February 23, 2011

Buses and Boobs

The following is a list of things to do while riding as a passenger on a bus (or other public transport). I realize most sane humans already follow these guidelines, but I feel a friendly reminder can always be helpful in case, just maybe, you forgot.

1. If you will be traveling in a bus, please make sure your personal hygiene is up to par.

(This obviously also applies to everyday life, please take note.)

2. It is fine to listen to music on the bus, but please limit this listening to ear buds and not a speaker surround sound.

I understand your love for Justin Beiber* but I would rather shove a pencil in my eye than listen to his music for my hour commute.

* Justin Beiber can be replaced with any other annoying generic singer or group like Taylor Swift, Miley Cyrus, Nickleback or Creed.

3. Talking on the phone is allowed because, obviously, you have time to kill, but please note the difference between talking and yelling.

I get it, you are upset because your boyfriend forgot to send you flowers for some non-descript holiday, and you want to vent to a friend, family member, pet, etc., but leave that conversation for the two of you and let me fill my own thoughts with delusions of grandeur.

4. If you are not handicapped, crippled, or sick, don’t sit in handicap seats.

This rule is similar to the handicap parking principle except not worthy of a fine. Listen, we all get tired, we all have days where walking three more feet seems like eternity, but when you look in the eyes of a poor old woman who can barely stand and just wants to knit her new grandchild a pair of mittens how can you say no?! Personally, this story breaks my heart for all the old ladies out there with an affinity for knitting.

5. Don’t take off your shoes.

This is not your living room. This is a bus. Don’t confuse the two in your need to make yourself comfortable. Also, the foot odor that you are letting escape through your shoes is filling the recycled air and the nostrils of all 30+ passengers. Need I say this is disgusting? Well let me be clear: this is disgusting! Keep your shoes on! I don’t care about your hard day nor do I want to smell it.

6. If you need to breastfeed your child in the seat next to me, please don’t use my boob as a baby head rest.

First, breastfeeding your baby on a public bus is weird for the most part and the bus isn’t even the place to have such a private moment between you and your child. With the 30+ onlookers you are just allowing strangers to oogle at your nipple as you wait for the baby to latch on. I forget when the bus became a place for one’s inner exhibitionist to come out and play.

Now, I don’t have a child, and after watching this, probably won’t be having one anytime soon, so I am very na├»ve to the breastfeeding process. With that said, if you know you will be commuting with child, don’t you prepare yourself with bottles of breast milk or formula? Isn’t this the logical resolution? I’m just saying!

Anyway, I digress, if you are to breastfeed your child in a bus don’t sit next to me and then use the leverage of my chest to pose as a pillow of sorts for the baby to rest on while you breastfeed. When I came on the bus after my 8 hour work day I did not sign up for this job! When I sit in the bus I would like to be encapsulated by a bubble, a “bubble effect” if you will, don’t fuck with that! You are breaking my bubble with your annoying baby and with no care for my feelings.

I get it, babies, in general, have to eat and the baby probably thinks two sets of jugs are better than one, but leave me and my knockers out of it. Just because I am female does not make me any more inclined to be alright with this; in fact quite the opposite. I am horrified that I am sitting next to this. But I am an adult, so I show restraint. I would love to start yelling and embarrass you enough in the hope you would find a new seat mate who would be more inclined to deal with your shit. Instead, I choose to pretend this is not happening until I feel the pressure of your baby's head squeezing my boob and then I am back to the reality of my cramped bus seat and met with the smirks of other passengers who feel bad for my situation but find this delightfully entertaining.

So to people who find this process the norm, what the fuck is wrong with you? Find another place to feed your child that doesn’t involve nipple-sucking, me, or my boob. Let it be a singular act that you and your child can enjoy together. Let me offer a few places to do this:

- A BATHROOM, maybe even one with a stall made for this activity,

- an office with a closed door,

- did I say bathroom?!

There are many places. Find one and leave me and my bubble the fuck alone.

I hope these bus rules have helped you in determining your behavior the next time you take on public transportation. I know this will definitely be beneficial to me and my hour commute home.


7 comments:

  1. Yes, it's pretty clear you don't have kids, as you obviously know nothing about feeding them. I agree that having them rest on you is just weird, but as far as the rest of your breastfeeding thoughts go you need to grow up.

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  2. I have lots of kids and I only had to breastfeed my first child in the shopping cart at the grocery store once to realize that this is not a public activity. Unless you live in a place like Papua New Guinea where you might also be expected to eat your baby during sorcery initiation ceremonies. But they probably don't have grocery stores there. Or buses.

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  3. In Estonia, babies breastfeed themselves.

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  4. Jeez Sunshine N' Rainbows--Stop abusing your discretion and telling us how you really feel!!!

    : )

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  5. Probably just a childless white male who needs to grow upFebruary 24, 2011 at 1:56 PM

    @ Anonymous #1: Actually, I think you need to grow up, or at least listen up. Merely having a baby does not give a person unmitigated social immunity from every conceivable faux pas. I'm tired of hearing people imply that a baby is like some talismanic permit that gives its owner license to act outrageously. I know you aren't necessarily saying that baby-owners have carte blanche to do whatever they want, but what you seem to consider as acceptable behavior is, in my view, far too broad. And it doesn't matter whether Sunshine (or I) has kids. She doesn't need to be a woman to have a view on abortion, she doesn't need to be a minority to have a view on affirmative action, and she doesn't need to be a parent to have a view on whether indiscreet breastfeeding in public is socially acceptable. At any rate, there are several millions of new mothers in this country that don't flop their breasts out in public. If they can figure out a way to feed their babies discreetly, then I'm sure you can too.

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  6. I wish I could "like" comments because that last one would definitely get my vote.

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  7. Don't know what to think of it, but why shouldn't someone have the right to breastfeed in public? We don't eat in closets, so babies may too? Also, I still don't get this big problems you Americans have with nipples. In many, many other countries in the world it's normal to breastfeed in public, only islamic countries are probably worse.

    Why is it indiscrete? Why is it indiscrete in the US to talk about politics and religion? How do you avoid that?

    I don't think, having a baby gives you rights above others, but I don't think you have the right to make a judgement if doing something in the public is right or wrong.

    Also, bottles and formula seem in your eyes a good solution, but in fact it makes a big difference to breastfeed directly, because actually the best milk for a child is the one it suckles itself from the mother due to hormonal reaction and the interaction that can happen between mother and child, thus the mother feeds the baby exxactly what it needs.

    Maybe you think, that you would be ashamed of yourself, if you were forced to breastfeed publicly, but since you don't have that problem yourself and the women who breastfeed publicly apparently have the self-confidence to do that in your society, it's not your problem. You do not need to feel ashamed for others.

    Please, relax and try somethings different, I recommend naked saunas in Europe.

    Says seventeen year old girl from Germany who definitely hasn't had a baby yet.

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