Sunday, October 03, 2010

Bus Report #553

Yesterday afternoon I schlepped my computer and a stack of books down to Leland Tea to study. When it was time to go, I headed for the 2 Clement bus stop on Sutter and Polk. There were a few people there already: a young woman with earphones, bent over a textbook, a man in a red t-shirt who was playing with some bits of wire or string, and two young twenty-or-thirty-something scruffy-but-handsome guys carrying their guitars and busted-up guitar cases. The one with the piercings strummed a few chords and his friend, who looked a little older and was wearing sunglasses, nodded his head in approval.
I smiled at them. I liked what little of their music they were playing in the bus stop.
The bus arrived a moment later and we all got on, except the man who was playing with the wire or string. He slumped back against the side of the bus shelter and stared off into the distance.
The guitarists sat a few rows ahead of me. They talked and the man with the sunglasses started playing a song on his guitar. I wondered if it was one of their own songs, because it didn't sound familiar, but it sounded good. Folksy, a little bit rock, and I don't know the word for it but he did that thing where you sort of thump the front of the guitar while you play. The man with the piercings started to play his guitar, too. Sunglasses sang a little under his breath.
The girl with the textbook got out on Presidio. Sunglasses watched her leave. He messed up his song. He looked up at Piercings and said, "Aw man, she messed me up." He started the song all over again.
Our bus wasn't crowded but every seat was taken.
I watched and listened to the free concert we were getting. It was nice and mellow. Everyone seemed to be off in their own world, but I knew I wasn't the only person paying attention. An elderly woman sitting across from the guys swayed to the music and nodded her head in approval.
When it was time for her to get off the bus, she clapped her hands and said, "Thank you, very nice, thank you."
The man with the sunglasses grinned and held out his hand. "What, no tip?" he joked.
The man with the piercings pulled the signaler so they could get out at Arguello.
Sunglasses said, "You know, let's go home, smoke a bowl then go get some coffee."
Piercings agreed. At Arguello they wrestled their things down the back stairs.
"Thanks guys, that was nice," I said.
"Hey, you're welcome," said piercings. "See you around."
And they were gone.


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