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MTA Andre, Says, ‘Take Care out There’
11:22-48, #36 Bus from Towson to Essex


MTA Andre, Says, ‘Take Care out There’

11:22-48, #36 Bus from Towson to Essex

The driver was startled to see me at the lonely bus stop, but pulled over in time.

When I boarded I said, “Thank you,” to the young fellow with light skin and a slight beard, looking like Lionel Ritchie as postmodern hipster husband and he covered the money slot with his hand and said, “Don’t worry about it, sir.”

I thought maybe he did this out of guilt for me having to step out into the street to get his attention, but the nearly empty bus told me the probable reason, he’s just not pulling over much.

There are two brothers in their early 20s discussing white boxing champions in worshipful tones, like white men in the1970s bemoaning the lack of quality white boxers.

The security guard is asleep.

The big black girl looks nervous, darting her eyes this way and that, indicating that she is getting off soon.

At Overlea Station, the driver pulls over and before the doors open says, “Look y’all, take care out there, en that means no smart phones and no head phones. This shit is getting’ blatant out here en ya’ll need to take care. Bless ya’ll en take care.”

The two young men and the woman then made off up the sidewalk like survivors in a zombie apocalypse movie.

A man his age, in his early 30s boarded and he waved the fee and they clasp hands, the driver explaining, “Ain’t no charge tonight. I feel guilty for droppin’ ya’ll off—shits gettin’ blatant brutha. I dropped a lady off here two hours ago en before I pull off she’s back on the bus screamin’ that she been robbed. I didn’t even call the MTA poleese—called the real poleese.”

The security guard slept on—a dark-skinned 50-year-old—and the brother sat down behind me and continued the conversation with the driver as a tall [we’re talking 6’ 4”] pretty amazon with a stupendous buttocks sat down and navigated her smart phone. The conversation evolved around “the stick-up boys back in da day,” when you had to have “your head on a swivel en watch yo shit or you got jacked—like that!”

No other person boarded for the next 7 winding miles. The conversation about how helpless people are today against mugging because of smart phones and headsets was only interrupted when the driver kept the bus idling so we could admire the Amazonian posterior as it swished off into the deeper darkness and the guy behind me said, “Hell, if she didn’t want us to look she wouldn’t be wearing skin tights—dat a big bitch dough!”

The conversation about rampant crime and police being overwhelmed continued until I got off at my stop and told the driver that I had been set upon a couple times at the stop he picked me up at and a few times here, over the past year.

He wished me a safe and blessed night and then made sure to tell the two remaining men my scouting report as he watched me walk off into the weird night, a night that soon got much weirder—but that is another tale.

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