Westbound 545, 7:30 p.m.: Two men are discussing a recent dental appointment.
Guy 1: "She said they were all abscessed. All 18 of those teeth are bad. She could've pulled them all today, and I wouldn't have cared."
Guy 2: "Why didn't she?"
Guy 1: "She wanted to make sure I could pay for it. If you can't pay, they won't do anything."
Guy 2: "It's just as well, though. You would've been walking around with half your grill missing."
Westbound Connector (Microsoft's private commuter bus, which I tested once last week), 9:40 a.m.: Connector employee 1 to Connector employee 2: "In my 20s, I dated these nice guys who were into commitment, and I was the fickle one. Then, at about 29, I decided I wanted to settle down, and I keep getting these bad eggs.
So then I got with my cheater/liar, and now Tim, so I'm like, 'What's next -- a murderer?'"
Eastbound 4, 3:10 p.m.: Two middle-aged men who are apparently acquaintances are making conversation in the back of the bus. One of them takes a drink from a bottle of pop.
Middle-aged man #1: "This tastes just like that orange ice cream we used to have back in the day. You know, with the cream in the middle? [Pause] Want some?"
MAM #2: "No thanks, man."
MAM #1: "Come on, have a taste! I don't have any germs. Got a little cancer, but no germs."
A third man, 10-15 years younger, gets on and joins the conversation. As the bus passes the new City Hall, he gestures toward the building.
Young man: "I heard they have a misdemeanor jail up there.
MAM #1 (shrugging): "Jail's jail."
YM, gesturing toward the county jail: "I'd rather be in a misdemeanor jail than in there. I was in there for three weeks for a DV [domestic violence charge]... My cellie had killed two people. I was like, 'I don't belong in this joint. We were just arguing!'"
Westbound 14, 1:10 p.m.: I'm sitting in the very front of the forward-facing rows, on the driver's side, in the seat nearest the window. At a light somewhere in the International District, the man sitting in front of me (in the closest of the sideways-facing seats) strikes up a conversation. Three sentences in, he asks an odd variation on one of "those questions " ["Can I Ask You Something?" Nov. 30, 2006].
Man: "What nationality are you from?"
Bus Chick: "I'm from here."
Man: "No, but what is your ethnic background?"
BC: "I'm mixed: Black and white."
Man: "Well, you could pass for a lot of things: Lebanese, Egyptian, Mexican... anything with color.' [Pause] People look at you and expect you to speak some languages."
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