Following the City Bus

Feb 05, 2001

RAY: Most city buses are ugly, noisy, smelly, big, and slow. (Hey, I just described my brother!) And in Our Fair City, they don't even have the decency to pull over to discharge or admit passengers -- they stop in the middle of the street.

But I discovered something interesting lately. About half the time when I drive to work in the morning, I don't mind following the city bus. In fact, I look forward to it. The question is: Why? Here's a hint: If it's snowing, I don't want to follow the bus.


TOM: Get a nice whiff of diesel fumes. Wakes you right up. It's like ... is that it? There's caffeine in diesel fuel?

RAY: But I gave this hint: If it's snowing, I usually don't want to follow the bus. I didn't want to mislead anyone, thinking that the bus would be blazing the trail for me.

TOM: Yeah. Oh ... oh, right. Ah, good.

RAY: You know, and I'd be following behind, so I wanted to put that to rest.

TOM: So, if it's snowing you don't want to follow the bus.

RAY: I don't want to follow the bus.

TOM: Wow.

RAY: And the reason I don't want to follow the bus is when it's snowing, the sun isn't out. Now, everyone knows that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.

TOM: Get out!

RAY: But it doesn't. It only does that a couple of times a year. In the winter, in fact, in the dead of winter, the first day of winter, it rises the farthest southeast that it ever rises, and it sets the farthest southwest. That is, if you live in the Northern Hemisphere. And when I drive to work, one leg of my long, long journey to work is facing the rising sun, southeast. And because I leave so, what? Early ...

TOM: Early.

RAY: In the morning, it's right on the horizon and nothing except a big, fat bus will allow me to see well enough. So, he gets blinded. You let him run the pedestrians over.

TOM: I mean, all you can see, of course, is the back of the bus. That's good enough.

RAY: It's better than anything else you can see.

TOM: Better than having a bright light shining in your eyes, which is what usually happens when the police pick you up.

RAY: So, who's our winner?

TOM: Oh! The winner is, oh, Doug Jammel or Jimmel from Everett, Washington.

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