Seated But Not Defeated

| MN, USA | Friendly | November 25, 2016

(I’m hobbling around on crutches after surgery, and my foot is in a plaster cast nearly to my knee. Naturally I tend to plop myself down on the first available seat on the bus — the seats reserved for the handicapped that face outward instead of forward — and tuck my crutches to my side. A woman gets on the bus at the next stop, spots me, and sighs.)

Woman: *very loudly* “WELL, D***, NOW SOMEONE’S GOT MY SEAT.”

Me: *startled, slightly confused, I offer a small smile and go back to my book*

Woman: *even louder* “HEY. YOU. GET UP. THAT’S MY SEAT!”

(I realize she’s talking to me and glance up again. She stomps on my good foot, knocks into my crutches, and kicks my cast. I yelp in pain.)

Person Next To Me: “Lady, knock it off! She has every right to sit here.”

Me: “What the hell is wrong with you?! You kicked my bad leg because you want to sit here?!”

Woman: “THAT’S. MY. SEAT.”

Me: “Seats are not assigned on a PUBLIC BUS. Go sit somewhere else. There are plenty of seats open.”

Driver: “What’s going on?”

Woman: *shrieking* “SHE HAS MY SPOT! THAT’S MY SPOT! MAKE HER MOVE!”

Person Next To Me: “This crazy b**** kicked this young lady and started yelling!”

Driver: “Lady, if you don’t leave her alone I’ll kick you off. Either sit down somewhere else and shut up, or I call the cops and have them haul you off. Your choice.”

Woman: “I can’t BELIEVE THIS! I’m just trying to RIDE THIS BUS AND YOU ARE ALL BULLYING ME!”

(She tried to grab me, but I grabbed one of my crutches and whacked her arm before she could, which made her start shrieking again. In the end the cops were called, and I had to get off the bus to file a report. To top it off, the bus was practically empty and she could have sat in the other seats across from me. I started taking the train after that.)

Getting It Into Their Head(phones)

| Portland, OR, USA | Friendly | August 24, 2016

(I am on the light rail train to work when Passenger #1 gets on playing very loud music on his phone speaker. Obviously, this makes a lot of people very irritated, but none of us speak up until about three stops later when Passenger #2, who is sitting a few seats away from me, approaches the passenger playing his music.)

Passenger #2: “Hi there! I just want to commend you.”

Passenger #1: “What?”

Passenger #2: “I just want to commend you. You’re obviously much more important than the rest of us, but you still use public transportation. That’s very good of you.”

Passenger #1: “What are you talking about?”

Passenger #2: “Oh, maybe I made a mistake. See, I assumed you’re better than the rest of us. That’s why you’re being an a**-hole, right? Instead of using headphones like a decent human being?”

(Passenger #1 told him to f*** off, of course, but a ticket inspector who got on at the next stop made him turn off his music. Passenger #2 was shaking with adrenaline when he returned to his seat and I overheard him telling his friend that he’d always wanted to tell somebody like that off.)

Will Need A Map To Navigate This Conversation

| Portland, OR, USA | Friendly | August 20, 2016

(I recently moved to this city and I get lost frequently. I’ve noticed that many of the public transportation stops have maps. I am going to look at one of those maps and there’s a woman waiting on the bench next to it. Note: I’m male.)

Me: *intending to be polite but not really start a conversation* “Good morning.”

Her: “I don’t know you and I don’t plan on f****** you anytime soon.”

(I don’t know what made her so jaded, but I hope her life got better.)

Arrested For J-Writing

, | CA, USA | Right | August 18, 2016

Me: “All right, sir. If I could have your first and last name for the receipt?”

Customer: “Fred [Last Name].”

Me: “Oh, I don’t know how to spell that. Could you please spell it out for me?”

Customer: “J, E—”

Me: *writes JE*

Customer: “No, ‘J.'”

Me: *looks at receipt*

Customer: “No! It’s a ‘J!'”

Me: “Umm… This is a ‘J,’ sir.”

Customer: “No, you stupid girl. ‘J’ as in green!”

Me: *sighs* “Oh, you meant a ‘G.'” *finishes writing the receipt*

Customer: “You shouldn’t work here if you don’t know the alphabet.”

Me: “Have a nice day.”

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*

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