Welcome to the Short Bus: No Jerks Allowed

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about people, and how they think, and what they think about others.

I’ve also been thinking about the short bus.

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been reminded that being told you “ride the short bus” is an insult.  It means you are stupid or crazy.  But my daughter rides the short bus, and my sister always rode the short bus, and neither one of them is stupid or crazy.

So I started thinking, as I was standing outside and waiting on the aforementioned short bus with my daughter, that riding that diminutive mode of transportation is awesome.  Way more awesome than, say, riding a regular bus.  As proof, I have compiled a highly scientific and accurate list of reasons why the short bus is the coolest bus in the fleet.

  • The short bus has adult supervision.  My elementary age daughter is being watched over by qualified adults, not high school kids with piercings and dirty mouths.
  • My daughter wears an actual seat belt.  If the regular bus has an accident, your kid is going to be bouncing around like a pea in a can.  Sorry!
  • In general, the short bus drivers are kinder, more patient, and far more accommodating than regular bus drivers.  Sorry again!
  • Sure, the kids on the short bus have problems, but I’ve met the regular ed kids on the regular bus.  I think you’d better be more worried than me!
  • Yeah, some of them might lick the windows.  At least they aren’t making out with each other and “experimenting!”
  • Lots of them still color with crayons.  But they aren’t smoking cigarettes. Or drinking.  Good luck!
  • Most of the kids are dressed pretty conservatively, but I’d take that over the “gangsta” look, male skinny jeans, or the little girls who look like they got their clothing out of the discount bin at Hal’s House of Hookers.
  • The kids on the short bus have lots of issues, but my daughter will never tell me she hates me, hit me, roll her eyes at me, or call me a bitch.
  • Also, I don’t ever have to worry about my daughter coming home with a guy who looks like he just escaped from work release, telling me they are in LOVE and they are going to have a BABY!
  • Likewise, I don’t have to worry about her becoming the most “popular” girl in school, if you get my meaning.
  • I ALSO don’t have to worry about naked pictures of my daughter popping up on the Internet because of “sexting.”
  • My daughter and her peers on the short bus don’t judge people.  They don’t make fun of others because they are different, or use them as the butt of a joke.  They aren’t racists, bigots, or just general assholes.  They aren’t bullies.  In short (get it?), they aren’t jerks.

See, riding the short bus isn’t so bad.  It doesn’t make you stupid, or crazy.  You won’t catch a disease from riding it.  In fact, I’d take the short bus any day.  I’d climb on, and sit in the back, and as we passed the regular bus, I’d hold up a sign:

 

SEE YOU LATER, LOSERS!

middle-finger-retro

 

 

 

 


 

Two-Wheeled Menace

I have a prejudice against motorcycles.

Normally I consider myself an open-minded person, but somehow, I have developed a true, burning dislike for two-wheeled vehicles.

The other day, I was on my way home and was passing another car.  A motorcycle came up behind me, and before I could get all the way around the vehicle I was passing, he swung out and passed me on the shoulder of the road.  He then took off down the road at some unknown speed.  It was sort of like when the Enterprise used to take off at warp speed.

My son summed up a cleaner version of my thoughts: “What a jerk!”

Now, I’m not one to generalize (yeah, right) but it seems as though the motorcycle-riding population does seem to have more than the normal amount of jerks.  Don’t start–I know there are some fine, safe-driving motorcycle people out there.  They obey traffic laws and are outstanding drivers.  I’ve never seen them, but I’m sure they are out there.  You know like baby pigeons, or Bigfoot.

Anyway, back to the jerks.

The whole Harley Davidson culture has never interested me much.  That’s not really my personality.  I mean, I can certainly frown enough to fit in, but leather chaps and fringes just aren’t my thing.  Also, the jerk pipes get on my nerves.

Oh, you know what jerk pipes are.  Any vehicle can have them, but they are almost ubiquitous on Harleys.  These are the really, really loud exhaust pipes that make your windows rattle and your ears bleed.  Around here, guys like to put them on their trucks too.  They roar past at all hours of the day and night.  I don’t understand jerk pipes.  What is their purpose?  It seems as though they are little more than a plea for attention, sort of an ear-splitting cry of “look at me! Look at me!”

I guess the bottom line is that I am just not cool enough to get it.

Also, if I’m going to be honest, I’m a little afraid of motorcycles.

I trust them the way you might trust your neighbor’s aggressive dog that has bitten a lot of people, but has never actually bitten you.  Also, I regard with deep suspicion anything that has to defy all the known laws of physics just to move.  This also applies to snakes, airplanes, and Cher.

If a psychologist were to interview me to investigate the deep-rooted cause of my prejudice, I think he could trace it all back to Bristol, Tennessee many years ago.  My husband and I were headed to a NASCAR race.  The traffic was backed up literally for miles.  It was hot and we had been sitting for a long, long time.  Then, out of nowhere, a group of motorcycles drove by on the shoulder of the road, passing everyone else and getting ahead of all of the traffic!!!!  Cheaters!

Then, to go back even further, when I was just a kid, there used to be a an unmanned toll booth on the entrance ramp of the Interstate.  You had to drop a quarter in a little bucket-thing.  There was a hose-like thing laying across the road that counted the cars, so if you drove over it and didn’t pay, a little alarm went off.  Well, guess what?  As we pulled up one day to toss in the quarter, a motorcycle zoomed by on the shoulder of the road (of course) and bypassed the counting hose and thereby the toll booth.  Cheater!

Like I said before, I’m sure there are good motorcyclists out there, who ride for fun and pleasure, who drive safely, carefully, and defensively.

On the shoulder of the road.

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