school bus

November 30, 2007 at 4:22 pm Leave a comment

i was caught behind a school bus on my way to work this morning. normally, i don’t mind; i believe that getting kids to school is very important for their education and development into pimply faced adolescents. i often bang on about poor education and parenting being the reasons why philadelphia is the murderous cess pool that it is.

however, my opinion of education changed very quickly this morning. for two miles, a diesel burning cheese bus stopped at nearly every house, picking up a single child, who would languidly drift up the steps to the bus. meanwhile, a queue of cars stretching all the way into idaho was quickly building up behind the bus. people too far behind to see the flashing warning lights of the bus were honking, and in retaliation, drivers in front honked back. this woke up every family within a two block radius, disturbed the mating of indigenous birds, and all the carbon dioxides from the unmoving cars made a hole in the ozone layer the size of australila.

i took a school bus all throughout grade school and every morning, me and my sister would walk ten blocks, about half a mile uphill (both ways), to the neighborhood bus pickup, where about three other kids would wait for bus-driver jose to come in our clattering yellow school bus. while we waited, we chatted and played red light-green light-1-2-3. it was always fun and i believe i learned more about playing, patience, and friendship from waiting for the bus than i did from actually attending grade school.

i simply cannot fathom while today’s children idly wait for the school bus to come from their own doorsteps, within sight and earshot of their fellow students who live two houses down. it is not like they are in wheelchairs and crutches and need assistance to walk. sure, all the kids looked obese, bi-polar, and anemic but that’s all the more reason to have them walk a few blocks to a bus stop where all the children in the neighborhood can be picked up all at the same time. this would relieve congestion on the roads, bring the passenger pigeon back from extinction, and raise up a generation of fitter, more happy children. instead, sending our children to school by bus is teaching them that door to door car service is the norm, that their lives are more important than the lives of the other motorists on the road, and that being lazy is a good thing.

on the other hand, this is still better than the alternative, which happens to be my bete noire: harried soccer moms in honda minivans carting their brood to school while talking on their cell phones.

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Entry filed under: commentary, life, parenting. Tags: , , , , .

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