in transit

Yesterday I had a somewhat dramatic bus ride.

I boarded the 99 at UBC and began my trek home. I was rather absorbed in the book I am currently reading (Jitterbug Perfume) and rather unaware of the comings and goings of those around me. That is until a particular fellow boarded with his backpack in tow. He sat himself next to me and then a moment later shuffled over by one seat leaving a space between us.

Once the bus started rolling he raised his backpack about half a meter and the let it drop to the floor. The percussive power of his bag’s mass against the bus floor was both startling and annoying. I kept my eyes on the page. He leaned in close. I could feel his breath on my cheek as he spoke. “You better hope I don’t start swinging this. It’s full of cans. And when I start swinging, I don’t stop.”

As it seemed negotiation was perhaps not the preferred discourse of this brute, I elected to adopt a position of indifference. I neither looked up nor altered my breathing, though I felt my ears redden and my heart pick up a few beats.

Having apparently not found a suitable confrontation in me, he turned away and began talking at various passengers. Eventually he began offering startlingly specific hygiene advice to some of the women on the bus. My patience and tolerance promptly evaporated. I navigated my way to the front of the bus and worked with the driver to make disembarking arrangements for this decidedly unpleasant fellow.

For my troubles, in addition to the complimentary shots of adrenaline, I now have my name in yet another police report.

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