Humor Magazine

Bus Stop: 24th and Nicollet; Or Turns Out, I Look Pretty Suspicious

By Pearl
Sometimes, nothing happens.  And sometimes, it seems that everything happens at once.  For the next several Fridays, I’m going to be posting on my recent time at a bus stop in Minneapolis.  Having missed one bus by mere minutes – there it goes! – I stood and waited for almost 30 minutes for the next one.
Come stand next to me, won’t you, and we’ll wait together. 
I’d gone to George’s directly after work, part of one of those “I need to see you” aspects of a true friendship; and now, the light about 30 minutes from failing, I am standing on the corner, ready to go home.
I take a good look around. 
This is certainly a savory little area,I think.
A blend of small, home-y restaurants, bars with four-hour Happy Hours, people shouting into cell phones, there are taxis and buses and dog walkers and children. 
It is not until around 6:00 that the demographics begin to change. 
Dressed in an olive-colored pencil skirt, an amethyst shirt, cream fitted jacket and black heels, I do not stand out downtown, but with the traffic beginning to thin on this Tuesday afternoon, I am beginning to stand out at the bus stop in front of the McDonald’s.
A man in a Scarface jacket, pants belted around his knees waddles past me.  He is slender, young, his hair plaited into exuberant braids, a Medusa in the Hood look that not everyone can carry off.  He pulls fries out of what seems to be an endless bag of fries.
I lick my lips.
My visit to George’s had not included dinner. 
I watch his hand dip into the McDonald’s bag.  I watch enviously.
I consider asking for a fry.
I remember that I have a bit of string cheese in my lunch bag.
It’s amazing how often I have string cheese in my lunch bag.
I set my purse down on the bus stop bench, start digging for the cheese.  Out of the corner of my eye, Braid-y backs away from me.
Hmm.  Plastic bag, big Tupperware, little Tupperware, stray dollar bill, the packet of vitamins I had forgotten to take – there it is!
Triumphant, I pull the cheese out of the bag.
I look up to find the young man with the braids staring at me, a cluster of fries in his hand, forgotten.
What had he thought I was digging for?
I grin sheepishly at him, hold the cheese up.  “String cheese,” I say. 
Smiling, the man with the fries shakes his head, wanders to the other end of the bus stop.
There’s some weird people waitin’ for the bus. 

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