Ten People You Meet on the Metrobus

Commuting is a fun and practical way to get around the city. In the city of St. John’s, there is only one option for commuters — the Metrobus Transit. With up to twenty-six various routes, the Metrobus services practically all major centers, sites, and outposts of the city.

I have been using the Metrobus ever since I moved to St. John’s. From all the hours I’ve clocked sitting down at one of their seats or standing up at their bus stop, phone in hand, asking the customer service agent if the bus would be late or if I missed it, I have noticed a lot of very distinct personalities converging in this transport system.

Here are ten of them:
1) STUDENTS OF SOCRATES or the PHILOSOPHERS

Who are they?

They are those who have found the best medium for meditation is staring blankly out the window of a moving vehicle. After a hard day of barely making enough money for rent, they channel their inner philosopher and contemplate about the existential crisis of life and love as the minutes toll by.
How to spot them?

They prefer window seats. Some of them have earphones plugged into their ears, but their music players are actually turned off. It’s put on to ward away people who could interrupt their musings. Every now and then, especially when they’re deep in thought, they can miss their designated stop.
2) ANTSY-PANTSIES

Who are they?

They are those who cannot stand the idea of sitting perfectly still for more than three minutes in a row. Always in a rush, routes that can take more than thirty minutes are torture for them. Their time is important — or at least to be wasted on their own conditions.

How to spot them?

They check their watch literally every two minutes. They tap their foot incessantly, as if wanting to go to the driver and ask if they’re there yet. They open a book to a random chapter and close it after one second. They scroll through their tablets or smartphones, taking advantage of the free WiFi. They also have earphones plugged into their ears, but they constantly change the song.

3) CAMPAIGNING CANDIDATES

 

Who are they?

They are those who, by wanting desperately to be liked by strangers, come off as politicians during the height of election season. They actually do enjoy the long rides and sometimes even chart the longest possible route to get from one place to another. They probably even have the birthday of every bus driver in their calendar.

How to spot them?

They sit beside you and want to know the color of your underwear. They have a hard time picking up on signals of annoyance. Students of Socrates despise them, Antsy-Pantsies can tolerate them for a few minutes before moving on.

4) CONCERT QUEEN

Who are they?

They are those who through some delusion believe they are god’s gift to the music industry. They have the most expensive earphones on the market plugged into their iPods (yes, they actually use iPods and not their smartphones) as they sing along loudly to the latest hits by Adele or Rihanna. Most of them are out of tune.

How to spot them?

You don’t. You hear them. All the way from the back of the bus which they appropriate as their stage. Beware: Do NOT ask them to lower it down. They will start singing Britney.

5) KNOWLEDGE SEEKERS

Who are they?

Typically young bright-eyed people wanting to delay the inevitable drums of life by attending university. Stuck at the middle point, no longer a child, but not yet quite a grown-up, most of them do not have yet the financial capacity to afford their own vehicles.

How to spot them?

They typically travel in packs and get on or off at MUN or CONA. They bring big backs and thick books (most of which remains unopened during the whole trip). They talk a lot among themselves, seventeen and invincible, mostly complaining about college life, exams, and paperwork (you know, the hard stuff). Campaigning Candidates don’t talk to them as they normally dislike people outside their clique.

6) NEWFIE NEWBIES

Who are they?

Foreigners and immigrants from different provinces in Canada or even different countries, trying to follow the Western dream. Having to uproot their lives, they are starting fresh, making new friends, starting new jobs, and building credit. Majority of them need at least a couple of years before they get a car. Some of them do use the bus to familiarize themselves to the city.

How to spot them?

They look different from you. They also normally wear thicker coats even during the autumn and spring seasons. They love Campaigning Candidates as they get to meet newer people.

7) ZZZOMBIES

Who are they?

They are those who work flexible shifts, one-day working late shifts, the next, working the earliest one. They are those who have partied a little late the night before or have stayed up watching movies a couple of hours later than intended. They are those who have worked sixteen straight hours before getting home.

How to spot them?

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. They are out and about mostly at the earliest buses or at the latest ones. Just like Students of Socrates, they sometimes can miss their intended destinations. They think Concert Queens are the spawns of satan.

8) MILEY AND ROBIN’S

Who are they?

They are that couple who just can’t keep their hands, lips, and god-knows-what-else from each other. They can make out torridly, call each other sweet nicknames, and generally flaunt their relationship to a group who doesn’t really care.

How to spot them?

They normally sit at the very back of the bus for more “privacy.” He grabs her ass while walking down the aisle. She responds by grabbing something else. All the mature people groan while watching them. All the single people die with envy.

9) BROADCASTERS

Who are they?

They are those who have a story they simply have to tell their friends over the phone. More often than not, said stories are a little bit risqué and personal. Hunched over with a phone in hand, they will talk to their peers, and with their booming voice, broadcast their stories for everyone in the bus to hear.

How to spot them?

Like Concert Queens, you would hear them first before seeing them. It’s the person telling a dirty joke or the humiliating story, and you think he has a friend with him, but when you turn around, you just see a guy speaking to the phone. They are hated most by ZZZombies and Students of Socrates. Miley and Robin’s however don’t mind them.

10) TRIXIE

Who is she?

Man, I cannot make this list without including the famous Trixie. From her fashion sense, her personality, and her popularity, she is definitely one of St. John’s icons.

How to spot her?

Boots, luggage, shopping cart. She normally rides either Route 2 or 3. If you’ve ever taken either of those two major routes, money on the table, you’ve seen her.

 

This article was originally published in backBEAT under the name of Jopet Angeles.
Image credit: cbc.ca

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