Tuesday, June 05, 2007

How not to ride a crowded bus

Buy one of these goddamn things right before you get on:

I worked late enough tonight that I missed the last express bus that runs by my office. So I had to schlep to Michigan Avenue to catch an express bus there … and since I had to walk right by H20+ to get to a bus stop, I decided to stop in and get some face moisturizer with a high SPF just like my dermatologist instructed me to start using in March.

The moisturizer I bought was right next to some revolutionary anti-wrinkle stuff that smelled really nice even though it cost the equivalent of three cab rides home from work. But I'm 39 now, and I'm prone to start wrinkling. One of these days. So I bought it too. And since I had my credit cards out I thought I might as well stock up on some of my favorite H20+ spa products, which were 1) on sale and 2) on sale only when you buy them in some freakishly huge two-and-a-half-foot-long wooden display box for some reason. And the moment I squeezed myself into the bus with the damn thing I knew I was bound to hit someone with it before I got home.

Sure enough, once I got it wedged vertically between my legs as I stood in the crowded aisle, it toppled over as we all tried to move back to make room for more passengers. And it landed right on the flip-flopped foot of a woman who made a very painful-sounding OW! noise and looked genuinely hurt as I apologized to her. But she was one of those passengers who refused to move directly to the back of the bus when she got on, instead inching back every stop and forcing the rest of us to inch along with her. I'm not saying she deserved to be crippled by a freakishly long box of skin-care products, but if she had moved to the back of the bus the moment she boarded, I wouldn't have been forced to waddle down the aisle over and over again with the thing wedged between my legs like some egg-bearing penguin, eventually allowing it to become dislodged and dangerous.

If that weren't enough, I banged a kid squarely on the side of the head with it when I got off the bus. Again, I'm not saying he deserved to be a victim of spa-product battery, but he was sitting in an empty double seat bent over a video game with his feet and his whole torso in the aisle. If he'd been sitting upright in the chair like a more evolved bus passenger, his head would probably still be attached to his body and I wouldn't have this unsightly dent in my freakishly huge two-and-a-half-foot-long wooden display box.

But at least I’ll have younger-looking skin. Starting tomorrow, no doubt. I'll be like totally dewy and desirable despite my physical barriers to beauty. Which is more than I can say for the crippled lady and the denty-headed kid I saw on my bus tonight.

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