Rough Start to the Day

4 a.m. Streetcar…

I’m trying to buy a ticket at the dispenser. I hear her before I see her. That voice of despair. “You got a dollar, sir?”

It’s too fucking early for this; so I stop trying to buy the ticket in a dispenser that isn’t taking my change.

I bounce to the back of the empty train and bury my face in a book. I hear her coming.

“Did you call me a bitch?”

“I didn’t say anything to you! I don’t want to listen to you. I don’t want to talk to you.”

“You look familiar. I know your face.”

She’s not as old as she looks. It appears she has one tooth left. She has the look of defeat. I get up and move past her to the front of a streetcar. I soon exit.

I question myself for not having more compassion and acknowledging that this city chews people up…

The next bus is filled with early morning workers. It’s 4:35 a.m. No one looks happy.

Back to my book.

Dennis and

2 thoughts on “Rough Start to the Day

  1. Dennis, what a perfect description of urban commuting. And the REAL question for Tubularsock is always isn’t the “worker-slaves” really worse off than the one tooth woman that is her own boss?

    But Tubularsock too got plenty of reading done on buses and subways. Like a moving library away from home.

    Really enjoy your work.


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