OK, here’s the deal.
The bus stop at which I wait in order to get to work is directly in front of a garden apartment complex. One four-apartment unit has a path that leads directly from it to the bus stop. In one of these units lives Line-Jumping Guy.
Line-Jumping Guy cannot STAND to wait in line. Line-Jumping Guy MUST be at the head of the line. Line-Jumping Guy was obviously traumatized, way back in kindergarten, by the harshness of being “that kid” who was forced to watch in abject misery and impotent rage as the kid in front of him got the last chocolate milk. Line Jumping Guy has apparently taken a vow before God and man never to let this happen again, and here is how I know this to be true:
Line-Jumping Guy’s path leads directly to the bus stop (kiosk and all, built by NJ Transit and maintained by my town- it says so right there on the kiosk). RIGHT TO IT. However, should there be more than three people ahead of** L-JG,** he will- and this is no fabrication- he will walk one block to the corner ahead of the bus stop on the route and he will wait there for the bus, waving it down when it gets close.
In the immortal words of King Juan Carlos of Spain: “Que?”
I look at this guy like one would look at a grown man who runs to beat another grown man to the escalator. I look at this guy like I look at a grown man speedwalking (you know, running, but keeping your arms straight at your sides, maybe moving them a bit, but always with elbows locked, because, you know, you’re walking) to the newsstand when he sees that there’s one copy of the Times left. I mean, even in kindergarten, we knew that this was, although legal, pretty damn petty. Nobody liked that kid then, and I sure don’t like L-JG now.
I like him even less because- and here is the kicker- this is so early in the morning that there are ten people, tops, on a 50-passenger bus before it gets to our stop.
Dude! Line-Jumping Guy! Homey! Chill! You’re goddamn annoying, and your “I got there before you did (heaven help me, I’m chanting that in my head a la kids on a playground)” schtick earns you NO benefit, and the silent derision of your fellow riders. I can see the looks on their faces. They, like me, would be disgusted if they could get over the confusion as to why the fuck you do it.
So, having set the scene, let’s examine this morning. I get to the bus stop. Wait. Wait. Wait some more. No bus. This is unusual. One must be late. A line begins to form behind me, about 5 people long. I’m eating my granola bar, enjoying the melodic strains of RUN-DMC, when my man Line-Jumping Guy emerges from the Line-JumpingCave and surveys the scene five paces in front of him (I cannot stress enough that Mike Powell could jump from** L-JG’s ** porch to the bus stop without thinking twice about it).
Line-Jumping Guy walks to the back of the line. I can feel the conflict within him. Not even until the end of “Kings of Rock” does he stand for being in the back of the line. Off treks our intrepid Line-Jumping Guy for the greener pastures of the Bizarro Bus Stop, where he stands resolutely, awaiting his bus and the promise of a seat on what is sure to be a crowded bus.
Now, today, I’m a little more pissed than confused with regard to the line-jumping subject of my little rant. Because, with the buses late, or bunched together, or running less frequently, Line-Jumping Guy’s jackassery might just accomplish something. Every kid in high school has a friend “who steals,” and you don’t want to be a bad kid (because it’s just dick), but you still feel a little funny because he has all these new baseball cards and you don’t. So I’ve got a bit of animus in my heart for Line-Jumping Guy, because his assholishness is going to score him big today.
It is about at the point when I’m wondering if I can get all my fellow riders to swear in court that they saw nothing like the horrendous beathing the DA alleges occurred when I see two buses coming toward us. L-JG is in his glory. He’s gonna be fir-irst… he’s gonna be fir-irst (God, there’s the chanting again), and, in accordance with L-JG SOP, the lead bus stops for him, and the second bus passes and comes to the real bus stop. It is as I am getting on my bus (looking throught he windows at the six total people on my empty bus), that I notice the lead bus passing us by.
In bright yellow letters on the front of the bus are the sweetest words a man can see this sunny morning:
“STANDING ROOM ONLY.”
And there is our man Line-Jumping Guy, mashed in with the other standees, watching as a tumbleweed blows down the deserted aisle of the bus he cheater-cheater-booger-eatered to avoid waiting in line to board.
And we, the waiters, the patient, the godly and law abiding, each get our own seat thanks to the unwitting largesse of Line-Jumping Guy, whose nincompoopery became like unto a metaphorical Secret Service, eating the bullet of standing-room-only in service of the President of our comfort.
Fuck you sideways through the urethra with one of those sizzling-hot skillets from Chili’s, Line-Jumping Guy.
Karma’s a motherfucker, ain’t it?