A long time ago, when I was in school, I remember other kids saying things like "That kid is so (insert derogatory adjective), he rides the short bus." or "I bet he/she rides the short bus." Since I grew up in a very small town, there were many of us who rode a short bus to school or to athletic events, but I knew that there was something no so great about "riding the short bus" when used in that context and that is was said in a mean-spirited way. However, I wasn't exactly sure why people associated mental or physical disabilities with a bus size.
Well, now that I'm grown up, my daughter rides the short bus. My daughter has a disability. She has to have someone help her on and off the bus. Every other child on the bus also has some type of disability (physical or otherwise). It makes me wonder if my daughter will now be made fun of because she really does ride the short bus. I think I hate the short bus, but I love the kids who ride it.