file photo

by Shena Newton

clack-clack-clack! Lord, what’s next! I had the mechanic look at this car twice within a week and a half, and it’s happening all over again. You know what? I can’t deal with this right now. I have to get to work. So, I coaxed my car to the parking lot of Super Value Winton. I’ll leave it there, for now, then figure out later what I’ll do. Just let me catch the next jitney and get downtown.

In a matter of minutes, the jitney pulled up to the bus stop. I mounted the steps and headed toward the back of the bus. With my hand bag on one shoulder and my laptop bag in the other hand, my legs felt a little unsteady, “Sir, please, don’t pull off yet. Let me sit down first.”

I settled into a seat mid-way down the aisle. Looking around the bus, I was super impressed. The air condition was piping. The bus was really clean, like almost brand new. All the seats were covered in plastic. Short, light beige curtains folded back hung at each bus window and the tinted glass gave a cozy feel to bus, almost like you were in a bedroom.

At the front of the bus, posters advertising concerts long past adorned the top of the inside of the windshield. Each poster featured photos of music artists, and at their side, girls, girls, girls. Girls in skimpy shorts; girls exposing bellies with navel ring, bellies flat as a wash board; girls with nothing on from waist up, hands clasping overflowing bosoms. The line up of concert posters ended near the driver’s window with a display of the Rastafarian flag, with the fearsome Lion of Judah as its center piece. Topping off this décor were two delicate, plastic red roses which hung from the rear view mirror.

Shortly after take off, the jitney driver unleashed the music. A slow, drawling rap song, “I go on and on, can’t understand how I last so long, I must have super powers….. I got girls that I shoulda made pay for it; Got girls that I should made wait for it…” Jesus! What is this on this bus today? Three to four songs later, it became clear to me, that the music blasting on this bus is carefully chosen. Rap songs with the most explicit lyrics, all rapping about the topic of the greatest universal appeal — sex.

At the bus stop on Prince Charles Drive, just before Beatrice Avenue, two young guys got on. Each held in hand a construction tools bag. They wore rugged brown work boots, jeans and T-shirt. One had a head full of short, skinny plaits that stuck out in all directions; the other one had a low trim. They dropped down on seats on the opposite side of the aisle, and started chatting away. Every other word was “Mother F-!“ or “Mother sick, dread!”

The construction guy with the wild plaits leaned forward and lightly tapped on the shoulder of the young lady in front of him. She stirred from her slumber, “Yes!” “Could you please make a call for me,” he asked her. “You ain’t calling no woman, eh?” “See there,” he pointed out, “ Ya’ll Nassau woman so damn biggity!” Nevertheless, the young lady made the call for Crazy Plaits. No answer. She tried again. No answer. Crazy Plaits settled back in the seat, quite disappointed. “You know what?” he said to the young lady, “If my girl friend call your phone back, please don’t answer. Boy, she more bigitty than you, and she bigger than you.” Man, I said to myself, this young lady is quite hefty, and if his girl friend is bigger than her, I can imagine what kind of showdown that would be. “See, that’s the same thing,” exclaimed the young lady, “People kind enough to make a call for you on their phone and you trying to set them up!” (Suck teeth!”)

We were now rolling up to the bus stop at R.M. Bailey playing field, opposite the Mall at Marathon. The music was banging, the lyrics getting hotter and hotter. Something held the attention of the bus driver because he was lingering too long at the bus stop. Oh yeah, I see what it is. On the median between the lanes stood a young lady, braids down to her hips, jeans tight as if someone had painted them on her and a mid-riff T-shirt. The bus driver was trying to convince her that she needed to get on his bus. “But, I’m not going in that direction,” she said. Three guys seated up front on the bus stood up to get a better look at the female beauty standing on the median. It was obvious. This female was relishing all that male attention. She twined her long braids between her fingers and slowly made her way back across the street, with languid, deliberate steps.

The bus continued up Robinson Road, making frequent stops to pick up passengers. At one stop, a gaggle of school children got on. My, my, look at what these young children have to endure. The atmosphere in this bus is not accidental. The posters, the music. In all my days of taking the jitney, I have never, ever, never come across a bus dripping with such X-rated sensuality. I wonder if the Road Traffic Department can do something about this.