Mundane bus queue antics…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s dictionary words are: tripudium, tripos, triskele, triphone, tritical, and bombazine. Please have these words looked up and placed in suitable sentences ready for Professor Mouldie first thing after breakfast tomorrow morning. The professor will conduct the lesson speaking via a glove puppet made from an old grey woollen sock – you must keep your eyes on the sock, and you must not look at the professor’s lips.

The bus had just crawled into its bay in the Interchange. It was straight from the bus park and empty of passengers. It opened its doors and the queue of about a dozen people started to shuffle forward towards it. I was about to join on the end of the queue when a chap suddenly appeared from the right and looked as if he was about to join the queue too.
He was a broad and tall chap in, I would guess, his late twenties or early thirties.
He sported a bushy ginger beard, round glasses, a cream baseball cap, on backwards of course (A week or two ago I saw an amusing video clip of a chap wearing a backwards baseball cap in a crowd watching a tennis match; he sat there with his hand up to his forehead to keep the sun out of his eyes. The caption below said something to the effect – Turn your hat around, you dumb-ass!), he was also wearing a black t-shirt with a bright spiky emblem on it, lemon coloured training shoes and scruffy grey jogging pants.
He stopped, as if in the queue, but also not in the queue, about two feet to the right of it. I have seen people do this before. Are they being deliberately dithery? This social behaviour is a bit odd isn’t it? You don’t know if they are in the queue or not. In my experience it is usually men who do is rather than women; is this a macho thing? Perhaps for some reason they don’t have their car that day and are obliged to travel on public transport with us, the non-car-owning riff-raff; they would perhaps feel embarrassed standing there waiting in line with the ordinary folk. Queuing for something is quite a leveller isn’t it dear reader?
Anyway, people began boarding the bus and we all edged forward a little – he was still hovering slightly in front of, and to the right of me though, I didn’t know whether he would move towards the bus with the rest of us or not.
Suddenly there was action. He looked all around for a moment, and then in a flash, he dashed off whence he came. I thought that he had decided to choose a different bus, but no, he had spotted a discarded sweet that someone had left on a nearby seat a few feet away. He snatched it up and returned to his position (sort of) in the queue.
By now more people had joined the line behind me, which made our chap’s position in the scheme of things look even more odd. He carefully unwrapped the rescued sweet, put it in his mouth, formed the cellophane wrapper into a rough sphere and in a nonchalant manner flicked it into the air with a forefinger.
On boarding the bus I spotted him sitting on the upper deck in the centre of a double seat with his crossed legs sticking out into the aisle; he was still masticating and sucking his toffee open-mouthed as he rapidly thumbed away at his phone. I went and sat a few seats behind him so that I could continue to observe.
Gosh, and sometime I worry that I might be a bit odd…


About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in Dulltown, existentialism, Hull.UK., humour, information, observations, people, seeing, serendipity, surrealism, words and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Mundane bus queue antics…

  1. Hahaha! I love this. People watching is a favourite hobby of mine too. And the queue thing isn’t always for guys, oh no. Women do it it to…..this queue hovering. Mostly while waiting to be served in Marks and Spencers, they hover between checkouts waiting to pounce in between unsuspecting shoppers, claiming their space as if they had always been there. Reminded me of this video 🙂

  2. Dana Doran says:

    Just so you do not go on with your life thinking that your readers do not hang on every word…..did this waffling rider rush to the front when the bus arrived? Give you a hip nudge and force his way in front of you? Slide in behind you? hahahaha It happens here….traveling alone, boarding group 4 or D or whatever, I observed two at once…both seemed to be slightly behind me…..yet as the line cleared and I was about to step forward in line….(which defies analysis……seats are assigned).

    • Dave Whatt says:

      No, he didn’t rush to the front, or push in, he maintained his disdain for the convention of queuing by seeming to be not involved in the process at all, leaving a big gap in front of him and pausing regularly as if about to leave and go elsewhere – until he finally boarded the bus.
      I always get the feeling that people in the US are a lot more competitive than we are here – but we are catching up!

      • Dana Doran says:

        Many years ago I went to Hong Kong (circa 1980)….we missed our first ferry from Kowloon to Hong Kong (island) because we thought we were standing in queue, but when the ferry arrived everyone just pushed to the front! We waited because it looked full….
        I hope you never catch up….there’s something delightful about imagining there is a place in the world with order and decorum. It’s certainly not the US.

      • Dave Whatt says:

        Yes, it is quite shocking when you are away from home and you discover that the conventions of politeness that you assumed were universal, are just absent.

  3. David Manley says:

    It seems so appropriate that our acutest (? is there such a word) observer of social mores is situate in the City of Culture UK!

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