I thought the chatty driver was a substitute, but I fear this is his new route. The subject today is tonight’s Wild game. Once seated, I realize that he is gabbing with the same woman. Soon the lovebirds are reminiscing about the ride in yesterday…how well behaved those children were! True that. I make a mental note to start taking the 9:45, and move on. My mind is on the Princess who boarded ahead of me. She really got on my nerves.
This whole week, I have been able to take notes on the bus to work, tweak the writing on my breaks, and publish by the time I get home. Yesterday, this didn’t happen. Instead, I sat still and began to examine why I give people titles like Princess, and nicknames like G.I. Joe. At some point during the day, I remembered that my Dad did the same thing. For various reasons, he had nicknames for most of the grandkids. For example, my son who teethed on wooden table legs was Little Beaver. Outsiders thought Dad’s nickname for my Nephew Jamie was odd. Jamie was named in honor my older brother James. Jimmy drowned when he was 10, and my Dad never forgave himself, God or anybody else for this tragedy. If a rare and unwitting guest asked about the blond-haired-blue-eyed boy, smiling with his four siblings in early family photos, my little brother and I would cringe, as Dad would respond matter-of-factly, “Oh! That’s the one we threw away in the lake.” Until he was a teenager, my Nephew Jamie never knew why Grandpa preferred to call him Dave. Dad affectionately referred to my Mother as Colonel Klink, and for politicians, popes and in-laws he had some real doosies. So, there is that. My thing for stereotyping behavior and assigning nicknames may be genetic.
What is a Princess? A Princess is of no specific race, color, creed or body type. She often has hair extensions and long fingernails painted a color not found in nature. Handbags, shoes, and fancy cell phone cases are often her most important accessories. She is typically 20-something, and may or may not be beautiful. The primary characteristic of a Princess is her superior attitude. She believes she is special, and resents having to share transportation with the rest of us losers, slobs and bitches. She is entitled to the seat of her choice, whether front or far back, and is not subject to the same rules-of-the-ride the rest of us are. For example, a Princess may not remove her precious child from a stroller and fold it up upon request (see; More Row). A Princess may verbally abuse her future ex-boyfriend on her rhinestone-studded iPhone. She may do so loudly and use obscene language for the benefit of her audience. It does not matter to a Princess if this audience includes a 5-year old boy; thrashing around because his mom’s hands are pressed tightly over his ears. A Princess will board the bus in front of a half dozen people standing in the cold, pouring rain. She will take her time paying her fare, and then ask Chatty-Bob the Bus Driver a stupid question. Yes, this brings us back to Thursday morning…
“What airport does this go to?” Of course, Chatty-Bob has to answer a question with a question, “Do you mean what terminal?” She shrugs, “Yeah, I guess.” He says, “I go to terminal 1.” “Oh..so how do I get to terminal 2?”
Dear god. I cannot take it any longer and interrupt, “Can you please, umm…move it along so the rest of us can get on the bus?” I cannot expect a Princess to care that three slobs are getting soaked to the bone while she blocks the aisle with her doublewide ass and fuchsia roller bag. She moves toward the driver a little and turns to give me a look. A look that tells me I am the Bitch she is forced to share a ride with today. She spits out the words, “Can you say excuse me?” Yet another stupid question. I smile and shake my head, “No, I can’t.”