I used to write a column called "Commuting Suicide" for YesButNoButYes. For a while, this was fun. But as my body became more conditioned to bus travel, I struggled to find novel complaints. It's been over a year since the last installment.
But none of the slight inconveniences I whined about can compete with yesterday's journey home. I left the office at 5pm and didn't get home until 10:30. Here are excerpts from emails I sent to my wife and various friends from the bus:
"Snow has turned to sleet, I think. I'm actually not sure where we are. There's a WalMart I've never noticed before. We may still be on that road right after the Lincoln Tunnel. It's been 100 minutes."
"After three hours, we're somewhere in Harrison. It's an interactive commuting experience, as the driver is now following a shortcut suggested by a passenger. Other people are chiming in as well, like audience members at a Price Is Right taping."
"Now other passengers are offering advice, walking up from the back. Lots of pointing. It's tough to put 'I-Will-Now-Accept-Your-Navigational-Input' back in the bottle."
"I just remembered that my car is on top of the Park n' Ride lot, five spots away from the roof's shelter. Good times."
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"I'm so glad I didn't drink any sparkling water this afternoon."
"Any chance I put the ice scraper back in my car?"
"Now I think we're lost, though some guy just rang the bell and hopped off. Not sure whether he actually lives near here, or, after three hours and twenty-two minutes, just couldn't take it any longer."
"Ooh, we're back on track. We're on Northfield. I'll call you from the car."
"Correction: We're on Northfield, but the bus is sliding backwards. Also, the bus is filling with smoke."
"We're pulled over, waiting. For what I'm not sure. A lady shouted, 'My lungs are filling up!' Guess I'll get out and walk. It's gotta be about four miles from Seton Hall Prep to the Park & Ride at Turtleback Zoo. Through the snow. Can't wait to hold this over my kids' heads."
[OK, it's only two miles. That part may get left out when this story is passed down. And the ice scraper wasn't in my car. Lucky for me, a bathing suit was. I used that. Worked wonders.]
Thanks for letting me get all that off my chest. Now it's your turn -- share your best (worst) commuting story. The one that sounds the most awful wins a free copy of The Superman Handbook: The Ultimate Guide to Saving the Day.
I could have used that yesterday.