Monday, January 29, 2007

bus community

the bus is a community. the people you find on the bus are from all kinds of backgrounds and ages, and they share the ride together, and this sharing is a building of community. it works, this melting pot on wheels, it works almost all the time. problems are rare and stick out like a sore car.

the driver is the closest thing to an authority figure, but the driver does not have much pull when it is one against twenty or more people riding the bus. the community has a way of enforcing itself. riding a bus a little like looking back at how cities worked before cars and big police forces. a look can slow you down. a look can make a person behanve, if it is one person acting out and twenty others enforcing with their eyes.

because sometimes that car ego does come out on a bus ride. sometimes there is somebody on the bus who is better than everybody else, and they act that way, and they act the selfish fool. but there is everybody else on the bus, and even if you think you are an island you slow down a bit seeing all those other faces. drivers can barely see faces thru windshields. drivers share the world road with ghosts, while bus riders look around and can see so clearly that they are sharing the world with real people, people with coats and hats and ways of walking and language. and sometimes with cell phones.

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