Keeping it real February 9, 2011

I bet there is nothing more annoying then listening to a guy from Austin, TX complain about the cold. Sure, its actually cold here, but it’ll probably be 80 by the end of the week. Meanwhile I hear it snowed another 6 feet back home in Michigan.

So, I’ll save you the whining and just say that when I stepped outside into a rainy 23 degree day my thinned down Texas blood wimped out on the idea of riding my bike to work. Instead I huddled around the bench on the street corner until I got a ride on one of America’s great grounding rods.

My buddy Stew Johnson (Anthem) says that he likes to take at least one bus trip a year to keep things in his life real. I agree, there is nothing like a cross country trip on a Greyhound bus to help you realize how good your life is. Sharing a ride on a bus loaded with ex-cons, junkies, potential be-headers and generally desperate people force feeds you a slice of “real” life. Spend a few days bouncing around in one of those buses and Stew promises you will thank the heavens to get back to your ordinary life no matter how shitty it seemed before your trip. Of course Stew has been listening to the same Descendants records on repeat for the last 35 years… his wisdom is questionable.

This morning I was just hopping on a city bus though, not nearly as dramatic. I did spend  a good chunk of the ride listening to two men talk about sleeping outside in this weather though. Being homeless sucks! The one man talked about how he had one really good military-sleeping-bag that kept you warm in the freezing rain but how he always let his wife use that one and he was just plain cold all night. I don’t think I often imagine a married couple holding together while homeless in the freezing cold. I’m sure it happens all the time though. It happens way too much. I wonder how people survive up in the really cold places without shelter?

And then my stop came up and I was back to my daily routine.