Bus Stop… Or Therapist’s Office?
Most days, I try not to spend more time than is necessary at the main bus stop on Cherry Street, and in fact I regularly attempt to actually time my leaving for the stop to coincide with the -5 to -10 minute mark or thereabouts. Mostly, it’s a time management thing, which might lay to rest any musings some of you might have concerning how it is that I can handle so many projects at once. I’m also not the most patient person in the world when it comes to public transportation, and the “regulars” of the bus stop are, often enough, professional loiterers with a veritable airport conveyor belt of personal baggage from which to pull on a daily basis. Loudly, even.
So, seeing as I’ve been remiss in my blogging duties, here are my abbreviated thoughts about the above…
A woman in her thirties and sporting quite the nearly-shaved head is going on and on, decrying some apparently indiscriminate suitor (not present) who buys her fancy clothes (such as the beaten blue flannel shirt and jeans she’s wearing and referencing to the unlucky person who’s having to hear all of this), jewels (none of which present), and a car (which must explain the need for a bus), but won’t leave her alone. The next couple of my minutes were spent actually trying to envision the slobbering troll who would find this butchier than butch lady even remotely attractive. She had a hard face, chiseled jaw, and angry eyes, and could probably hold her own in a barfight. Hell, I thought I saw stubble! At any rate, she’s one of many bus stop denizens to prostitute her life problems to anyone who will hear it. Which reminds me…
Although it’s probably happening elsewhere, there is definitely a sort of downtown-grativating mess of folks (especially at the Cherry Street bus stop)… let’s call them Debris of the Caucasian Variety… who simply cannot shut up in public about their overboiling kettle of stupid mistakes, bratty kids, abusive boyfriends, arrests, court dates, probation, parole, drug habits, drunken fuck-ups, employment terminations, evictions, and the list goes well on. If I were a kinder person, I might call it pathos, but all it really comes down to is embarrassingly loud, expletive-filled tirades mostly about situations to which the obsessed complainer is wholly complicit. If you’re a Psych major at UVM, it would behoove you to spend a number of sessions at the main bus stop and the nearest Church Street corner to observe this spectacle of passive-aggressiveness, blatant denial trips, developmental regression, attention whoring, and a really good reason to support passive (or even active) eugenics. I’m telling you, someone should get a concealed camera and make a public access show out of all of this. No, I mean it. Really. Maybe some folks, as a result of viewing themselves on the cathode God-replacement that is television, would actually contemplate their behavior before committing it. Maybe.
Although I’m not sure why I’m still amazed at this stage of the game, it really does astound me how utterly public some of these people are about their pitiful lives and the bullshit that encapsulates it. There has to be that point in the development of these people (yes, I said “these people” — deal with it) where their lives are so pointless and vapid that they simply give up and A) crave attention to feel necessary, B) want someone to agree with their screwy and desperate thinking in hopes of validation, and/or C) are just so stupid that they don’t even know they’re making a monumental scene (and probably don’t care, if they do know). In any case, they are not going to win any award for self-respect or healthy living.
And the way some of them treat their children makes me think that maybe Hitler was right about a couple of things. And while our government won’t be enacting any forced sterilizations anytime soon, it’s really obvious that not only should some of these not-so-upstanding citizens avoid breeding, they should definitely not be allowed to raise children — theirs or anyone else’s. In addition to the unreasonably small age difference between many a parent and child (or is that child and child?), the parental skills of these people are sorely lacking, and as a result are merely replicating more and more of their own — like a clone population of repeating social retardation, substance abuse, career instability, and whatever other bad habits and piss-poor genetics make it down the line. In fact, here is the basic rundown for “teaching” their children…
Child does bad thing: scream at him/her LOUDLY, or hit him/her HARD.
Child does good thing: ignore it.
Funny that the child has figured out something the parent is too braindead (and probably under the influence of something narcotic) to fathom: since the child only gets attention under misbehavior and not for good behavior, guess which one he or she will choose when wanting attention again? This whole dynamic goes over the head of the idiot parent who then wonders why the kid won’t listen or behave. And, oh, but I’m so convinced that some of these people, while in the commission of beating their small children in public, would not or could not understand why the police officer approaching them might take issue with it. Our jails are probably filled to the brim with their type.
So, if you’re wandering by the main bus stop and you hear some incoherent but insanely blaring rants about run-ins with the law or losing yet another job or out of control kids, grab yourself a seat on one of the benches and stay awhile. Enjoy the show. Hell, round up a snack from one of the vendors on Church Street and make an afternoon of it. It’s Schadenfreude on tap!
Then, take a nice, deep breath and appreciate the fact that your life is probably not only better than theirs in very quantifiable ways, but intentionally and mindfully so.
Natural stratification, as always, wins sooner or later.