Not Inclined To Help You

, , , , | Friendly | November 2, 2019

(I am on a seven-and-a-half-hour bus ride in a tiny seat. There are two stops: a long one in the middle and a short one an hour away from my city. The seats are reclinable chairs, and there is very little room for your legs even if the person in front of you doesn’t recline theirs. If they do, it is less than comfortable, and if they recline it twice the room disappears. Most people just recline it once, knowing it wouldn’t be pleasant for the person behind if they did it twice. I never recline it. I’m a short female, about 1,60m or 5’3”. A couple about my age get on the bus on the long stop. The guy sits in front of me, both of us having window seats. He immediately reclines his seat twice, so it rests on my knees. I wait for about ten minutes and then try to talk to him.)

Me: “Hi, could you please–”

Guy: “No! The seat in front of me is reclined, so I’m doing the same!”

Me: “I understand, but you have reclined yours twice, so there isn’t–”

Guy: “I don’t care! They have reclined their seat, and so have I!”

(His poor girlfriend seems to be distressed about his tone. She looks like a quiet girl and obviously isn’t having fun.) 

Me: “All right, I’m just trying to be polite and not to disturb the person behind me.”

Guy: “I DON’T CARE!”

Me: *quietly* “Ooookay.”

(I spent the next hour and a half crossing and uncrossing my legs once a minute, perfectly aware that he was feeling every movement like I was pushing his back. We made the short stop, and when the guy returned to his seat, he adjusted it to the recline-once position without a word. I stopped crossing my legs, though it’d have been sooo easy to keep on doing it for the rest of the journey… I guess I’m not a vengeful spirit.)

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