Smoke Rings in P-Town

Today I woke up bright and early, not to prep for a Super Bowl party, but to go to church. “Well, we’re not really a church.” a member told me. “We’re a branch of the American Humanist Association.” I don’t have a car so I rely on Trimet’s bus system to get me around Rose City. The first bus drove off as I was crossing the street.

I decided to not wait outside, in the cold, for 20 minutes, for the next ride, so I went home. Worst case: I can catch the last half of the “service”. I want to write a piece about the various Atheist, and Humanist groups popping up, here and elsewhere. Humanists of Greater Portland said I could write about their program, take pictures and even meet the head of the branch. I might be late, but it’s still worth the trip.

I caught the next bus. It took the driver 40 minutes to get me downtown. Then ten minute wait for the next bus–with a man pacing around very nervously. I get on and the driver takes me two blocks down, parks, and say, “I’ll start driving again in around 15 minutes.” Then he leaves the bus to go smoke. Twenty minutes later, he gets back on, and the whole bus stinks like he shit on a pile of burning cigarettes. He’s drives awhile, and I’ve get this feeling in my gut like something’s wrong, so I ask, “Doesn’t this go up to Thurman?”

“Yeah, but it’s gonna take another half-hour cause the road work.”

I got off the bus and walked home. I paid $2.50 to be driven in a two hour smoke ring. Had the driver taken the usual route I’d have missed it anyway. Thank you Trimet for reminding me to save money for a car.

I’m not giving up. Stay turned for “Humanist After All” Where I aim to answer: Is secular church just as boring as real church? I usually work on Sundays though, so don’t hold your breath for the article, but do stay tuned!


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