Killing myself slowly, day after day
Volume I: "Lost"
"Does anybody know what street we're on?"
The bus driver, sounding defeated, had pulled off the road. I'm not sure how long she'd circled aimlessly before admitting she was lost. But her call for navigational assistance was the last thing I wanted to hear at 10:54 PM last night. If there were 40 passengers on the bus, 39 of us responded with exaggerated groans.
The one holdout was a Junior Magellan, far too white and preppy to know anything about the Newark streets on which we waited. "The moon is on the wrong side of the bus," he explained, finger waving, arms flailing. 39 more groans.
Ten minutes later, we were back in the same spot where Magellan started calling the shots. He returned to his seat, mumbling. "It's not my fault, it's the moon."
Somebody shoot me, I think to myself. As I notice the seedy characters outside the bus, I realize somebody might.
Amid the quiet chaos, the scolding words of an angry dispatcher seep out the CB radio and echo throughout the bus. He wants to know how the hell she got lost. She wants to know how the hell he found out.
"There are no cell phones allowed on this bus!" she screams at us, clearly losing whatever grip she had on the situation. Apparently, one of the 39 angry commuters called the "How Am I Driving?" 800 number listed, coincidentally, right beside the "No Cell Phones" warning. I don't know what our mole said, but I'm guessing the gist of it was "Not well."
With instructions barked from the command center, we find a highway and head towards home. I'm fairly certain a good number of stops were skipped. Not sure what happened to those folks. They may still be on the bus.
Finally, 67 minutes after leaving Port Authority -- a trip that once only took 24 minutes -- I request my stop and wrap up today's commuting adventure. All in a ride home after a day's work.