Date a girl who rides the jeepney. Date a girl who leaves the house armored in comfortable clothes that won't draw attention from innocent bystanders. Heaven knows commuting in the metro may sometimes challenge not only a person's patience but also her flexibility and agility. Date a girl who has a dependable purse filled with coins to use at her disposal, may it be for filthy street children with dubious white envelopes or for early morning "Barya lang po sa umaga." fees.
Find a girl who rides the jeepney. You'll know who she is because she's always the one who strategically places herself in front of other commuters in order to hail a passing PUV and get on one before she loses her seat to another rushing student or employee. The one who will "accidentally" elbow another out of her way if the situation calls for it. You see that unassuming girl with fierceness and determination in her eyes? That's a bona fide commuter who will use her wits and everything in her arsenal to get to her destination on time.
She's the girl who can appear to be comfortable while sitting inside a bursting jeepney with only half or quarter of her butt in contact with the seat. In short, she is squatting, but she will make you believe that she is pleasantly sitting on a leather bench, even though her legs are slowly giving up on her.
Lean forward and let her squeeze in.
Look at her earphones. You can always tell an authentic jeepney rider by the way her earphones are loyally stuck to her ears even though there are eardrum shattering bass beats loud enough to wake up Andres Bonifacio from the grave emitting from the vehicle's speakers. You will wonder if she could hear what she's trying to listen to at all with the acoustic pandemonium drowning everyone within the 5 meter radius. Don't judge her. She only knows the inevitable chance and has experienced the horror of riding a jeepney and getting stuck listening to some wannabe street pop star murder her favorite song and convert it to a Tagalog Rap->Melodic Popular Song Chorus->Tagalog Rap ensemble.
It's easy to date a girl who is used to riding a jeepney. Hand over her bayad to the driver and pass back her change and she will be forever grateful. Get to know her by making small talk about the matinding pangangailangan of the driver because he seems convinced that his vehicle could hold 50 passengers. When you two go out on a date, you will not be pressured to bring a car or hail a cab. Just get in line at the FX terminal and she will look upon you with thankful eyes.
Don't hesitate to ride a jeepney with her and accompany her home especially in the late hours of the evening. Defend her against perverts and pickpockets that wander around the town at this time of the day. Drape your arm protectively over her legs or torso and show the world that she is yours and yours to protect. Keep her close because you don't want her sliding to the other end of the bench when the driver suddenly breaks. And he will.
Disappoint her. Because a girl who rides jeepneys knows that some things are not given back. Like the two pesos change for her 10 peso coin. She will just look at you expectantly but will not say a thing. It will be up to you to decide to notice her and give back what is due.
Treat her well. Because a girl who rides jeepneys understands that someone like you will only come once in a long while. But like waiting for a ride and boarding one that she deems worthy, if at any point she decides to leave, there will always be a next one to come along. She may not know when the next vehicle will come or how long she may wait alone on that street curb, but she is certain that there will be someone to pick her up and take her home.
If you find a girl who rides these patched-up automobiles, never let her go. Because she will stay with you even though you yourself have stitches that have yet to heal and mismatched parts from breakdowns from long ago. She will not complain about your imperfections and will accept it wholeheartedly the way she has accepted the noisy engine and the teeth rattling shakes from the utility vehicle she's used to riding.
Date a girl who rides jeepneys because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can take the heat, the humidity, the specks of rain and the claustrophobia of a relationship. She will accept these challenges if that's what it takes to get to the destination that you and her have agreed upon. And in times when you least expect it, she will take you on a ride. And believe me when I say that it will be the best ride of your life. No pun intended.
This is supposed to be a parody of all the "Date A Girl Who Reads/Writes/Talks/Walks" that seems to be floating all over the internet recently, or not so recently, I am apparently behind the times with these literary fads. I guess it turned out to be more serious than I intended but you get the drift. It's not to be taken seriously as with these other works of art but, hopefully, readers will get some sort of substance from me making fun of usual scenarios while commuting, specifically riding a Jeepney here in Metro Manila. If you are looking for more serious versions of this prose, by all means, visit the lovely works by these brilliant writers. I am but an imitator.
Date a Girl Who Reads by Rosemarie Urquico
Date a Girl Who Writes by Aura
You Should Date an Illiterate Girl by Charles Warnke
P.S. Reposts are encouraged but please include a link back to this original post, preferably with the author's name. Comments are greatly appreciated. Thank you.