I was walking down the street and I could hear raised voices, I then noticed the bus parked in the middle of the road, blocking the one-way street, with traffic now clogging up the signal-controlled junction behind, they obviously weren’t expecting this scenario as the road was completely clear ahead.
The raised voices were coming from a wheelchair user and their companion who were hurling abuse at the bus driver though his open door. It was an old bus, with a two-foot high step and an aisle that you have walk up slightly at an angle so you don’t dunt a hip-bone off of the handles at the edge of the seats.
The wheelchair user and friend were berating the driver for denying their right to use public transport, the driver was sitting there behind his spit-and-stab-proof shield looking confused saying. “But… but… but….”.
Utterly pointless, the whole affair. Both sides of that one will leave with slightly less understanding and a lot less tolerance.
Sometimes it’s good to stand up and be counted, others it really is best just to leave it.

I waited for the green man, I waited through several go signals for the traffic until it was my turn. I left the kerb in a manner not entirely dissimilar to the green man that indicated my freedom to cross, jaunty and yet purposeful. As I reached the other side a car decided to edge into the maelstrom of late Friday afternoon traffic and into my clearly marked safe walking zone when the green man was still flying high.
I didn’t leave than one.

I saw a woman having to stop on the steep hill as she approached the lights as they turned red. What with her arguing with her husband beside her, trying to ignore the unrestrained child in the back who appeared to be reaching for the stereo in the front and talking on her mobile phone, it really was inevitable that she would stall her motor as she tried to pull away steeply uphill when the lights changed. Her inability to apply the footbrake or handbrake during this and the consequent backwards freewheeling was the unexpected bonus.

If I had lunch in the city everyday my head would change shape with such constant shenanigans.

6 thoughts on “Indigestion”

  1. and that’s one of the reason’s I live in the countryside. I have also built up a suprisingly healthy dose of Xenophobia too over the years ie treat everyone around me as idiots until proven otherwise.

    Sad but true

  2. We all suffer a little then?

    You know, I think I’m mellowing though. I’m still an interventionist, but standing back and laughing is just as much an option these days.

    There was one a couple of weeks back though….
    I was meeting Craig in town for a cuppa and I was early, so I went to the bank to do some business stuff in the meantime. On the way there a shouting leaflet hander-outer (is there a name for these people) who attempted to hand me one. I read his t-shirt first to see what he was touting and I had to say “Ah, no”. As I passed him he shouted “Get yourself an education”.
    I went to the bank, and on my way back the leafletist suddenly found me nose to nose with him “Tell me about my education…”.
    I waited with him until Craig got into town, to trouble, no fighting, no more leaflets went out while I was there either, I did however laugh a lot. He didn’t like my suggestion that he could try Somalia for his leafleting campaign, but apparently he was a martial arts expert who chose not use use his powers. It was just brilliant.
    Pointless? Yes, but sometimes it’s good to let the mischevious psychotic child that’s sitting behind the controls have free reign so that “mellowing” doesn’t become “complacent”.

  3. I would probably have reported the guy to his organisation (unless he was leafleting for The Rude Society). I wonder if it is rose-tinted spectacles, but I still remember 25 years ago seeing the whole traffic in Dundee Perth Road coming to a standstill because an old man (must have been 103) was reversing out of a parking bay (not sure how he got in there in the first place). It took him what seemed like ages to get going. No one hooted their horn, no sighing and rolling of eyeballs, no revving up. Just quiet, resigned, orderly waiting from all concerned. I don’t think I’m dreaming this up. I think it was really like that. Of course, no mobiles then, and you didnae have to spend ages choosing which electricity supplier you wanted, which phone company, which insurance, the lot. And shopping was a question of choosing between 725 varieties of cheddar looking remarkably the same. I blame choice. It’s made our lives so exasperating and exasperated. Think about it: Akto v LaserComp, Haglofs v Rab. It’s the source of all evil, choice, that’s what it is.

    Just jokin’… Good read, your story, as ever.

    But apart from choice, it seems as if the thing we’re most desperate to do is getting home to turn on the computer and check mail and blogs (it’s the first thing I do, and I do get mad at slow drivers on the A82…). So we hate anything getting in the way of our screen.

  4. Choice is indeed a two foot deep swamp between you and what you want to be doing.

    The damned electric light box, aye, a curse and a blessing.

    The unexpected patience incident you recall above echoes one I saw years back. Anniesland junction west of Glasgow, it a bit of a maze, all short stretches of road with multiple lanes and enough lights to make it look like a Christmas tree from above I’d imagine. After the last revamp a car got it very wrong and ended up facing the wrong way into oncoming traffic, but everyone stopped and let the driver get themselves out of harms way, and life went back to normal.
    I’m so glad that now and again it’s the good parts of people that gets connected, we don’t have to get together just for football or riots. There’s maybe hope for the species yet.

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