An Awesome Ride


Konstantina Sozou-Kyrkou

The bus is crammed; people jostle in the aisle, swinging hither and thither at the driver’s sudden brakes and swerves. A baby howls, an old lady flaps her fan against her flushed face.

Then the bus stops. It takes a while. An armed soldier gets off to inspect the road. Pitch dark. A roar is heard, a gunshot. The second soldier follows suit. He never comes back. The passengers stare out the window and at each other alert. Somebody knocks on the front door. The driver opens and a man, face distorted, reddish saliva dripping down his bloodied teeth – a zombie – bursts in, lunges at whomever he comes across, bites them hard on the neck. Screams and moans fill the bus. The ones that have been bitten become infected and maul the ones sitting next to them until everyone, except for the driver, runs amok, becomes a zombie.

I glimpse at my teenage son, who’s sitting on the sofa, legs crossed in front of him, mouth wide open, moist eyes glued onto the TV screen, which is filled with blooded, maniacal bodies devouring each other.

‘How can you possibly enjoy this, Son?’ I say.

‘It’s awesome, Mum. Can’t you see?’

‘Where’s the good guy to save them all from this hell?’

‘It’s Kevin Costner, didn’t you see? He just escaped the bus from the window.’

I wait till the end of the film, which finds Costner a zombie himself, his beautiful green eyes turned into a pair of dead coals.

‘I thought the good guy always wins,’ I sigh.

‘Well, not always. Grow up, Mum. That’s life,’ he says.

We watch the last scene where the same driver collects his fare as another group of passengers board the bus, ready for a ride. Then the end credits roll up and all I can see on the black screen is the reflection of my son, riffling through the TV guide, searching for another film to take him on another awesome ride.

4 thoughts on “An Awesome Ride”

  1. Dear Konstantina, your little story, is a good example of what the T.V channels feed their viewers. As you pinpoint, the themes of the movies are distorted stories (regardless the actors or their talent), which are aiming to impress, or terrify in order to impress the today viewers. The problem is that the young people are exposed to these “staff”, as they call it, and they even enjoy the horrific themes they watch, regardless their awareness of the so called low story or “quality”. The “box” serves well the people who are trying to control our existence. The answer is well known: one has to choose the best shows, the ones of educational content and of course, there are movies which can be pleasant, informative, or even funny. By now, I am almost certain, that most of the viewers are well educated re: the “χαζοκούτι”, as many Greeks call the TV screen!

    1. I hope they are (well educated) enough to avoid these ‘traps’ and this easily consumed food they call ‘entertainment’, with which they bombard us every day. Having to scream my lungs out every time I want to attract my kids’ attention to anything, from going to bed to having lunch (while they’re glued to the TV screen) makes me scared, really.

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