I often take the #17 bus home from work. It goes down Nicollet, turns right on 24th at the McDonald’s, and over to Hennepin. I don’t know what kind of SuperSized drinks they serve at the McDonald’s on the corner, but this Tuesday made the third time an Extrememly Drunk Guy got on the bus from that particular spot.
There’s no guesswork here — All three, I’m talking weaving down the aisle, shouting, stinking of gin, etc. The 5:30 in the afternoon kind of drunk.
Last time, a Really Drunk Guy sat down between me and another guy, put his arm around him, and struck up a conversation. I was a little miffed. The object of his affections was more traditionally handsome, I suppose, but I have a lot to offer conversation-wise.
Tuesday, a different Extremely Drunk Guy sort of made himself a spot between two women at the very back of the bus by plopping down in between and immediately saying “You’re pretty,” to one of them. The other one got up and walked down the aisle. The pretty woman said “Thank you.” Then he said that he was tired of “all this gangster shit.” The pretty woman said “I’ve had a long day,” and decided to stand the rest of the way home.
“Mother,” he kind of warbled. “I just killed a man.”
Whoa! Me and the people in the back shifted in our seats nervously and shared wide-eyed glances.
“Put a gun up to his head, pulled the trigger, now he’s dead,” he sang.
Wait a minute . . . was that Queen?
“Cause nothing really matters . . . anyone can see . . . nothing reeeaaaly matters . . . to me.”
Definitely singing. Sort of. Definitely “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Everybody likes “Bohemian Rhapsody.” In the back of the bus, we breathed a collective sigh of relief.
The back row he was sitting in was wide open. A woman newcomer with some shopping bags plopped down beside him and looked him over. He was swaying a little bit. She turned to the guy in front of her:
New Woman: I wondered why nobody was sitting back here!
Guy in front: You’ll find out in a minute.
EDG: I’m a king, I’m a king, I’m a motherfuckin’ king.
If only he had stuck with “Bohemian Rhapsody.” By the time he got to “scaramouche, scaramouche, will you do the fandango” he would have had us all caught up in a giant bus-shaking singalong, Wayne’s World style.