Wait, wait…run that by me again?

April 17, 2007 § 1 Comment

I take the casual carpool to work. It’s great: picks up right outside my apartment; there are always cars there so you’re rarely waiting like you do for the bus; it is relatively environmentally friendly (or at least most driver work in areas that aren’t readily accessible via mass-transit); and it’s free. Can’t argue with free transportation (yet I can’t ride my bike across the Bay Bridge…but that’s another post).

Anyway, in the months that I’ve done the carpool I’ve come across some interesting characters. There’s the woman in the PT Cruiser who loves to talk badly about her husband and extrapolates his apparent shortcomings out to his entire ethnic group. (But she can say that, because she’s from that ethnic group, too! And besides, it’s true!…such an uncomfortable ride.)

Once, just once, there was a stretch limousine waiting — unfortunately I misunderstood the driver & missed my chance for a luxury commute. The car right behind it that I ended up in was driven by a very diminutive, freckled redheaded woman who spoke using the most ghetto-fabulous dialect I’ve ever heard. Totally took me by surprise and I loved it.

There are two older gentlemen who drive hybrids. One once drove me all the way to my office even though it was out of his way, because it was a chilly morning. (My office is kinda out of the way, so it was extra-nice of him to head over there for me.) He said he had been looking for an excuse to visit a coffee shop he liked that was really not very close to my office. The second one is something of an angel. He works about three blocks from my office & he has picked me up a few times; the first time was the day after I had sprained my ankle, so it seemed like nothing short of a miracle that my twenty-minute walk from the regular stop had been shortened to three blocks. The second time was the first day I tried to wear high heels after spraining my ankle, which turned out to be a bad idea but didn’t do any damage because he took me right to where I needed to be.

There are two women who carpool together in a Jeep SUV, and the driver sometimes brings her little froo-froo dog in with her but won’t let the dog come over and say hi to me.

There is the occasional cyclist with no outward identification but still we manage to figure out that the other one rides; I think it’s because the cyclists are just plain more likely to talk to the strangers in their cars.

There was the football-player looking guy stuffed into the little sports car who started talking to me out of nowhere and who I answered quietly before realizing that he had his cyborg earpiece in the ear that was facing away from me…oops…

Today’s guy took the cake, though. He looked like a tough guy and he had a car that wasn’t quite a street racer, but really really wanted to be. He drove with that wonderfully affected “don’t give a shit” slouch. In addition to the crazy swerving maneuvers through three lanes of traffic and the crazy-wide after market rear view mirror, he had a miniature television where his CD player would be. The TV was on and conspicuously playing his collection of music videos by…Celine Dion?

Interesting characters, all right.

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