The Skater Tsunami, The Dining Wrestler, A Well-Combed ‘Stache and Silly Bus Riders

Last Wednesday:

Passing through Simcoe Park (near Front Street, just outside my building), I almost walked smack-dab into either a skate camp or impromptu skaters’ convention. Could’ve been guys making a skating video. There were, like, 50 of them. Skateboarders landing tricks, a couple of them filming the stunts on cameras.

One of them apparently landed a really good trick when I wasn’t looking, ’cause there was a cheer and scattered clapping from the skating comrades seated around the outer edge of where the action was happening.

I started making my way west towards Blue Jays Way. That’s when I heard it: the sound of 200 little wheels bolted to boards, whirring, grating and scraping against the concrete. I turned around to see the legion of skaters making their way west on the sidewalk, lead by their fearless commander, who was kicking, pushing and coasting his way in between cars in the middle of the street.

Almost like a swarm of hornets, most of them jumped the curb onto the street, diagonally crossed over to the other side, and just as deftly got up on the sidewalk on the other side and did an almost simultaneous group dismount, jogging up the far-western stairs of the Metro Convention Centre complex – in the direction of the CN Tower and Rogers Centre, from my guess.

An urban symphony, if I ever heard or saw one.

Last Thursday:

Met Shakespeare for dinner (begrudgingly). After he called the first time to say he wouldn’t make it until 8:30, I made my way to the Chinese restaurant we were meeting at. As I was being seated by the window, I noticed this white guy with long hair, sitting with this young woman. It didn’t take me any time to figure out it was Bret Hart, a.k.a. “The Hitman”. I think I did a pretty good job of not gawking or staring, but I was thinking, “Dude! I watched you when I was, like, 11 !”

I kept sneaking glances at him eating with his lady friend, even when I got hungrier, wearier and more annoyed as Shakespeare took longer and longer to arrive (finally making his grand entrance at 9:24 p.m.). The funny thing? Even though I was having my own disagreement and drama at dinner, a couple of brain cells still managed to detach themselves and scream with delight, “Dude! I CAN’T believe Bret “The Hitman” Hart is EATING at the same restaurant!” To which a couple other brain cells replied, “Relax, man. He’s just a dude in town, eating dinner with his girlfriend. He puts on his shorts one leg at a time like everyone else. Stop looking.” I still kept glancing over the divider at the other table. I couldn’t help it.

And he was there a long time. He and his friend stayed just as long as we did. They left before us, though.

Today:

Waiting for the bus to arrive – I was just glancing around and spacing out to pass the time, when I glanced to my right, just in time to see this middle-aged man in the midst of combing his moustache, and then whipping his little banana-yellow comb back into his pocket.

This isn’t a judgement against someone keeping a neat appearance in public. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone combing his moustache before. I’m sure men do that sort of thing every so often, right? I mean, there are probably some dudes out there whose ‘staches are begging and pleading for a combing. I just thought it interesting.

*****************************************************

After running an errand, I caught a second bus home. As the second bus pulled up and the doors opened, all I could hear was the driver yelling, “Don’t push the door! DON’T push!” And there was this dude, pushing at the back door. And it wasn’t one of the newer buses that requires you to push the bar to open the door. And I could hear the little bell going off, and the driver yelling, “You want to push?!” and I didn’t hear the rest of it – he was probably telling him off.

So the guy pushed his way off the bus, I got on, and by the time I got to the back, the driver was on the speaker, giving bus riders a Lecture about NOT pushing the door when they get off the bus.

Fair instruction, right?

About five or seven minutes later, this passenger makes her way (from her seat in the front half of the bus) to the back, where – when the bus had slowed down to her stop — she proceeded to push at the door. Several people, including this middle-aged dude sitting closest to the back door, proceeded to say, “Don’t push! Just wait!” I even heard myself saying aloud not to push (but not loud enough).

But apparently she knew better than everyone else, because she stubbornly (or stupidly) continued to push on the door. The middle-aged guy, probably a bit exasperated at her stubbornness/stupidity, said, “Hey, don’t push! Just stand on the step and the door will open.” The annoying little dinging bell rang. The doors eventually opened, and she got off. I looked at the passenger directly across from me, and we both smiled and shook our heads.

And despite all that, there were still a couple other “pushers” on following stops.

People. Sigh.

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