There is a certain happiness sighted when your bus comes along. It is of course a small specialized form of happiness and will never be a great thing.

-Richard Brautigan, The Old Bus

Friday, November 16, 2007

Guy who chases co-eds update

It has been nearly two months since we last heard from the guy who chases co-eds. Perhaps an update is in order.

The guy arrived today, as he always does, scanning the seats of the bus. He turns his head this way and that. He looks down at the nearest seats and then looks up to see the rear. I suspect his peripheral vision isn't very good with his glasses. He always holds the stanchions that run from the seat backs to the overhead handrail. He is very meticulous in his habits.

Pickings were good today. Every seat had at least one occupant, and several of those seats were occupied by women.

The guy tried his luck first near the front, plopping down next to a woman with dark brown hair. From my vantage point in the very back corner of the bus, I couldn't hear which lines the guy tried. I could tell he was saying something. And I could tell from the frozen position of the woman's head that he wasn't getting much if any response.

It wasn't long before he got up and started his slow walk toward the rear of the bus, looking this way and that, moving from stanchion to stanchion.

The back of this old-style bus has three benches, two facing each other on the sides and the back bench facing forward. On the side bus bench sat a young woman with blonde hair pulled back in a tight bun. Her expression is best described as scowling. And if anyone missed the point, she also wore a sweatshirt with the word "Moody" on one breast and on the other a picture of a ringing alarm clock and a very moody looking Tweety Bird.

"I know you," said the guy who chases co-eds. He pointed at the scowling woman and repeated, "I know you."

The scowling woman's expression did not change. She did not move. She did not look at the guy. She did not in any way acknowledge that this guy existed. She sat stone, scowling still.

There was a small space of bench next to the woman, and the guy leaned in that direction as if he might try sitting there, but even a guy as slow as this guy can read such perfectly sculpted body language.

The woman was cold stone still.

The guy instead took a seat across from her and folded his arms across his chest. He rode along like that for several minutes, his gaze wandering around the bus.

Eventually, he got up again and returned to the front of the bus. He sat down alone in the first front-facing seat, the one that folds up to make room for wheelchair riders.

I went back to my book, figuring the story was over. Most days the guy sits alone, not bothering anyone, but obviously wishing he could. He gets to his stop and gets off and everyone goes about their business.

But then a little later when the bus stopped I looked up from my book and watched as a young attractive blonde woman took a seat next to the guy. She immediately started up a conversation that included smiles and lots of eye contact.

The classic definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and hoping for a different result. Sometimes even crazy people score.

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