The tape spooled off of the old five inch reel, and I listened in disbelief to its contents. In some courtroom, decades ago, a 50-something black woman stands before a judge, charged with brandishing a knife on a bus, and tells her story.
It’s a troubling tale from the start, with her tale of a man who was “pullin’ his privates” in the sparsely populated bus, and how he followed her for a bit after the both got off the bus. Traumatized, when she got on another bus, hours later, she was caught walking up and down the aisles, brandishing the knife, unable to explain quite why to the satisfaction of the judge, but indicating that she worried the man might get on this bus, too.
Oh, the questions – why was this recorded? When? How did it end up, unlabeled, in one of the batches of tapes that I picked up somewhere?
Incidentally, I’ve labeled this track as being by “Unknown” (despite the fact that the woman in question identifies herself), so as not to broadcast her name via the labeling of the track here, where it could end up found in a search. The recording lasts about ten minutes, with no indication of why it was recorded. After she is fined, the recording is turned off, and there is about two more minutes of tape, containing the remnants of two other, unrelated recordings, which I’ve also included: