THE VOICEBOX Vol. 45 Issue 16

Look for the Voicebox on Tuesday afternoons in the Birch cafeteria, to anonymously “voice” your “opinion” on any “topic.” Introverted alternatives include emailing your opinion to

“Why do people need to listen to loud bass music on the bus? It’s so annoying! How loud does it have to be? Can’t you hear it WITHOUT it being super loud? Ugh. So annoying. I’m trying to read Sartre, for Christ's sake.”

Every day I try and tell myself I’m not going to bitch about the regular Vancouver hang-ups: rain, bitchy people, transit problems. I tell myself I’m going to have a good experience, and generally it’s fine. Aside from the odd BMW splashing gravel-infused rain in my face, or someone screaming at me at work for not knowing where their sister-in-law’s office is, it’s usually an okay time.

But then I get on a bus, and the driver is really nice to me even though I’m the idiot fumbling for my bus pass holding up the line. Everyone behind me starts breathing down my neck, despite the fact that the bus came three minutes early, and it’s a beautiful day outside. I start getting paranoid, waiting for something terrible to happen. Like the day I went to see Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (I know.) and a pigeon shit on my new haircut right on my way into the theatre (yep). Or like the time I told this guy in the washroom that he had done up his pants and left a massive string of toilet paper hanging out of the back of his pants that made him look like a business-class dragon. He was choked!

People are not courteous in general, and when you are nice to them, they’re so taken aback that they respond in rude ways. Well, today, everything seemed to be quite great. The bus driver let me on despite my usual fumbling for my pass (classic “I don’t have a bus pass” move – but really I do!), and he said, “Just go ahead.” And then … my dream man got on the bus.

He looked like a cross between a wizard and a '90s grunge kid. Pretty into it. So I’m acting all “coy” (I don’t even like that word, but apparently it’s effective), and he looks at me, and because of this big-ass cold-sore on my face, he sneers (he also may have been straight, didn’t like my uncombed hair, or mistaken my post-sickness shivers for something else, etc.), and then gets off at the next stop walking out of my life forever. Well, you know what? He didn’t even say “Thank you” to the bus driver, and to me, that’s a complete dealbreaker. Hmph.

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