“You’re an asshole,” a young black man next to me told him, for no significant reason I can remember. I looked to the driver, to see how he would respond.
“Yup,” the driver calmly replied in a quiet voice.
“No, you’re the worst bus driver ever.”
“Yes, you’re right,” the driver responded to the boy’s continued tirade. He was getting past the moment, a duck’s waxed feathers, moving beyond judgment and hurt; letting the boy get it all out at no loss to him. Untouchable. Eventually the boy didn't how to continue. You can cut down a stiff tree, but you can't cut down reeds blowing in the wind.
I was cowed into awe by the driver’s patience and perspective. That’s character, I thought. These are the great people I look up to. You don’t see role models like that in the movies.
(That's my chicken scratch on the transfer above; it says "don't let it break you." Advice from a passenger.)