Sunday, July 17, 2005

C'est Bizarre

I feel like I've been living in an alternate universe for the past few days, for a couple of reasons. Some are funny. Some sad.

Every second the phone remains silent is a relief.

I want to share a funny story with you. I need a bit of levity.

The other night, I was taking the College streetcar westbound on my way to the Torontoist party that I partially DJed (it went really well, thank you. Easily the most fun I've had in a while. Torontoist and I have had our differences in the past, but now we're just so in love).

After I got on the car, the driver's voice came over the speaker:

"Now. I am only going to say this once, so listen closely," he instructed. "There is some construction up ahead, so this car will be re-routing. We are going to go SOUTH....on Bay. Then we are going to head WEST...on Dundas. And finally we will head NORTH...on Spadina. We will then continue west along College. Is that clear?"

There were some giggles and a resounding "YESSS!" from the passengers. A sweet female voice piped up, "But I don't underSTAND!" More giggles.

The driver continued along the path he had set out for us and was kind of a nutbar. He sang, he whistled, he chatted to himself and was generally just a bit of a weirdo. An entertaining weirdo, but a weirdo nonetheless.

We enter Chinatown and almost total gridlock. He tells us not to panic. It'll be okay. Just put your feet up and enjoy the ride.

A few minutes later, he starts honking madly.

"Hurry up! Hurry up Mr. Ho! Mr Ho! Hurry Mr. Ho!" he starts shouting. My fellow passengers and I exchange startled/horrified looks. Our genial weirdo driver has suddently turned into a crazy racist weirdo driver and we are not impressed.

As it turns out, weirdo driver was not yelling generic asian names at asian drivers in his way. A little man comes running out of a Chinese restaurant on Dundas, paper bag in tow. He approaches the streetcar.

"Hi, Mr. Ho!" shouts the driver.

They exchange a few words in Chinese. The driver pays Mr. Ho for his dinner. Grinning, Mr. Ho deposits the bag and runs off.

The streetcar explodes into laughter.

I start clapping.

And it was so obviously not the first time that the driver and Mr. Ho had done this.

It was just this sublimely bizarre Toronto moment.

I am probably never going to learn how to drive. The entertainment value of the TTC is just too high.

(Now playing: "Mal", Johnny Hallyday)


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