I like mass transit. I’ve used mass transit all over the world. Hell, even stumbling, blind drunk I’ve been able to get around places like Prague and Berlin and Tokyo.
But in a (relatively) small city here in the US?
This is a whole different world.
Maybe I should set the backstory a bit: I wrecked my car. I still don’t know if it’s gonna be totaled or not, so I have no idea yet what is going to happen. But, me being me, I didn’t bother with things like rentals or loaners. Nope, I don’t need such things, I’m tough! I have feet! I have a bike!
Yeah, then my area hit a serious cold snap. I don’t mean, “Crikey, I need a sweatshirt” cold, I mean “Oh fuck, I have frostbite!” cold. I lived in New England…believe me, I know cold. I am not riding my bike in single digit weather. I might be a bit nuts, but that’s just crazy.
I haven’t felt so damned isolated and helpless since I was in high school (when we’re all isolated and helpless).
It is two and a half miles from my house to the brewery. The local bus runs a circuitous route that gets me there…hey, let’s give that a try!
Oh for real mass transit…
The bus is late: okay, it doesn’t matter, all I want to do is write, anyway.
The bus is, err…let’s be charitable and call it “rickety” and “run down”: it’s okay, I’ve had my shots.
The bus passengers are…?: it’s okay, I’m armed…oh wait, I’m not! Shit!!
But…and it’s a big but…I do have this neat little app on my phone! $1.25 for the bus or $7ish for Uber…guess where my future lies? At least until the weather gets warmer…or I get my car back.
In Europe, I am quite happy to be without a car. In America? People say, “Drive on over!” and I have to answer, “Well, err, I can’t.”
I think they would look more kindly on me if I was a plague-ridden psychopath who ate children. Their faces, their voices, strive for sympathy and commiseration but never really get past revulsion and fear.
For the moment, I number among the dangerous and diseased, the great unwashed, the carless.
What’s the number for Hertz again?