Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sermon on the 49 MUNI

San Francisco is a walker’s paradise, but after three consecutive days of logging 20,000+ steps, my dogs were tired. 

MUNI passport in hand, jumped onto the 49 bus headed to Mission & 21st where my friends would meet me for dinner. I’m obsessed with punctuality; I left the hotel with ample time to spare. A traffic jam snarling Van Ness was not in my plan. Be stoic, I thought. It will clear up. But it didn’t. Not for a very long while anyway.

“We told you this would happen,” a man said in the front half of the bus. I could see him, but heard him continue, “Nobody would listen. ‘You’re just a bunch of dumb hippies.’ But we were right. There are too many of us. Gridlock! Chaos! Despair. Too many people; too bad no one listened to us dumb hippies.” 

People are human treasure. But looking at the frustrated faces of my fellow riders stuffed into this aluminum can, it was clear:  we are choking on our riches. Paul Ehrlich had the timing wrong, but he and this dumb hippie may have been right.