Advice: Staying Warm While Waiting For The Bus

Dear Samuel, 

Long time reader, first time caller! Love the blog! It’s great! Quick question- Waiting at the bus stop is becoming horrendous in this cold weather. Any tips, you good-looking son of a bitch?

Love, Samuel Z.

Great question and one I can totally relate to, Samuel!

Winter is here and for those of us living in the colder urban environments this means that standing at the bus stop is really a pain in the tuchus. Of course winter doesn’t just mean cold waits but also inclement weather that can delay buses. What does a delayed bus mean? Longer waits. Whoop-de-fucking-loo. Here are some of my great suggestions:

  • Exercises to keep your blood flowing. My favorite is to ride an imaginary bicycle, although with my bad knees I can’t do this for long. Jumping-Jacks are also good.
  • Urinating on yourself may seem like a good idea at the time but soon that warm liquid will freeze and then your thighs are frozen shut.
  • Use what resources you have. If you’re in a three-sided shelter like we have in Amherst than maximize its efficiency by pushing it over and positioning the entrance away from the oncoming wind.
  • The more people waiting for the bus the better. Huddling for warmth is good but get as close to the center as you can. During this time of year I carry a blue permanent marker with me so that in times like this I can color my hands and face and tell people I’ve got hypothermia. Their sympathy means that they’ll put me in the center so that I don’t die.
  • Stay positive. Instead of thinking that the bus is late because the universe is punishing you for cheating on your French quiz in Sophomore year, think that it’s late for a good reason. Maybe they ran over someone you really don’t like. Imagine the bus crushing your least favorite celebrity (Jack Nicholson) or relative (Ken).
  • Super cold? Fake a heart-attack so an ambulance is called. Once they’ve picked you up tell the paramedics that you left your health insurance information at your apartment. They’ll pull up at your apartment, you run inside to “get your health insurance information” and then you lock the door. Free ride home!
  • Take this opportunity to learn new things about your body. If there’s a willing partner you two can stay warm by engaging in a frisky exploration of the other’s body. Why limit it to just you two? Invite everyone waiting with you to join in! (This is how my Great-Aunt Hortensia met her second-, third-, and sixth-husband.)

Stay warm out there!


Well that’s all I’ve got. Anyone got anything to add? Leave a comment below. And if you’d like me to answer a question from someone who isn’t me feel free to e-mail it to me:

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