Tales From Olden Days 4

By Shannon

At the time I was living in Russian Hill and every morning would take the 30 to the Caltrain station downtown.

I was seated in the back of the bus, across from a severely pregnant woman accompanied by her younger brother. Her crop top left her swollen midriff exposed, a canvass displaying an array of stretch marks. She carried a cloud of tension with her onto the bus; her disposition was that of dynamite with a lit fuse. She swore and gesticulated so loudly that within no time she had commandeered the apprehensive attention of everyone on the bus. No one else dared speak in the shadow of such a volatile person.

A few stops down Sutter, the bus got very crowded, as usual. An elderly couple moved toward and empty seat in the back, carrying a few shopping bags. People were already standing in the aisles by this point, and there was little room for the couple to maneuver their load. During their journey, one of their shopping bags grazed the foot of the pregnant woman’s brother.

Her response was to kick the bag the old woman was holding, sending the contents spilling, and then to yell several obscenities at the woman and her accursed accoutrement. The old woman’s husband stood up and yelled, in comically broken English, at the pregnant woman for insulting his wife. She returned the yelling with equally tortured diction. Through her yelling it came to light that she was actually on her way to the hospital to have a scheduled ceasarian. The old man was standing behind me, prego was in front of me, and soon enough a screaming match was taking place over my head. Prego began whapping the man with her umbrella -narrowly missing me- and told the man exactly what she would do to him if she only had her knife. This is what I needed- an overly excited violent woman on the verge of going into labor. By this time the bus had pulled over, but the yelling was far from finished. The other passengers filed quietly off the bus, but I was literally trapped in my seat by the woman brandishing her nylon Excalibur. The police finally showed up and forced the woman to shield her weapon. I was asked to give a statement, had to wait for another bus in the rain, and missed my train.

I feel very sorry for the woman’s child. Its mother is a maniacal lunatic.

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