The Friendship Wheel On The Bus Goes Round And Round

| England, UK | Friendly | August 2, 2016

(Normally I drive. Unfortunately, having to take the bus this morning I am sitting next to two young women in their early twenties. I overhear the following:)

Woman #1: “How things going with your step-dad?”

Woman #2: “He is so irritating; he keeps trying to be the man of the house.”

Woman #1: “Oh, really?”

Woman #2: “Yeah, like putting up pictures and opening jars.”

Woman #1: *gently* “Well, it must be nice for your mum. She was always having to pay someone to come on.”

Woman #2: “No, we don’t need him.”

Woman #1: “Didn’t he decorate the front room; that looked really nice.”

Woman #2: “No, he’s an idiot. I don’t know why he stays around.”

Woman #1: “Well, that’s a shame. He seems really nice.”

Woman #2: “Whose side are you on? I’m going to hit him one day.”

(This carries on for several more stops. Some passengers have moved away. I don’t normally interrupt but feel like I have to say something.)

Me: “So, someone has accepted you as one of their own. From what I can tell he seems like a decent guy just trying to get you to like him. You’re a grown woman. Why don’t you act like it?”

(She gets up to argue but her friend quickly chimes in.)

Woman #1: “He’s right and you know it, I don’t know why you don’t give the guy a chance. Your mum seems really happy, and you acting like a child is going to ruin everything.”

Woman #2: “Whatever!” *storms off the bus*

(I ended up having a long chat with her friend and was told the whole story of how much he has had to put up with. I remained friends with her for years afterwards.)

Driving Blind To Compassion

, | | Working | July 24, 2016

(I recently moved to Arizona and take the bus to and from work. Most of the bus drivers are fairly pleasant. On this day a woman was sitting up front and very slowly got off the bus, with the driver assuring her we were near the McDonald’s. A moment after we start moving I notice a red and white walking stick (usually used by people with impaired vision) and I jump out of my seat.)

Me: “Driver, did that woman have a cane? I think she left it!”

Driver: “Oh, yeah, she did.” *driver begins to slow down*

Me: “I’ll just pop out and give it to her. We’re less than a block away.”

Driver: *speeds back up* “Eh, well, she left it; it’s out of my hands.”

Me: “I can just get off.”

Driver: “No, this isn’t a stop! She left it!” *bus is now speeding down the street*

Me: *speechless*

Not A Neutral Feeling On It

| Denver, CO, USA | Friendly | June 14, 2016

Random Drunk Guy: “I like the dogs I know better than the people I know. But then, the dogs I know are all neutered.”

An Asia Minor Lack Of Knowledge

| GA, USA | Learning | May 19, 2016

(We were riding on our way to a competition when the subject of history comes up.)

Friend #1: *says something in Chinese*

Friend #2: “No, I said Asian not Chinese.”

Me: “China is in Asia.”

Friend #2: “No, Asia and China are not together.”

Me: “Asia is a continent and China is a country. China is in Asia. You know, like Mongolia is in Asia, Russia is in Asia—”

Friend #2: “Russia is in Asia? I thought Russia was in Poland?”

Me: “Aren’t you in AP World?”

Friend #2: “Yeah, why?”

(The rest of the ride down I was questioning if she was being serious or not.)

You’re A Clever Trevor

, | HI, USA | Friendly | May 16, 2016

(I’m on my father’s family phone plan, and since he bought my first cell phone I have a number with his area code, a five-hour time difference ahead of mine. For a while I was getting a lot of random calls, business and otherwise, from that area code, with a good chunk of them coming in at three in the morning. As a joke, I recorded a voicemail message in Japanese (since everyone who knows me knows I speak it), and it actually helped; people stopped leaving messages or calling back again. One morning I’m between buses on my way to work, coming in early on a Saturday, and my phone rings. I check the number, recognize the area code, and let it go to voicemail. But the person hangs up before it does, and calls again. They do this two more times before I, already grumpy at the early hour, decide to pick up.)

Me: “Moshi-moshi?” *hello?*

Man: *ten seconds of silence* “…Trevor?”

Me: *I’m a girl* “Ah, Trevor? Dochira-sama desu ka?” *Trevor? who is that?*

Man: “Is this Trevor’s phone?”

Me: *waiting for the light bulb to go on* “Ano, gomen nasai, watashi no eigo ga waruinda kara…” *I’m sorry, my English is bad…*

Man: *thirty seconds of loooong, uncomfortable silence* “I guess I have the wrong number…”

Me: *in Japanglish* “Ah, hai! Rongu numba!” *yes! wrong number!*

(I hung up on him.)

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