The Man on the Bus


The man on the bus said “God is in charge. God is in charge of all countries, not just the United States, not just Israel, not just China but God is in charge of every country. Italy. Spain. Mexico. Guam. Puerto Rico. The Dominicans. Europe. All the kingdoms of the past and all the governments of the future. God is in charge, He is large and He is ever present. Let me tell you what the United States did to you. You all worship money. I love all of you and when you can love the human next to you, then you will know that God is in charge.” He pulled a crinkled dollar bills from his pocket. “This is the enemy. I know you all gay, dope fiends, alcoholics, evil. I’m not judging y’all. I just know. I can walk down this bus, up and down this bus and tell which one of you all is good and which one of you is evil. I know y’all is going to work. Good morning. Did you remember to say good morning to Jesus Christ this morning?”

I stopped listening. He was sitting right in front of me. He looked at me as he talked. Was I one of the good ones or was I one of the evil ones? I don’t even believe in that concept but he spoke with such conviction that I felt like maybe he did have some sort of basis for comparison. Maybe I wasn’t good or bad but somewhere in between and he could tell how many points I had stacked against me. I mean what have I done in my life that is so evil? And why do I keep thinking that I am one of the evil ones?

He’s wrong about one thing though. I’m not on my way to work. I’m leaving. Leaving my apartment. Leaving my girlfriend. Leaving the dog. I got up this morning. Got dressed. Walked out with my brief case and a gym bag full of jeans and t-shirts. I normally don’t even take this bus. I’m on my way to the train station. I’m out of here. Done.

“Does your girlfriend know? Does your girlfriend know you are leaving her?” The man asked me directly. In my ears I could hear that he was still ranting. In my eyes I could see his mouth was moving and sound was coming out. He was still talking about evil and good. But no. He was asking me directly. Did she know I was leaving her?

Of course she knows. She has to. It was bound to happen and I can’t wait another minute. I cannot stand to be around her anymore. Or the dog. The dog hates me and she thinks it’s my fault.

“But you haven’t told her yet?”

She’s threatened to leave me so many times. She’s been on her way back to her mother’s now for two years. And we’ve only lived together for three. What kind of life is that? That’s not a relationship. Every time we have an argument she acts like her mom is in a woman’s shelter and I’m driving her to it. I don’t even yell at her. I barely raise my voice and she acts like I’m pushing her around.

“Damn. That bad? Be honest though… you gay right?”


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