I swear I am the only one on the bus that notices we are in great danger every single day.
So those of you who don’t know bus culture, well it revolves around the idea of not paying attention to anyone or anything around you. People staring at their cell phones, people wearing headphones, people looking at the ground, whatever it takes to detach oneself from that special brand of pure banality that only the bus can bring.
But if you take yourself out of that self-inflicted isolation chamber, you will soon realize that the bus is pretty much almost hitting everything in its path and is breaking common norms of driving every wheel-turning moment.
For example, today the bus just ran a red light. Just ran it. Took a hard left on a red arrow. And no one noticed but me. I looked around frantically to see if anyone else had even a slight reaction to this rogue maneuver.
Not one person noticed that our driver has gone ‘vigilante’ on the decent laws of the road.
Now this is not an uncommon occurrence. Every single day my bus takes a 90 degree right onto a one lane road that leads to my work. This is a sharp turn for any vehicle, much more for this beast. And every day the bus makes this turn successfully, but not without scaring the hell out of me that we are going to nick the cars on the left or the biker that is carelessly riding on the right.
On the way home, the bus takes this looping left into a very busy intersection, almost clipping every lamppost and stranded driver in sight. Almost clips.
Whether it is dodging construction sites like the matrix or cutting off a long line of commuters at a merge or going way too fast onto the West Seattle Bridge, the bus ride is possibly the most daring thing I engage in on a daily basis.
Yet despite the constant thrills and spills of ‘Mr Toad’s Wild Ride’, I have yet to experience a true crash. Once the bus clipped the mirrors of another bus and had to walk home and another time the bus just died on the road, but that is pretty good for taking this behemoth 4 times a day for 4.5 years. Maybe these drivers are incredibly adept at what they do; like an urban superhero of sorts. Or maybe pure disaster is lurking ahead of me as I type this, but regardless, I am alive now.
Hmmm, maybe being holed up in a huge metal box is not so bad.