Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Driving Permit Part 2

I went the social security department to get a new social security card. The service was quick and efficient. When you enter the waiting room there is a computer with large colorful buttons on a touch screen.
Lost Card/replacement
New Card Application

Two things though, in the waiting room the chairs were not facing the window where the customer service people helped folks. I guess they don't want to see the bored and anxious, annoyed faces of the patrons.
I had to really push myself to go. I had both girls and I was going to be on a long bus ride and then a significant walk in a strange neighborhood. It was a warm day and it was a very busy area, no trees. Zooming cars it was not made for walkers.
A hefty man with beautiful long locks helped me. He was quick.
We saw a work desk that went up and down instead of the chair.

We waited for the bus to take us back home in front of a BMW car sales lot. Finally the bus came after 15 minutes. In front of us, zipping zooming cars. Finally an accordion bus. We got on and the bus smelled like sulfur, like one of those stink bombs that kids would let off in the hall way at school. We sat down. I said Phew! The man next to me said- that's what hell smells like. Another man walked by and said-it smells like a perm. Folks acted normal to the smell that dissipated as the bus drove on.

My card came a week later.

I went back to DMV with new social security card, mail from the social security department, passport, mail from my bank.
A woman who yelled -NEXT helped me. She seemed almost happy to tell me I did not have enough identification. She said with the social security letter I needed the actual envelope too! I did not bring any bills! Why didn't I bring a bill. I really thought it was enough.
I searched my purse for something, nothing!
I was so upset!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Driving Permit Part 1

Today went to get my driving permit.
I had my social security card (which I laminated when I was 18 years old), a passport, bank statement, and other pieces of mail. I waited on the short line that was held together by faux velvet dividers. All types of people on the line. Finally it was my turn. My social security card was laminated! A laminated social is not acceptable it says so right here. I asked for a scissor. I cut the edge of the shiny card and as I peeled it I saw it was tearing the card. I could not pass go!

Friday, October 16, 2009

memo to the drunk/high guy dancing

To: The drunk/high man dancing in the rain at the bus stop


RE: Dancing Drunk in the Street

I know the music coming out of the fish fry place was bumping, but outside, in the cold rain, with no umbrella is just not the place to be dancing, especially dancing like a toddler with ZERO rhythm.

I also wanted to comment on the fact that tumbling into the street with its moving cars and trucks could have gotten you very hurt, yet you kept dancing even as all of us transit riders gasped. I was worried for you dude. A good guy took you by your arm and helped you out of the street and you were clueless and still dancing. You were feeling good, huh, but you already had bandages on one side of your head, you don't want any more hurts. So, why not go home, turn up the radio and boogie your heart out there. Also everyone was laughing at you AND someone was video taping you on their Iphone so you will either wind up on You Tube or AFV.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Dear Transit Autority Letter 2

Dear Transit Authority

Why do you have all those cameras on the bus if you are not even gonna try to catch the dude who pees by the back doors.

Transit Rider

Bus Etiquette

Always get up for people, not just women but people carrying babies and children.

Always get up for a pregnant woman. And if you are not sure then just get up without making a comment about her impending delivery date.

I've been seeing a lot of folks not getting up for the above mentioned. Get the hell up lazy bones. Why T H do you need to sit so bad so you can get to your destination and sit some more. Maybe watch TV or type into your all important cell phone computers.

And of course make sure you get up for old people, handicapped folks, blind, drunk (cause you don't want them falling on you if the bus makes a sudden stop).

F it just stand.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Blind Woman and her toddler


Blind Woman and her toddler

A black Labrador seeing-eye dog guides a blind woman into the sing along story-time at this library around my way. The woman has a toddler in a carrier on her back. He looks at us and waves. She seems familiar with the layout. There are tables pushed against a wall. Her fingers trail the tables as the dog guides her through the rec room. Women and children open up the circle for them. She sits on the floor and takes the toddler out of the backpack.

Mamas, dads, nanas and nannies sit on a blue, alphabet mat with sweet, chubby babies on our laps. Several of the children refuse to sit still and are being chased. The story-time lady gives everyone rattles to make music with. She forgets the lyrics to "We're going to Kentucky."

The blind woman’s little boy has a monkey backpack with a leash attached to it. He keeps having to be pulled back away from the crates of colorful scarves and furry animal puppets that he can see. She tries to hold him while singing, "Are you sleeping".

Her baby sits for a moment and he gets squirmy again. He has bells on the back of his sandals so she can keep auditory tabs on him.
The child next to the beautiful, shiny black seeing eye dog is playing with it's tail. It does not react. The dog lays heavy on the mat waiting for her next task. The children pet him, some avoid him as we march around in a circle. The mom stays to the side and marches in place leaving the dog in the center.
At the end of the story-time a few of us are left gathering our children and talking. The blind mom comments on her son missing his nap the day before. This gets us all into a lively toddler sleep deprivation discussion. She gathers her son and herself to leave. I stay behind as my daughter climbs up and down and up and down a few steps and stands next to her toddler friends.

I sometimes find it challenging to leave the house with my own toddler. There are diapers with changing pad and snacks, wipes, entertainment, stroller, change of clothes, juice, book. Then your own keys, phone, bag, money, jacket... Then the getting changed and dressed and shoes on....I tried to imagine what she dealt with doing it as a blind person. Leaving the house has to be an act of daily courage. Could I be that brave in my everyday life?

I wondered how she got to the story-time. Then one day I saw her waiting for the light to change, toddler on her back and her seeing-eye dog very attentive as cars and buses rumble passed.

I saw her again recently, this time walking with just the walking stick and her toddler. He had the same monkey backpack with the leash attached. They walked up the block to the bus stop where I was. They turned the corner as a bus pulled up. Her child said, "Bus mommy."
She said, "Already?"
I said, "It's a 22 bus."
"That's what I need."She said.
The bus driver lowered the bus steps for her to get on easier. She picked up her son and put him on. She stepped in and up and then went in her pocket for change. Doors close. My older daughter and her friend who had witnessed the two were staring at the departing bus. Then they looked at each other in amazement and said, "Whoa!"

And then I see her again at the supermarket. She was pushing a stroller and was carrying a basket. There was a somber looking worker walking with her. I heard her say, "sweet potatoes".
I wonder if he will help her pick good produce.


I took the crowded bus after work. It is filled with students and regular folks. I could walk the ten blocks but seriously after a full day of work it feels like twenty blocks. I get on and the bus is humid with the breath of many warm lungs. I hold on trying not to bump anyone or touch anyone though we are only centimeters apart.

A woman gets on the bus. She says,
-I have just had dialysis can I please have a seat.
The bus was silent. I heard crickets. No one got up. And then finally someone in the middle of the bus got up. We moved out of the way and the woman from dialysis started to file her nails with an emery board. She looked like a healthy woman. My heart broke a little bit.

I squeeze my way to the back of the bus and this in not one of those regular city buses. This is these new fangle double buses with an accordion in the middle. Sometimes when the bus gains speed the back of the bus sort of snaps a little out of control, like a roller coaster. The bus in the size of two buses. It is crowded in the but not sardine can. I find a seat behind the mohawk twins. Two middle school/early high school brown young men. One has a blue tinge in his mohawk and the other has a slight pink mohawk, diamondish studs in both of their ears. A girl with a Louis V head tie and maybe house slippers is on the phone. Huge group of folks at the bus stop they get on and still no one wants to move back. She finally moves back climbing the two steps to the top. She stands next to the twins seat. The mohawk twins are giving her the mean eye.
-I did say excuse me. She says loudly and with great attitude. To the twin on the right.
They both blink at her with attitude, teeth are sucked and cold eyes rolling.
She gets back on the phone.
I get off at another crowded bus stop.

Friday, October 9, 2009

baby on a bike

Saw a guy without a shirt on, he was holding a baby and talking on a cell phone, while riding a bike.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The beers on the bus

A woman was drinking a large can of beer wrapped in a brown paper bag, she was sitting next to a guy who turned out to be her brother. He was drinking an equally large can of beer wrapped in a paper bag. The bus was crowded and somehow I wound up standing near them.
The woman was having one of these cell phone conversations WHERE EVERYTHING IS SAID REALLY LOUDLY FOR NO REASON or because of drunkenness.
The man offered me a seat.
She paused from her phone convo and said to her brother, "If you didn't offer her a seat I would have busted you in your God D&%^% head!"
I laughed and when I saw he was not laughing I quickly stopped. I thought she was kidding. He stood by the back door and put his tall beer in the garbage bag tied to a pole.
There were children sitting next to us. She said into her cellphone,
"You're lucky there are some kids sitting next to me or I would be cussing your ass out!"
"You got some candy? You know what kind of candy I mean!" For some reason that sounded like some kind of drug deal.
She started to describe her looks to the person on the phone. No comment she did not look like her description-drunk, old haggard weave, stank, loud, she didn't mention any of these things.
She then gave the phone to her brother and she hawk eared and eyed him. He was trying to describe her on the sneak tip and she's like "I already described myself. I'm gonna stab you in your neck if you don't stop that stupid sh*t!"
He complained into the phone about her violent nature. Not good for the blind date I think they were arranging.
She said, "I stopped fighting! It was your fault I would be getting into all those fights."

Friday, October 2, 2009

Dear Transit Authority Letter 1

Dear Transit Company

During rush hour buses should run every five or six minutes not every fifteen!!
It's rush hour so people are rushing. When we have to wait so long, it's no longer rushing and that could make us late. So come on just add a few more buses. Hey just take a couple of those almost empty ones I sometimes see during off peak hours, there not that busy...give them something to do.


Dear Transit Authority Letter 1 Draft

Dear Transit Assholes

During rush hour buses should run every five or six minutes not every fifteen!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Handsome man

A handsome man gets on the bus. He is smooth looking and seems to take very good care of himself. He is wearing a suit and has two canes. He is missing a leg. He gets on bus and sits down effortlessly. He reminds me of Blair Underwood circa 1990's dry curls and everything.