No habla español on the 38-Geary

38 Geary Muni bus
Photo by frankfarm

Ramona reports from the 38-Geary …

Odd people you run into on Muni —

A guy on the 38 headed toward the VA was sitting near the front, playing cards by himself, but talking constantly and trying to engage everyone else in his banter (“Oh, I think I’m gonna win! Do you think I should play an ace? I don’t know… you know how it went the last time… I used to have a dog!”)… He would laugh, then be serious, then talk loudly, then quietly — all the while trying to catch someone’s (anyone’s!) eye.

When first getting on the bus, people would smile at him and nod, but then realize he was trying to bring them into his non-stop, illogical, stream-of-consciousness conversation. So they would look away quickly and suddenly get very interested in texting, or what was going on out on the street, or looking for something in their bags. Still, he seemed harmless, though a little unpredictable and overly intrusive.

Near the end of the route, he put his cards away and turned his attention to a man sitting at the other end of the bench who, like everyone else, was trying his best not to get involved in the free-wheeling (if one-sided) conversation.

“So,” he said to the man, “are you one of the resident… Chinese?”

When the man continued to ignore him, he asked, “What, no habla español?!”

(Still no response.)

A couple of minutes later he said to no one in particular, “You know, on Judgment Day, God is going to call your name in Spanish, and all you’ll have to say is, ‘No habla español!'”

Laughing and apparently feeling pleased with his own wit, he exited the bus.

Uh, here’s hoping this man is completely wrong about the end of times.

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