Monday, December 04, 2006

The CSs and the Cs

There are two types of people that really annoy me. I don’t know whether they exist anywhere else in the word, but they are particularly abundant in the proximity of any form of Belgrade’s public transportation. Let’s call them the Conversation-Starters and the Commentators. They are closely related and quite similar. They can be both male and female, and 40-something and up.

The first, less aggressive “species” is characterized by a desperate desire to communicate with anyone about anything as soon as they are left idle for more than 1 minute in any situation involving waiting for or driving on a bus/tram/trolley. Usually they let out a recognizable sigh, deep exhale or pant, before making a general comment about oh, well anything, really, in the hope of drawing some unsuspecting victim into a pointless conversation. Fortunately it usually happens to be another conversation-starter, so the worst thing that can happen to the rest of us is to be bored senseless.

The second has a similar tactic but with the aim of spreading negative energy and/or picking a fight. They hope that a comment will force an annoyed fellow passenger to reply which could start an argument, which helps their commute just fly by. Their field of interest is quite narrow and usually revolves around more liberal factions in politics and young people in general.

I am no stranger to getting up for people on public transportation. But, I draw the line on old people, people with disabilities, pregnant women and people with small children. I have no intention of getting up for strapping forty-five-year-old women who look like they could pluck my arm out with two fingers. Well, maybe if they ask me nicely. On the trolley on Friday, this burly woman started her soliloquy about how “children” have no manners, do nothing, and spend all day running around in school or playing games on their computers and then do not have the decency to get up on the bus. Lady, maybe this “child” had a tough week at work, so just go away, but thank you for noticing my boyish good looks.

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