For We Are All Creatures Of HabitPosted: September 17, 2007
If I’m travelling alone, I sit at the front of the bus, on the top deck. Unless there is nobody else on the bus, in which case it feels a little silly.
Most buses are arranged so that there’s only one seat in front of the stairs, so I sit there and feel marginally safer in the knowledge that, while people could come up behind me, they’d break their neck the next time the bus turns a corner/ starts/ stops suddenly. It’s something I’ve done ever since I was about twelve, when I chose a seat in the middle of a train and got surrounded by boys I didn’t know or like. I also sit in the corner on trains, where I can, strangely enough!
And I read, too, which, when combined with the seating arrangement, seems to radiate a big Fuck Off Now sign above my head. This is a good thing, as most bully-types are scared of it and do indeed Fuck Off Now.
Sadly, there is still one group of people that ignore the blatant Fuck Off signals. Hello, Creepy Guy in the corner, I’m now talking about you. Feel those ears burn!
And, most recently, not only have they been Creepy, they’ve also been Persistant God-Botherers.
So the last one sat down next to me, clutching his bible, and to be honest, I wasn’t sure whether he was more likely to try to save my eternal soul, or lure me into a den of sin and vice. Tough call. Actually, he didn’t seem to know either. Though he attempted to give me his number regardless. It got torn up and thrown away at Waterloo.
I mean, really. How do you give someone the brush-off when you can’t be sure if the correct response is “Ah, I have seen the light. Obviously my poor misguided soul is in need of redemption, and your God is the perfect solution. Goodbye”, “I’m Buddhist, my soul will be reincarnated, Fuck Off”, “Frankly, I don’t give a shit about my soul”…. OR “No, I don’t fancy you/ want to go out with you/ want a boyfriend/ want a girlfriend……”
Somebody in the comment thread over here suggested reading such books as Cunt*, which seemed to scare people away.
It’s tempting, but I have a feeling that they’d then either assume my immortal soul was in even graver danger, or that I was a brazen hussy just dying to jump into their arms/ bed. Hmm.**
The problem is, the only people who dare approach me these days are the nutcases that don’t respond to simple social signals. I doubt they’d respond to a book cover, sadly.
That said, I may start reading Como Agua Para Chocolate (Like Water For Chocolate), and answer them only in Spanish. Now, what’s the Spanish for “Fuck off, you weirdo”…? Tee hee!
*I have actually read this, which is another reason not to bring it with me. And it was pretty good, except for the bits about Goddesses and moon-worshipping and stuff.
** When I was actually reading in public, it seemed to attract men, rather than repel them. I had a whole tube carriage talking to me at one point. This is unheard of, which is why I didn’t mind, but it wasn’t the best thing if you actually wanted to read the damn book. I’d reached the Goddess stuff by then though, so I wasn’t overly bothered!