After a recent accident, the Bus Authority of India has issued a checklist that every bus driver and conductor should use and follow strictly to ensure a safe and pleasant journey. If they fail to comply with even one of the rules, they are court martialled and sentenced to death.
One of the writers of Lol-land worked as a bus conductor for the deluxe interstate buses during the recent recession (actually, even before that), and smuggled the whole checklist by memory, in the interest of the general public (taking inspiration from thousands of dummy candidates in entrance examinations).
The Interstate Bus Checklist
Mark a tick next to each rule. Submit the filled form to the driver.
Before Starting Journey
1. Ensure at least 3 different people are booked to each seat. Bookings to non-existent seat numbers are also encouraged.
2. Spray the seats with a light coating of sweat odorant before the journey to establish the ambience of the coach.
3. Throw everyone's luggage into the belly of the bus from a 10 foot distance to hone your aiming skills. Crockery and glassware are not to be thrown - put them in carefully and use them as targets for remaining bags. Make sure you put suitcases that look similar together; as Govinda and Salman have taught us, mixed up luggage is the surefire way to finding the love of your life.
4. Make sure to check that the air conditioning is properly set to conk off at 12 noon and 12 midnight, whichever is first. Make sure the total noise level in the bus with engine, air conditioning, and TV sounds like a helicopter landing. If not, buy some vuvuzuelas.
In bus entertainment
1. The movie you have selected must feature one of the three actors Salman Khan, Govinda and Akshay Kumar. Movies like Partner, which feature more than one of them, are gifts from heaven, and should be screened once a day.
2. The plot of the movie you have selected has at least four of the following elements: terrorists with a mortality rate of 10 per minute, a physical disability, a mental disability, a faithful animal helper, an initially strict father who dies/starts dancing/turns evil, multiple heroines in love with the same hero, more than 15 songs.
3. The volume is turned up to 11. Install a timer that automatically increases the volume proportional to the number of people on board trying to sleep. If everyone on the bus manages to sleep despite the movie, the TV will explode and you should stop at the next town to buy a louder TV.
4. Always keep a backup of Bhojpuri songs and surround sound speakers system in case the TV doesn't work or explodes.
5. The movie should end at 4 AM, or whenever people have lost all desire to sleep, whichever is later.
6. The movie you have chosen is at least 3.5 hours long, and is to be followed by another 3.5 hour long movie, at the end of which a 2 minute toilet break will be taken. Only thus can bladders be taught that there is pain and suffering in life, and after all these Oscar-worthy movies deserve a 'captive audience'.
During the journey
1. Use your state-of-the-art, secret GPS system to find each pothole in the road. Go over 50% of them if it is the day. At night, you have to catch 'em all.
2. If the bus is not full, stop in the middle of nowhere and sell the remaining seats at a discount price plus 350% sales tax. Make sure they look and smell like axe murderers, thereby enhancing the experience for the rest of the passengers. If the bus is full, spread love by making your passengers 'addjest' with the axe murderers.
3. When a destination arrives, never announce its name to the passengers. Help them discover their inner Sherlock by letting them figure it out for themselves using the names of the shops on the roadside.
4. At night, wander over the bus, shining torches in passengers' eyes, with the excuse of checking on some weird sounds coming from their seat.
5. Of all the innumerable stopping places on your highway, choose only the best - the ones with the nastiest, dirtiest, stinkiest toilets. A rule of thumb is to choose hotels without signs, or hotels with names of women in their title. An easier rule of thumb is to choose hotels which have only trucks parked outside. Finding a dhaba featuring a-hole-in-the-ground toilet nearby will get you a diligence award.
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