No matter where the bus station is located, you’re going to run into somebody annoying, weird, loud, drunk, crabby or all rolled into one. As I stood checking and rechecking my phone to make sure I stood in the correct spot, I felt eyes on me.
A completely normal-looking 50-year-old guy strutted across the street and asked while yelling, “Hey! That’s not an original, is it?” From similar experiences, I could tell Mr. Normal considered himself smarter than me. Now he pointed at me.
I looked at myself and thought. “Original? What’s he talking about?” I just bought this Dickies backpack at Hot Topic for $15. I was wearing jeans because I didn’t want to talk about my leg tattoos today. “Shit. Is he going to get on my case because I’m wearing Nikes?” I bought them for $25 at an outlet store because they’re really comfortable. I don’t like football or care about Nike’s political ads.
Mr. Normal huffed and puffed, “Heh. I knew it. Your shirt. You probably don’t even know them. Typical for your generation.”
“Oh, this?” I asked as I pinched my favorite blue T-shirt featuring a photo of a young Queen Elizabeth with kidnapper-type cutout words “GOD Save THE QUEEN” covering her eyes and “SEX PISTOLS” covering her mouth.
“The Sex Pistols didn’t even have merch back then. Ha. I knew it. Poser.”
“No, I bought this at a store called Uniqlo,” I considered telling the entire story, but this guy seemed like a jerk and I wanted to return to checking my phone for the millionth time for the bus’s status. “I saw it on the sale rack. I’ve always liked the Sex Pistols.”
“Bullshit. Your generation wasn’t even—”
“Yeah, I know. I wouldn’t be born until two years after ‘Nevermind the Bollocks’ came out. But the first time I heard the album, I fell in love.”
“But you didn’t buy that shirt at a concert. Poser.”
“Nope, I saw the shirt and wasn’t expecting it. It fit and was on sale.”
I really wished I read my “Lonely Planet: Seattle” to see if this was some kind of scam to get me to kick this asshole in the nuts so he could sue me. Instead, I listened to him berate anybody younger than 50. I prayed to the angels of Sid Vicious, the Ramones and Ian Curtis that the bus would arrive – or hit Mr. Normal.
I didn’t give him any more thought, but later, a college gal was talking about how Mark Wahlberg was a crappy actor. I replied, “Come on. ‘The Fighter’ and ‘The Departed’ were cool.”
“Yeah, but I like his music.” She smiled as I gawked.
I wanted to say, “Wait, you weren’t even born when ‘Boogie Nights’ came out!” Then I remembered the Sex Pistols conversation. Just because I was alive before her, doesn’t make me a bigger fan.
But she knew the answer before I asked the question. “Nothing gets me pumped up for a workout like ‘Good Vibrations.'”
OK, you’re officially a bigger fan. A weird one, but much bigger.