Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bus Report #718

This morning on the 22, two 6:30 AM drunks tried to explain to their friends, a pair of junkie boyfriends, where they were going on Potrero and how to get downtown from there later on.
"It's just right there, 16th and Potrero," said the more sober of the two drunk men. He leaned forward, grasping the pole, and pointed vaguely out the window. The other drunk man sat behind me. His breath was labored and he stunk like old booze and something more chemical, but it was too early in the morning for me to figure out what it was.
One of the boyfriends, older, bearded, said something to the younger boyfriend, round-faced with black nail polish. The younger man nodded and ran his hand through his hair.
I got out before they did, but ten minutes later I caught sight of the four of them, crossing Potrero in the opposite direction, carrying steaming cups of coffee in their hands.

Bus Report #717

Rode past that house on Fillmore again last night. The bus stopped at the light and I snuck a peek at the window, looking for the dark-haired, bearded guy who always seems to be there.
And he was there, standing in the center of the frame, still for a moment like a video on pause.
I watched him until we started moving again - less than a second, I think - and then he turned away from the window and disappeared.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bus Report #716

The other night I ran in to a former early-morning commute buddy on Clement Street. At first I couldn't place her; it was light out, we weren't standing at a bus stop and she wasn't wearing the warm hat and jacket she usually wore in the mornings.
"Hey," she said, "how are you?"
"Good," I replied. "Where've you been?"
"I got a new job," she said. "So I get to sleep in until nine!"
I congratulated her and she said, "Yeah, it's better, but I miss talking to you while we wait."
I thought that was sweet. I told her I missed chatting with her, too, and that I was sure we'd see each other in the neighborhood.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Bus Report #715

It was cold when I left the coffee shop, and the fog was blowing down over the Richmond in massive sheets. I huddled in the bus stop - it had been so much warmer a few hours earlier - and waited for the 38.
When the bus arrived, the driver threw open the door and said, "You look cold, hurry up!"
I smiled at him and got on the bus, and sat down.
At the next stop a few more folks got on. The driver called back to us, "Can you feel the heater? I just turned it on."
"Thanks," we all said, in unison.
By  the time we got to my stop, the bus was good and toasty. I hopped off and waved to the driver, who nodded and honked at me before he drove away.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Bus Report #714

On a stretch of Fillmore near my old apartment, someone is renovating a building with a large picture window facing the street. A couple of times recently I've seen a young man with dark hair, a mustache and a thin beard looking out the window, standing on a ladder or carrying cans of paint across the room.

The other day our #22 bus was idled at the light. I looked toward the window and there was the young man, standing in the middle of the room, in his grey jockeys, slowly stepping into a pair of pants.

He paused when he saw me (or the half-dozen other passengers equally riveted) watching him. Then he grinned and buttoned his jeans, and crossed the room out of sight.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Bus Report #713

Seen this afternoon on the 22 Fillmore:

A well dressed woman (casual yet expensive-looking oatmeal colored linen skirt and salmon pink sweater) reading an issue of a magazine entitled, Garden & Gun.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Bus Report #712

This morning I got on the 22 and the driver, the older woman with the permed, dyed blonde hair and the jaunty hats, said, "Well, this is the last day I'll see you, I'm switching to an earlier route."
"That's too bad," I said. "Unless it's a better schedule for you."
"Not better," she said, "Just earlier."
"Well, good luck!" I said, and went to sit down.

The eighties got on at the next stop. Today she wore a jacket with shoulder pads, one of her high-waisted skirts, and thick black tights with her Reeboks.

The teens who get on in front of the Fillmore Cafe chatted with the driver for a minute and went to sit in the back of the bus like they always do.

A quiet man, who usually rides the bus with his extremely adorable little daughter, got on by himself and sat down in front of me. He always smells so good - like Ethiopian Berbere spices - and today was no exception. I took a few deep breaths and vowed to dig out the recipes from the Ethiopian cooking class I took at City College.

A few stops later I got a seat mate. He began reading the September issue of The Believer. I tried to read a couple of the articles but his arm was in the way.