What is it about riding the bus that makes some of us wax philosophical? Maybe the rush-hour crush of bodies squeezes thoughts that had been brewing in us all day out of our brains.
I usually keep my thoughts to myself. But every now and then, I run into a public speaker who might have given Socrates a run for his money.
One frigid night on the Q26 in Forest Hills, a jolly, portly middle-aged woman tried to make conversation with anyone in her vicinity near the front of the bus. Who was watching the Golden Globes tonight? Like most of the other passengers, I quickly tuned out.
But then the woman burst out laughing, apparently at a remark of her own, making someone next to her ask: What’s so funny?
“What, I can’t laugh in public?”
“I was just wondering…”
“Why does everyone want to laugh with you when you’re laughing, but no one wants to go near you when you’re crying?”
Most in the woman’s now more attentive audience shrugged. I did, too. But I’ve been trying to figure her question out many a cold night on the Q26 since.