Monday, June 18, 2007

GETTING THERE in Baltimore

I wanted to board the #8 proceeding  south at 5:15 p.m. The first bus passes me right by even though I can clearly see there are plenty of seats.  There is a good chance the driver did not pick me up because I am "minority white."  10 minutes later another bus comes by and the driver does stop. Riders are standing in a probited area in front of the yellow line, even though there are seats available! 

  Not only is it a federal offense,to ride in front of the yellow line,  but it's very common and very dangerous. I refuse to ride in front of the yellow line. I am forced to push my way past people so I can get past the yellow line. I take the risk of infuriating people, but I know darn well there is room back there, but that people usually refuse to move back, and the driver doesn't enforce it.

After about 8 blocks I find a seat. Remarkably, a black and a white woman are talking with one another and they aren't fighting with each other. I quickly psychoanalyze why this must be. Perhaps because it's rush hour? More working people, more open to behaving civilly. It's the usual thing, complaining about how horrid our system is assuming that the grqass is greener on the other side/in other cities. 

As they complained, I said: "Well, our lives are passing us by, if we want a better life we are going to have to leave Baltimore!"

lady a-"I can't leave, my family is here and I'm sick."

me-"I'm also in the category of "can't" leave because "situation bad", but as long as I'm alive, I'm going to work like hell for a better life and that means getting out of here."

She buries her head in her book.

Some believe that a true activist sticks around and tries to make a problem better. But I know that Baltimore isn't going to be a liveable place in my lifetime, and I desperately need something something better. It's just not worth fighting for a better life here, the odds of it happening are just too slim.

No comments: