#16 Bus


The #16 Bus stops behind the #2 Bus a good 30 feet behind the bus stop and opens her door to unload/load. Student and I rush to get to the door and board. When I get in, Driver aggressively asks for my ID (which is already out). She then covers the meter so I can’t swipe my pass and tells me to get in. I sit behind Student on the left side of the bus, directly across from the rear exit.

Across the isle from me is Shorty. I’m playing Words With Friends and checking Facebook. I’m not really scoping out my environment, but my earbuds aren't in, so can hear everything. Shorty’s very talkative without making much sense. He turns to the back of the bus and decides that Chuckles is a friend he didn’t recognize before and starts taking about finances. Chuckles laughs it off and tells Shorty he’s not the dude Shorty thinks he is. Shorty doesn’t stop chattering, asking him where he's stopping and why he’s on the bus. Angry (we later learn from Chuckles that Angry had boarded pissed about something and was sitting at the back of the bus fuming) pulls the cord to get off in front of the Commerce Bank on Clayton Blvd. Angry is tall and cut, with sleeve tattoos. As he exits the rear exit, he bumps into Shorty’s leg. Just as Angry has one foot off of the bus, Shorty said something like “Excuse you for running into my leg.” – whatever it was it was a backhanded apology and Angry took it as such. Angry whirls around stepping back into the bus with a “What did you say to me?”. Shorty stands up and repeats it. Angry takes another step back in.

“What did you say to me!? Do you wanna go?”

Shorty steps in and does an open handed push at Angry’s face.

Angry goes to town on Shorty while Shorty presses forward. They both lose their balance and fall off the bus. Angry’s on his back on the street. Shorty's on top, with his feet still hanging on the steps. After a few punches, Shorty eventually flails off the bus onto the street in front of the bus stop.

At this point, Chuckles starts yelling at Driver to close the door and drive! drive!! DRIVE!!! Driver shuts the door and start the bus forward, but then Worry, who is in the front on the right side of the bus, screams at Driver that Shorty leg’s are under the bus. Which is true. From my spot, I can see everything through the closed back door. Driver stops the bus (it maybe moved 6 inches), then with a scowls at Worry she slowly unbuckles and get up to check. By the time she gets to the right side of the bus (it’s not that far, but she seems very put off by Worry) the scuffle has rolled to the sidewalk. Driver starts barking angrily at Worry. Worry tries to explain, but it’s on deaf ears as Driver continues yelling at Worry.

Eventually, Angry and Shorty break apart. Angry takes about ten steps away and then stops waiting for Shorty to act. Both are hurt, but it’s unclear how badly. Shorty eventually limps across Clayton Blvd toward St. Mary's Hospital and just keeps 

Angry comes back to the scene to pick up some ear buds and a billfold from the street. In a few minutes the bystanders will buzz questioning if they were his or Shorty’s.

With Shorty out of the picture, Angry tries to get back on the bus. Driver yells at him through the closed door that that’s not going to happen. He scowls silently at Driver, and then starts walking up Clayton.

The #16 Bus starts off again, everyone’s buzzing. Student turns to me and whispers “It must be hard to go through life so angry.” I nod agreement.

Chuckles is going back and forth on the bus telling everyone what he thought happened, laughing in disbelief even as he exits.
In about 5 minutes it’s as if it never happened.

I pull the cord and exit at 2:38p.