We have to dare to be ourselves, however frightening or strange that self may prove to be. ~May Sarton

from my bookshelf

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Scenes from the CTA and NICTD South Shoreline

On my last trip to Chicago, I had the unique pleasure of witnessing several types of crazy on the public transit to, from and in the city.

On my way down, apparently the shock of Michael Jackson's death had not completely worn off on one fellow traveler, as we all had the shared opportunity to listen to the greatest hits of the King of Pop all the way from Michigan City to Millennium Station. Normally, this would not be allowed by the conductors of the train, but maybe they were commiserating in the despair, as they said nothing to the person in question. Lord help me for forgetting my earphones that day!

On the return to Chad's place the evening I was there, apparently some rider invaded the space of his fellow traveler, who proceeded to drop f-bombs as loud as she could so that the entire train could hear that he was invading her space. Instead of simply moving to another empty seat (of which there were many), we were subjected to her colorful use of profanity (far be it from me to judge, as I can drop f-bombs left and right just as well as the next person, but sometimes there is a time and place for it, and screaming it so the entire train car could hear was not one of those occasions). As we were exiting the train, both the screamer and the screamee were exiting with us (of course, this would be their stop too!) and he tried to exit using the door far away from her, and she chased hm down, telling him if he was going to follow her, she was going to call the police. I wanted to point out to her that she was the one doing the following now by chasing him down as he was trying to get away from her, but I felt that that would not be to the best of my health, so I refrained.

On my ride home from Chicago, some poor fellow traveler received a phone call right after we left the city, with what must have been some very upsetting news, as she cried the ENTIRE WAY BACK TO MICHIGAN CITY. The. entire. way. And no matter the amount of consoling her boyfriend tried on her would help the poor girl. I don't like to be mean, because if I were to ever receive bad enough news on the train, lord knows I'd probably be a wallowing mess too, but at that point, I just wanted the poor dear to suck it up and take it like a man!

Ah, the joys of public transit. At least it always allows for some free entertainment!

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