the laugh. hopefully you won't run into him again :)

Chantal said...

Hi Kelli, just hopped over here from Literally booked. Holy Cow that is just weird. I hate being asked lots of questions, a man who thinks that playing 20 questions with a stranger is going to result in a date is just crazy. I don't take the bus anymore but I was never a fan of talking to strangers on the bus.

Jennylynn said...

I gotta wonder how long he was studying you before he decided to ask you a bazillion questions lol.
Take it as flattery, seriously. I always joke, "Mommas' still got it". lol But then again I AM older than you. lol

Astarte said...

Hey, baybee...

HA! How awful! I used to ride the Metro in DC, and I *hated* when men sat next to me. UGH.

The ring is a good idea. Alternatively, you could wear one of those boingy-headband things with mistletoe on it and make yourself look really desperate. That would probably drive them off, too. OR, get a maternity belly pad. Boom, problem solved. :)