The Joy of Commuting – the Bus

Commuting into London every day has really opened my eyes to the behaviour (or lack of!) of seemingly normal everyday folk.

At 7.30am I get a public bus and then at 7.50 I get a train. Of each form of transport those on the bus are by far and away the worst type of commuters I’ve come across.

The bus

The bus is one of those forms of transport where it always seems like a bit too much effort to get it. Not only that but you immediately know what you’re in for on the cold (and mostly rainy) walk to the bus stop – how many of these sound familiar?

  • A greasy hair stamp pressed into the glass window
  • A freezing cold breeze hitting you in the face from either (or both) the open window (irrespective of the weather) or the broken bus door
  • A nice hole picked into your seat – if you’re lucky, accompanied by some still tacky chewing gum
  • A very well drawn and highly detailed cock drawn onto the back of the seat in front of you
  • Total silence with the exception of the occasional screaming child

All of that having just slalomed your way past all of the aisle knees and prams/buggies – whilst the bus is in motion – I’m yet to find a bus driver who waits for everyone to be seated before pulling away!

But, aside from all of that is the weird and highly irritating behaviour of people on buses.

The bus stop – an orderly queue

At the bus stop everything tends to be incredibly orderly. There is a queue which contains both a front of the queue and a back of the queue. People respect that at bus stops. They line up in an orderly fashion and wait their turn to board the bus. How very civilised.

Bus Queue
A nice orderly bus queue, bliss.

On the bus however it’s a different story whereby there are 2 common types of bus wankers (there, I said it).

Bus wanker 1

The first is the guy who will always be sat in the aisle seat with his bag in the seat next to the window. This is a real statement to tell anyone walking down the bus to not even think about trying to sit next to him. It’s typically a no hope situation for you as a commuter.

Why people feel so possessive about seats on buses is beyond me. It’s a public bus, it’s some skanky chair and it’s certainly not something I’d want to possess! That said, bus wanker 1 knows what he likes and it’s certainly not company. You simply accept the dickheadish behaviour of the middle lane hog and move on down the bus to the next protector of the row.

Bus wanker 2

Further down the bus you find a variation of bus wanker 1 – this guy is similar but also quite different. Although bus wanker 2 has possessive bus wanker 1 like tendencies, this guy will sit in the window seat rather than the aisle. He will however leave an empty aisle seat next to him but splay his legs so wide like some kind of show of male prowess that you only have half a seat available to you. So you perch on the edge of the aisle seat as the bus pulls away, trying to act like you’re comfortable with the situation you’re in. For the remainder of your bus ride this guy will refuse to sit up, close his legs or make you any room. What he will do however is tut that you have invaded his territory.

I’d love to say that this is a one off type of situation however having got public buses to school, buses to university and buses to and from work across several UK towns and cities nothing changes. It’s the same everywhere.

Commuting by bus is pretty dire at the best of times. I commute from Milton Keynes and have to get an Arriva bus to the station. Not only does 1 in 5 of the Arriva buses simply not turn up, the other 4 are always between 3 and 15 minutes late. Not only that, I have to deal with 1 or both of the aforementioned bus wankers twice daily on both the outward and return journeys from work.

I’m buying a bike.

One comment

Leave a Reply