A tram with a view

Living in Melbourne is hectic. If you want to travel by car you have to be prepared for a slow crawl along the busy roads. When you finally get to your destination, you begin the search for a parking spot and that can be extremely frustrating. The one saving grace that Melbourne has is its trams. The train system is apparently pretty bad but I haven’t used it yet, nor am I eager to do so.

So I stick to trams whenever I can. It’s an opportunity for me to observe humanity in all its glory. Having done so, however, I must confess that I would prefer to travel in my own private tram carriage just like the oil barons in the U.S did when they travelled by train in the old days.

Take yesterday’s trip to town, for example. While most passengers behaved fairly well, I was revolted by the young couple a few metres away from us. The female was cleaning her boyfriend’s ear with the long nail of her pinky. She would burrow into his ear and bring out the wax and other debris. She then would flick it onto the floor and go searching for more treasure.

In another seat a young woman was making up her face. She painted and powdered and mascaraed and then put lip gloss on her recessed mouth. Then she began to pick bits of rubbish out of her straggly hair after having scratched her scalp thoroughly. A young Asian man was watching and trying not to watch while she went about her preening. I imagined him offering her some peanuts or a banana.

I observed these young people as I usually observe other people, as animals in a zoo. I don’t shake my head, nor do I look disapprovingly at them. But I have been told that I could never play poker. When I see that sort of vulgarity I just reflect that global warming or whatever is in store for us can’t come soon enough and then perhaps we could start all over again.

Evolution hasn’t brought them very far at all. I sometimes think that humans should be in cages at the zoo and it’s the animals who should be feeding them little treats. And as for being polite and considerate, just wishing for it makes me sound old-fashioned. And doesn’t “etiquette” sound anachronistic?

I’d settle for fellow passengers not picking their noses, not picking their ears or other persons’ ears in public, nor scratching various orifices while shouting into mobile phones.

And this is everyday behaviour. Imagine what these creatures are like when drunk and in a party mood!

I suspect I’m not really keen on seeing how the other half lives. It’s simply too revolting! Why does the ordinary public have to be so ordinary? I wonder if there are various species of human beings and if perhaps the term homo sapiens is too encompassing.

It’s amazing what thoughts come into one’s mind when one is confronted by repulsive behaviour on public transport.


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