Thursday, December 14, 2006


Just to let you know, I am using this blog right now as a distraction from current events.

I am sorry to say, my father is in the critical care unit at the hospital. I am waiting for my little sister to get here so we can go up and visit with him again. I don't think he even knows when we are there. It is not pleasant. I am just hoping he's made some progress since seeing him yesterday.

You always have to look for the bright side...It helps you hold on to your sanity. The bright side is...

My lil' sis' is due to have her first child any day (minute?) now. WOO HOOOOO!!!!

I know I usually keep this "Picking Up Strangers" related, but thought I'd say "thank you" for letting me use this...just this one time...As a place to vent. I would also like to mention that my job has been fantastic in dealing with my fathers' unfortunate situation. They immediately covered the rest of my work yesterday so I could drive the 2 hours to the hospital when I found out his situation had worsened. It is nice to be able to deal with this situation without worrying about my job. I hope they know how much I appreciate their support.

I don't want to offend anyone, but to anyone out there who believes in a higher power...I would appreciate if you could take a moment and say a prayer for my dad. We can use all the help we can get!

Thanks again for your prayers and for allowing me to vent a little....I'll try not to do it again! Hopefully, I'll be back picking up strangers soon.


Okay, I realize not everyone is lucky enough to have a mother like mine. She taught me to have manners and respect for your elders...And if you run with a pencil you can fall and poke your eye out with it. I am constantly amazed at the lack of manners and respect people show on the bus.

Just yesterday there was a lady sitting in the peanut seat (for those of you new to this site, that is the side facing seat right next to the front door of the bus). She seemed to be coming down with a cold or something and would cough occasionally. Fine...But PLEASE COVER YOUR MOUTH!! I would glare at her every time she did it hoping she'd get the clue, but she never did. I have told people to please cover their mouths. One lady that comes to mind sounded like she was about to hack up a lung and she kept coughing continuously. Finally, I asked her to please cover her mouth because I couldn't afford to be getting sick. She smiled and complied.

Another thing that drives me nuts is young people who don't give their seats to the elderly and/or handicapped. That is the ultimate in selfishness. Recently, I had an old man get on who used a cane and it looked painful for him to take each step. He refused my offer to put the lift out for him. He smiled and said "Oh no...Not until I really NEED it!" He was adorable. He got on the bus and paid his fare. I waited as he turned to find a seat. Most of the front seats were taken by younger people and they sat and looked at him as he stood there and looked around. I looked one young man in the eye and said "Would someone please give this gentleman a seat?" He looked at me kind of pissy and moved. VERY nicely, I said "thank you" and the old man sat down.

Where are peoples' manners????

Sunday, December 03, 2006


The 21 route is such an interesting route. The characters you pick up can be so....Unique.

It was the first of the month so I expected a lot of activity. All the people that get welfare checks are out on the first day they get it spending it all. The 21 goes down a main street in south Minneapolis so there are grocery stores, retail stores and stores selling just about anything you could think of buying. There are also a lot of bars...But that's another story.

I was having a pretty mellow day as first-of-the-month-on-lake-street goes. Then this guy gets on. He looked like a reject from a rap video...Yes, even THEY didn't wanna claim him! He had layers of clothes on that were about double the size he actually needed. He had a bandana draped over his head and then a cap pulled over it smashing the bandana down so it half covered his eyes. If I remember right, he even had the gross silver teeth that nearly turn my stomach. Who'd wanna lay a kiss on THAT??!!??

Anyway, he got on my bus waving a one dollar bill and said that was all he had to pay the fare. I told him the fare was $1.50. He started to put the $1 bill in the slot and I told him I'd give him a one way ride. He said "But I need to get to St. Paul and I need a transfer!" I said "You don't think a trip to St. Paul itself is worth a buck and a half??" "Yeah, but man, this is all I got for the fare and I need a transfer." Then I really LOOKED at him. I told him what I saw. "Dude, you have a dollar in that hand, a dollar sticking out of your mouth and a $20 bill in your other hand...You need to pay the whole fare or get off the bus." I hadn't really looked at him up until that point and it's true...He was actually CHEWING on a dollar that he had rolled up like a cigarette and had about half of it sticking out of his mouth. Now THAT is disgusting!! Do you know how many germs are on paper money?? Maybe that explains why the guy looked like he did. The dollar germs were eating out his brain cells...I don't think there were many left.

The Money Man told me he needed that one dollar to chew on. When he saw the "that's not gonna cut it" look I was giving him, He addressed the rest of the passengers "Does anyone have 50 cents?" Some guy offered him change for a dollar (I'm guessing he wanted the one in his HAND) But Money Man wanted someone to just GIVE him 50 cents. I told him that would be panhandling and that was illegal on the bus. He needed to take the guy up on the offer for change for a dollar or get off the bus. As usual, some idiot came up and put the 50 cents in and Money Man finally put the dry dollar in the farebox. I gave him the transfer and told him never to do that again. I told him to get on holding all of that money and expect someone else to pay his way was just wrong. Secretly, I realized that it was probably his entire life savings that he had left from his Uncle Sam check from earlier in the day, but someone else's poor budgeting issues are not my problem. That doesn't give them the right to have someone else dip into THEIR budget for him.

Money Man sat in the back of the bus...Surprise, surprise....That seems to be where most trouble gravitates to. He stayed annoying the entire trip to St. Paul. Talking out loud to no one, making rhymes that really wouldn't rhyme if you spelled or spoke them correctly. I was just waiting for him to cuss to give me a reason to boot him off the bus. I was quite shocked that he didn't give me that chance. Maybe he wasn't as dumb as he looked.
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