This morning I was riding the bus to work, two stops away from my transfer point (oh Main and Broadway, what a wild world you are), when something crazy happened.
Let me set the scene a little bit better: I was on a bus full of late elementary or middle school aged children. (Do they do middle schools in Vancouver? I don't even know. They were just introduced in my boondoggle hometown when I was graduating high school.) Typically I am completely ageist and dread experiences like this. Really, busses full of any group of people that are not exactly like me fill me with a desire to recoil in horror: children, tweens, teenagers, young university students, and old people. I avoid them all like the age-stereotypical plagues that they become when they band together in groups. So needless to say, I was not excited about being on a morning bus full of young snot-monsters who think they're too cool to have snot but still actually have it all over their faces, all whilst squeeling at high pitches and yelling about whatever the new thing is that kids yell about. The bus was full and I was pushing as far back as I could to make room, all whilst burying my face in my book in desperate hope to avoid the terror of beholding such young and frightening faces.
This is when the story changes.
I look up and a boy has gotten out of his seat and is offering it to me.
May I repeat: a pre-teen aged boy offered me his seat on the bus.
What the what now, what is going on in this world??? This boy's gallant chivalry (and yes, fellahs, offering your seat on the bus to a lady does make her feel like you are gallant and chivalrous - see how it's actually not that much work to be a gentleman?) is forcing me to revisit my blatant stereotyping of the younger generations, and I just don't even know what to do about it. I mean, what's the universe trying to tell me? That I can't paint an entire group of people with one brush of distaste? That sounds ridiculous and scary.