Raw Material

Eleven Ways to Annoy the Person
Next to You on the Bus

Excerpted from The Book of Zines

15 MinutesKyria Crowley of the Austin-based zine 15 Minutes offers some tips to relieve the boredom of your next trip crosstown.

(1) Ask their name. When they answer, say, "Wow! That's my name, too!" Fifteen minutes later, ask them again. Say "Oh, yeah... That's right!" Repeat.

(2) When first sitting down, sink into the seat, breathe a heavy sigh and exclaim "Ahhhh... it's good to be home!" Take out a remote control and pretend to change channels. Say that the batteries must be dead. Fall asleep and snore loudly. Wake up and say, "Hey! I was watching that!"

(3) Place bets on events that have already taken place. Say things like, "I'll lay two to one odds the South wins this Civil War thing."

(4) Spray the seat with Lysol before you sit down. Place a hanky on the armrest separating the two seats. Sit as far away from the person as possible.

(5) Narrate the entire trip. "She walked to the seat, and, eyeing him strangely, decided that this looked like as good a place as any to spend the lengthy trip. 'Hello' she said, but the strange man did not answer, at least, not right away...."

(6) Remark, "Isn't it ironic how the people that you kill are the same people that you need to come to pick you up when you're finally set free?"

(7) Take out a pack of gum and say, "Boy, my ears are popping already!" Talk about how people do look like ants from way up here. Wonder out loud where the stewardess is.

(8) Ask permission for everything you do, like "Mind if I uncross my legs?" and "I was thinking of stretching my arm. Is that okay with you?"

(9) Talk about how excited you are to be on a bus. Sing songs with the word "bus" in the lyrics "Bus, bus, magic bus...." while wiggling around in the seat. Squeal a lot. Take pictures.

(10) Interview the person. Say things like, "Do we have a clip of that?," and "We'll be right back after these messages."

(11) Hang a fishing pole out the window.


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