Mike Buzzelli

Column Mike Buzzelli

Mike Buzzelli is a stand up comedian and published author. He is a theater and arts critic for 'Burgh Vivant, Pittsburgh's online cultural talk magazine, and an active board member of the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, the Carnegie Arts Initiative and the Carnegie Screenwriters. His book, "Below Average Genius" is a collection of essays culled from his weekly humor column here in the Observer-Reporter.

Riding high

Riding high

June 27, 2014

Riding the bus is a lot like having a prostate exam. In both cases, I close my eyes and wait for it to be over. I prefer riding and leaving the driving to someone else. Besides, the bus driver is bolder than I am and cuts in front of people. I secretly like cutting in front of people, especially as a passenger where I am not at the mercy of their ire and/or finger.

I wake up at 6 a.m., get ready for work and look forward to going back to sleep on the seven o’clock bus. At least, I attempt to sleep. Invariably, a loud talker gets on a few stops later. I’m a loud guy, but I’m fairly quiet before nine.

Occasionally, my friend Laura will ride the bus and I’ll catch up with her. We are probably annoying some other like-minded individual who just wants to rest his eyes.

She wasn’t on the bus yesterday. The loud talker was. He was complaining about a coworker. Apparently, his coworker doesn’t do any work. I want one of these jobs where you just have to show up and look pretty. I could do half of that job well. Loud Talker’s coworker also comes in “when he feels like it.” I wish Loud Talker would follow his lazy companion’s lead and go to work later. Then, he wouldn’t be on my bus.

Also on the bus are two Indian people who speak entirely in Hindi. I assume one of them is complaining about a coworker. It’s almost more frustrating to hear them because I don’t know what they’re saying. It could be, “Look at that idiot trying to sleep.”

Actually, it is funny watching other people nap or attempt to nap on the bus. I watch as their heads bob up and down. It’s really fun when we hit a bump and they leap up startled. No, it’s not funny when that old woman hit her head on the handlebar above her seat. OK. Maybe it was a little funny. In the “Oh my God, I’m going to hell for laughing at people” kind of way.

Yesterday on the ride home, a woman sat down next to me and said hello. She said, “How are you doing today?” She didn’t know me. She just wanted to talk to anyone who would listen, and I had the unfortunate luck to have an empty seat become available.

Toward the end of the ride, she said, “Boy. We were stuck in that Parkway traffic like Easy Glue.”

I said, “Crazy.”

She rolled her eyes and said, “That’s right. Krazy Glue. Not Easy Glue.” Then she laughed at her own mistake. She added, “There’s no such thing as Easy Glue, is there?” She continued to laugh. She brought new meaning to the term “riding high.”

I wanted to tell her I didn’t say Krazy, I said crazy. As in, I think she was. My timing, however, gave me some unintended wiggle room.

OK. Maybe I meant Krazy. Either way, I wished someone was listening, because it was hilarious.



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