Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Some People Have Worse Mornings Than I Do

bad stuff happens to me. a lot.

now, i realize i bring a lot of it on myself, in that i'm exceedingly clumsy. but the way my life works is that if there is only one faulty paper coffee cup in the whole lot, it will be the one starbucks gives me, and not only will i drip coffee down my shirt on my way to something important, but i will slip and fall on the coffee that dripped to the marble floor in the important building's entryway.

and it's not always totally my fault. like, there was the infamous boston trip wherein a 3 hour drive turned into 7.5, included a thunderstorm, going the wrong way on a one-way street, peeing in an alcove on the harvard campus, my sister losing her wallet in a port-o-potty, finding ourselves in the center of the end of a car chase that resulted in six cops with their guns drawn pulling some guy out of his car window and throwing him into a paddy wagon all of 20 feet away from us, and our would-be whale-watching ship going up in flames (i swear).

so it comes as great surprise to me when unfortunate things happen to people who are not me. like Crazy Aunt Purl's unbelievable flaming-bus story.

and also like the unfortunate CoffeeGirl, who i "met" ("met" = "witnessed") this morning.

CoffeeGirl and her friend were waiting at the bus stop with me. they both had coffee from starbucks. i do not get coffee before getting on muni because you're a.) not supposed to (and i tend to follow rules like that because i'm afraid of getting yelled at) and b.) i know myself and know i will spill. so i envy people who do get their coffee before the bus and enjoy it on the bus while i have to watch them and wait for my caffeine fix.

anyway.

the bus arrived and it was packed. which i hate. usually it's not too bad, since i usually get on an earlier bus (but these days i'm trying to figure out which bus CutieCute gets on so that i can captivate him by, possibly, if i get the nerve, making eye contact, i'm so lame).

but because the bus was packed (and, btw, totally devoid of CutieCute) i have to stand and hold on, packed in with about a million other people, and i'm not very good at this. and CoffeeGirl ends up on the opposite side of the aisle, a few feet in front of me, holding on with one hand while holding her coffee in another. and i have to wonder how good at this she is, too.

at this point, i would like to remind you that i live in san francisco. you know, sf? the place with the hills? yeah.

so while we're stopping and going, stopping and going (as buses do, especially on this line) something happens. i can't see the street ahead of us, but whatever it is that happens, it causes the bus to make an incredible and unexpected downhill lurch.

the entire busload of us lost our balance and collectively lurched along with the bus. there was a group "whoa!" and some people even let out near-screams, because it is really not fun to smoosh into bus people (especially not really hard). i think people would have fallen if there hadn't been so many people to fall into. we all just lurched really hard. as did CoffeeGirl. and CoffeeGirl's coffee.

i swear to you, i am not making this up: CoffeeGirl's coffee flew up, out of her cup, in a geyser-like fashion. it absolutely covered the roof of the bus above where she and a handful of others were standing. it covered her coat. it covered her face. it covered the woman behind her's coat, face, and hair.

people didn't know what to do.

CoffeeGirl didn't know what to do.

so for a few seconds she just stood there, dumbfounded. she was tall, and quite large, and was standing in the middle of a crowded bus drenched in (i'm guessing here, by color and smell) a latte. droplets were streaming down her face. and the face of the woman next to her. and raining from the bus roof.

(and for some unbelievable reason, not dripping on me. how i avoided this is surely some cosmic accident.)

and so the bus started up again. and we all stood there, hushed. and at the next stop, CoffeeGirl got off to go clean herself. the rest of the bus just stayed silent.

and smelled of coffee.

19 comments:

  1. sheer brilliance! makes me miss my morning rides on the 1....

    *reminisces*

    -el snarkster

    ReplyDelete
  2. Whoa!

    WHO in this world EVER believes taking coffee on the bus is a good idea??

    WHO??

    ReplyDelete
  3. OH MY GOD!!! i accidently discovered your blogspot and i am as addicted as an addict can come by. let me just say, you are COMEDY!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. You know, these are the things that happen to me, too. I feel so badly for CoffeeGirl, but even worse for the lady left standing on the bus drenched in coffee. I would have *insisted* on paying for her drycleaning before running away! Ack! :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Ericha2@comcast.net3:24 PM, April 27, 2005

    OMG! Ok..what line do you take? Seriously, you must work in the Financial District so it's probably one of the express lines that flys down Bush, hitting all the bumps along the way, making it impossible to do anything but bounce. (I'm so impressed that you can actually knit on the bus!) I remember my time riding the 38, 31 and 1 express lines, and the Muni drivers almost killing us every single morning. Why anyone would take a steaming hot beverage on board (especially if they've ever ridden Muni before) is beyond me. Congrats on your good luck of not being doused by the latte.

    ReplyDelete
  6. That's hilarious. I think I would've paid to see that. Also, the CutieCute thing reminds me of my own Hotty Hotterson that works down the street. If only, if only.

    Your blog is great :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. you are funny! keep writing! i like these: !!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. First of all... you're a born storyteller. :P Second of all... that story really puts my many klutzy moments into perspective. Who knew I wasn't the only butt of a big cosmic joke.

    Jo's right... I totally would've paid to see that one.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I thoroughly enjoyed that post, as a person who is about as klutzy as it gets (ie tore a ligament in my ankle scraping gum off my shoe) I have to say congratulations on avoiding the latte mishap. I found your blog on CL and I have to say, that I am truly addicted only because I'm a terrible writer and you're basically telling the story of my life - so sometimes it's nice to reflect. Keep up the enjoyable stories.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ooh, reminds me of a few months ago when I saw a dorky red-haired girl (and I say "dorky" affectionately) who's a regular on my train dumped her coffee into some suity guy's lap when our subway car lurched.

    She was as upset as a person could be, saying "I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry," over and over, and I think she did offer to pay the guy's dry-cleaning bill. She wept for the rest of the ride, long after the guy had gotten off.

    Every time I see her--which is pretty often, as I'm pretty consistent in my unpunctuality--I feel bad for her. She was so sad.

    She still brings coffee on the train, though.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Now thats funny. All I ever see are crack-heads and derelicts on my 22-Fillmore ride. Note to self: ride a different bus...anywhere.

    ReplyDelete
  12. glad to hear that san francisco is as horrible as new york.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Sounds like the 1 California to me . . . please verify, dying to know

    ReplyDelete
  14. OMG, and no one else even let loose a tiny little giggle? See, I'm the girl who humiliates herself by having looong bouts of uncontrollable, hysterical, red-faced, laughing fits at the expense of others in such unfortunate situations. I don't mean it maliciously, I just cannot HELP it. Completely understandable, right? But NOBODY laughed? Not even a little?

    ReplyDelete
  15. no, nobody laughed. it was really too shocking.

    it's funny as hell NOW, though.

    none of your guesses as to my bus lines is correct, but the incident occurred on van ness. *gets all mysterious*

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ericha2@comcast.net4:56 PM, April 28, 2005

    Even better...Marina Express! 30X, right? What else runs on Van Ness in the mornings? Anyone?

    ReplyDelete
  17. I laughed so hard at this story that my mother came in (yes, I live with my parents) to see why peals of crazy-person-hyena- laughter were echoing from the computer room. Tears actually came to my eyes.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Clue train: All those people on the bus, and no one could offer a tissue or something to help her clean off?

    I guess I'll have to add more knapkins to my over the shoulder bag, just in case my next bus ride is like this story.

    NOTE TO SELF: Move more kind-hearted street smart kids from the midwest to SF.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I love your blog, its hilarious!! ~

    ReplyDelete