In 2013, a post I made unexpectedly went viral.
- Even Tiny, Momentary Internet Virality Sucks Ass
- Subtitle: Nothing on the internet is real and we all just sit around making up stories about everything.
The post in question is below:
It's a lot of text, fairly unformatted, and fairly forgettable. The story isn't actually mine - it's screencapped from my husband's Facebook, and the events in it occurred about two years before my posting it.
I had only about 100~ followers on Tumblr and most of them were internet friends of some degree. I posted it for the benefit of this small, immediate circle to read and maybe have a chuckle at. I had no intention of it being perpetuated to the far ends of the internet.
For a while, that was it. I posted it and got a few reactions from people I knew. Imagine my surprise when I log into Tumblr some week or so later to several inbox messages and the red notification number stuck on 99+.
Some major Tumblr blog picked it up and it was all over for me. This pretty uneventful, overwrought anecdote about someone else (remember, the story isn't even about me!) missing a bus earned me accusations of lying and clout-chasing (how this story was supposed to earn me any clout, I'm still not sure).
Still, it was only three messages to this effect (and maybe some people doubting the veracity of it in the notes). I'd see waves of activity on my account as it was shared around but I was mostly left alone after that initial incident. Eventually the activity subsided.
... Until it didn't. Since the time this post was made in 2013 it's been periodically resurrected on content farms, meme groups etc, and every time it's come back again for the last decade I get to enjoy watching another batch of complete strangers make absolutely bizarre, uncharitable assessments about either me or my husband (again, a lot of the time people don't recognize the story isn't about me).
So I'm going to provide some further context and commentary, mostly to address the "inconsistencies" people have pointed out as proof the story is fake (and everybody clapped). And yeah, I'm just gonna basically dox myself because I don't care anymore.
This story takes place at stop 43 on Black Road (South), Flagstaff Hill, South Australia. There is no crosswalk here and this area has moving traffic at peak times of day. Because it's flowing and not stopped (no traffic lights anywhere nearby), you have to wait for an appropriately-sized break and jaywalk. If you've just come out of Kingfisher and the bus is already there with its doors open and letting people board, you're shit out of luck. This is what happened to him and what has happened to me dozens of times as well.
The "FMC" mentioned in his post is Flinders Medical Centre. This is the site of a hospital, a university and a major bus interchange. Out in the suburbs you might need to wait 30~45 minutes for another bus. At the FMC bus interchange, one usually comes by every 10~15 minutes.
The fact they pulled ahead of the bus isn't a plot hole at all. The bus in question is the G20. From here, the G20 doesn't take a direct route to FMC - it takes a detour down Memford Way. A car can easily get ahead of the bus and I used to exploit this all time when I was running late and begging someone to drive me to the bus stop. I have helpfully illustrated this below:
There is nothing controversial about this tale. There is absolutely nothing in this story that holds a lie that would benefit either me as the person sharing it or my husband as the storyteller. It is a story about a time my husband missed a bus and hitched a ride with a stranger which resulted in a situation that surprised the bus driver, posted to his private, locked Facebook over a decade ago and which I should have never shared publicly.
Stop posting the fucking bus story.
Leave me alone.
If you've ever thought "wow, I wonder what would happen if this took off" while posting to social media, don't.