Yesterday was my birthday, and found me back in the great city of Albany (Motto: We got your goverment dysfunction right here). I was going to go to Vegas, but I hear Paris Hilton will be there; she and I had a fling a few years back and I don't want to bump into her and cause a scene. So I thought to myself "where else can I debase myself in new and unusual ways?" and the answer was Albany. Because small, middle-American cities are kinky that way.
In order to get here, I had to spend the day on the bus. You all know of my deep and abiding love of bus transportation. It's a chance for me to get to hobnob with a vast cross-section of America, who all smell vaguely of cheese. There's the douchebag in the Ed Hardy t-shirt with his pregnant girlfriend, bickering the entire way. Oh, and here's the fat businessman who likes to snore. Over there is the chick noisily eating Doritos out of an incredibly loud mylar bag. She was talking to the woman who couldn't stop laughing with this annoying "snort-laugh" (you know the kind that's part snort, part laugh, and is all annoying). I would rather be transported in the hold of a Chinese freighter, because at least then there would be tasty Chinese food.
I would be all for a seating system similar to the airlines. There could be a first class and a coach. All the mouth-breathing pinheads who wear "Free Lindsay" t-shirts could sit in coach. Or as I would call it "isolation". And I could sit in first class. I would pay an extra $20 to sit in the front of the bus with a nice, but flimsy, barricade between me and the denizens of Innsmouth who ride the bus. I actually believe H.P. Lovecraft got the ideas for most of his degenerate, inbred cultists because he rode Greyhound busses all the time.
I'm a reader by nature. I like to read. I refuse to read on the bus. Firstly, because there's no point. The bickering couple and Queen Laughita were too much of a distraction. Secondly, I'm convinced the rest of the bus is just waiting for me to nod off (because I tend to fall asleep when I read), and then eat me. After they sacrifice me to their noisome, rugrose, gibbering Elder God, of course.
Really, the whole experience is oppressive. There's the giant yellow sign at the front of the bus that says "REMAIN SEATED!" The bus driver rattles off a list of rules (no eating, no drinking alcoholic beverages, no loud music playing and no cell phone calls), which everyone on the goddamned bus violates. Don't get me started on the toxic dump passing itself off as a restroom either (and really, guys, stop trying to pee standing up in a moving vehicle. Your aim isn't that good.). In the end, I feel like I'm being taken to prison, not Albany. All that's missing is the cop with a shotgun standing at the front of the bus. And I wouldn't be opposed to them including that feature, quite frankly.
Happily, my time in Albany more than makes up for the hellish experience that is traveling by bus. Now, I just have to go back.