Tiddleywomp Cockletit

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« on: May 08, 2012, 07:40:32 am »
Political? Not on the surface, until you consider that Texas is an oil state and doesn't have commie euro stuff like commuter rails.
Oh yeah, and corporations are running things anyway.

Dok's use of the term "Nashville bus station" has got me thinking. Well, that and the fact that I recently took two bus trips back to back, one last weekend, one the weekend before that.

Remember the old days? The bums and crazies, the wannabe pimps swarming the females the minute they got off the bus ("Hey baby, you like pretty diamond rings?" coming from a guy wearing Goodwill crap), the unidentified sticky shit all over the floor, the guy showing you what looked like a booger he'd been rolling in his fingers all day and trying to sell it to you as Lebanese hash, and the coffee machine that took your last fifty cents, dropped your coffee cup sideways behind a glass door that couldn't be opened until the coffee was finished dispensing, and then gushed coffee that leaked into a hugeass puddle on the floor? We didn't know it then, but that was the Golden Age of Greyhound.

My trip last week: I bought a round trip ticket to San Antonio, 39 miles away. The bus station, being in Seguin which is already FUCKED UP, was at a convenience store/restaurant. It's also five miles outside of town, which is a very Seguin place to put something for people who need to get somewhere and don't have a car handy. I sat on the one bench they have outside and watched for the bus in the usual three places it might pull up, but it came up the back way this time and parked out of sight so I missed it.

When I went in to ask them what happened to my bus, they said I missed it and there wasn't another bus until that night, which was too late to go to the show I wanted to see. I asked them if I could catch a bus to Austin (which is somewhat FUNCTIONAL and not a surreal pile of shit like Seguin) and go to San Antonio from there, and they said yes and there was an Austin bus in 30 minutes. My wasted ticket could only be refunded online (maybe...and even then there's a $15 refund charge, of course) so I bought a ticket to Austin and another one to San Antonio.

San Antonio sucks too, but the show was a blast. I stayed as long afterwards as I could and then a friend took me back to the bus station. (Everybody was going someplace else and anyway, Seguin isn't really a place you're anxious for people to actually SEE). Of course I had to wait until 7:10 for the bus home, but I'm used to that kind of thing. The problem is that they keep it about 50 degrees in there (trying to freeze out the homeless, in spite of the security guys who ask you to show them a ticket and give you the evil eye anyway) and Texas is already scorching so I'm never dressed for it in the spring and summer, so I kept popping in and out. Outside is where the crazies are now so you have to keep moving or they'll try to draw you into a conversation about how if you turn on the radio, the cops have a thing to listen to your thoughts through it.

Finally I was lined up for the bus (you don't miss a bus in San Antonio, they announce it and everybody has to line up and stand there for an hour) when they announced that the bus was delayed for two hours. It seems it was coming from El Paso and they check the buses there with dope dogs, and found something. So instead of just slapping the cuffs on the guy or sending a different bus, they held it up for two hours.

OK, so this weekend I had another show I wanted to make on Saturday. I went online and checked the schedules and THEY'D TOTALLY CHANGED THEM. I always took a 10:30 am bus to Austin and got there about noon, enjoyed hanging out with a friend and/or killing the day wandering around a place I actually LIKE, and then went to whatever it was I wanted to go to. Now they had a bus that got to Austin (theoretically) at 8:30 pm. I was supposed to meet up at 9:00 and my event started at 9:30. If my bus was on time, I could probably grab one of the taxis hanging around the station like buzzards and make it, but the bus is NEVER on time so I took the Friday evening bus.

I didn't miss it. I stood out in the lot in the blazing sun dodging people in 4 wheel drives with Truck Nutz and Jesus wasn't fun, but I saw the cunt pull in the back way and hide where I wouldn't have seen her if I'd been on the bench.

Of course it got there an hour late, which told me I'd made the right decision about going the day before. I didn't call anybody because I didn't want to be all "Look what I did, can you come fix it?" so I rented the cheapest room I could find, $109 with tax, ouch ouch ouch. Then I went to the IHop next door and ate some kind of synthetic "food" that I should probably find a colon hydrotherapist to counteract with a vibrating enema machine, went back to my room, turned the thermostat down to 60 (fuck them, for that kind of money I want the AC so high that I actually get to sleep under something besides the sheet), turned off my phone and slept for ten hours.

Saturday I woke up, showered, and took the Metro bus to hang out on the Drag close to the venue. Everything was exceptionally awesome. Again, I stayed out as long as I could and then got dropped off at the station.

My bus wasn't due until 10:45 am. The guy checking for tickets told me to ask if there was an earlier bus they could switch me to, so I did. He switched me to a bus to San Antonio that was already outside waiting to go.

Of course there was no Seguin bus from San Antonio anymore at 7:10 am, my plan for getting home before dark was to take a bus to Houston and then back to Seguin, but it turned out they didn't have a Houston bus until that night. Again, they changed my ticket and sent me back to Austin to wait for the original bus at 10:45 am. At least I didn't get charged for any of that and it killed some time.

Finally we lined up (ouch, feet) and there was a little entertainment, some guy wouldn't let a crazy menopausal lady cut in line and she kept screaming "BUT I HAVE KIDS!!!!!" For a couple of minutes I thought I might get to see a rodeo. Nothing happened, though.

Went to Houston to wait for the Seguin bus at 2:45 pm. If you've never been to Houston, it's fugly beyond anything on earth. A giant creepy hate-pit with roads like a bowl of spaghetti. I won't go into it right now, there's just TOO MUCH fugly. I will say I left my pocketknife at home, because when I went there last October it turned out to be the only bus station in Texas that has a pilot TSA program and they confiscated my nice little Buck that I've had for fifteen years. If you go to the section where the coffee is, they search you on the way back. No matter how many times you got coffee already.

If you go outside to smoke, the door opens on a little iron CAGE with metal bus benches, so you don't get the street crazies, you just get the fugly people waiting for a bus. The conversation is less than scintillating. Oh well, at least their little bar of phone-charging outlets inside aren't made in such a way that the prongs fall out and you have to stand there and hold the fucker in until your phone charges, the way it is in San Antonio. I plugged my phone in, sat on the floor and whiled away the time doing shitty phone internet and talking with a friend.

Finally my bus came and I rode the 167 miles back to Seguin, arriving at about 6:00 pm. 48 hours to go to a place 50 miles away and hang out for a few hours. In all of this, I did see one attempt at improvement:

When I tried to get coffee out of the vending machine in Austin (their station only sells it that way) the place where the cup is supposed to fall wasn't closed off behind glass, the cup didn't fall sideways and the coffee didn't go all over the floor. Instead, no cup was dispensed and a tiny amount of coffee dribbled down a little plastic grate. And it only cost twice as much as it used to, instead of ten times as much, or whatever the fucking inflation rate is for bus tickets.

I liked it better when the coffee went all over the floor.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2012, 07:48:07 am by Anna Mae Bollocks »
Scantily-Clad Inspector of Gigantic and Unnecessary Cashews, Texas Division