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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

She Tried to Act Like She Didn’t See Me. So I Smacked Her One.

While I have a couple different bus stops I can go to in the morning, I have one I prefer. Sure it’s not as “fancy” as the other bus stops, with their high-falutin’ “enclosures” and their extravagant “posted bus schedules”, but I like it.

All but one little aspect of it, anyway.

You see, this particular bus stop is at a four-way stop.

And already, I’m slightly off the point because “four-way stop” is a misnomer. There may have been a time when the “stop” bit of it was accurate. Or it’s possible that “four-way pause” was already taken.

Maybe “four-way hesitation” was too flip.

As a walking person, as a citizen of the sidewalks, I take offense at the rolling-stop, particularly in a neighborhood with foot traffic, with sidewalks and strollers and children and dogs. On my two feet, I stop, I look, I cross streets quickly as both a safety measure for myself (I am soft, cars are crunchy) and as a courtesy to those safely encased against the elements by glass and metal.

Now if we could get the cars to do it.

Do I sound bitter? I do? Why, it was just the other day that I had a small “Midnight Cowboy” moment.

Raining, the air heavy with pollution particles encased in humidity, I was well into the intersection next to the bus stop when a car pulled up and proceeded to roll through its legal obligation.

Maybe she didn’t see me, me with the blue skirt and the orange umbrella.

“Hey!” I shouted, using the umbrella to soundly whap the front end of her car. “I’m walkin’ here!”

I don’t look like Dustin Hoffman, but I play him in the streets.

She didn’t get out of her car – perhaps the crazed look in my eye as I contemplated both a brief hospital stay and how much psi it would take to break a headlight with a collapsible umbrella made her think twice.

I watched as she pretended to brush her hair from her temple, all the while casually locking the door with her elbow and staring fixedly ahead.

Frankly, I’d have locked it, too.

Of course, for the next five minutes or so, as I waited, I stewed in my little raincoat. How dare she not see me! Twit! Nincompoop! Treader of other people’s toes! And she calls herself a driver?! Driving is a privilege, not a right! I should make a citizen’s arrest! Why I oughta…

And then the bus pulled up. The warm, dry bus.

And I mounted the steps, collapsing my umbrella-cum-car-beater.

And I relaxed.

Until next time, my metal-encapsulated adversary.

24 comments:

Ms Sparrow said...

Way to go, Pearl! Show those pushy drivers they can't get away with that stuff! I'll bet that your umbrella whack shook her up as much as it did you.

Pat said...

Wow, and I thought that was called a California stop. Its endemic. I hope she learned her lesson well.

broken silences said...

Lucky you had your umbrella with its orange glory.

Lesley said...

HAHAHAAAA!!

I was laughing as soon as I read the title. From then on it just got better and better!!

Tail-Kinker said...

Way to go! I too have whacked someone's car when they almost hit me in a crosswalk.

Cheeseboy said...

Your blog is officially one of my favorites now. This was thoroughly entertaining to read.

Kavi said...

Everybody has rides. And Pearl has a special ride ! Everyday !

Lovely to catch up after some time !

Sweet Cheeks said...

Remember back in the day when you could actually take your time and cross the street? Not anymore. Now, you pretty much have to run just to make it before walk light turns to the don't walk light.
When is life going to be like in 'Back to the Future' and we fly-drive in the air? =]

Jennifer said...

Great post! :D I too fill your pains. I walk everywhere...

Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

good going!! Hope she learnt her lesson!!

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

A car once come to a stop in contact with the side of my knee. In the crosswalk. Didn't have an umbrella, so I had to use my voice. "Hey! What's the MATTER with you? You HIT me!" She looked away and continued TALKING ON HER CELL PHONE. I had to continue crossing the street, or I'd have been hit by cars from every direction. But as I did, I thought about always carrying an umbrella for just such an occasion. You've done my job for me!

savannah said...

our city has had to put up signs reminding people that pedestrians have the right of way! it's crazy! good on you for channeling ratzo! xoxoxox

Louisiana Belle said...

"I don’t look like Dustin Hoffman, but I play him in the streets."

You're awesomely funny. :)

a Broad said...

Brava ! It sometimes takes "Crazy" to make someone wake up and be aware ... you might have saved a life by doing that .. She drove home a little more cautiously ( god knows, there might be another lunatic crossing the street) and perhaps a child on a bike was safe because of you.

Thinking of it that way- you should do this more often.

besos... C
I admire anyone who channels Ratzo Ritzo .. !

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

You shoulda give it another few whacks, Pearl!!! The door woulda lockedwith fast hands versus a non-chalant elbow, and undoubtedly you'd see her fear at seeing you!

Glad you got your lick in, Lady!

Gigi said...

Can you please, please come here? I need you to whack a few cars with your umbrella. The ones that have not yet figured out that it is ILLEGAL to block an intersection just so they can get through the light! Yeah, can you tell I've just dealt with this issue less than 20 minutes ago and am still feeling aggravated and self-righteous??

Love, love your blog! Am not a frequent commenter but I'm here everyday!

Bossy Betty said...

Pearl! Oh, you wrecked havoc with her just through the power of your mind, Baby! Never fear. That's how absolutely powerful you are!!

Ponita in Real Life said...

You go, girl!!!

I once watched a pedestrian slowly pour his steaming hot coffee across the hood of a car that had stopped right in the middle of the crosswalk, blocking the foot traffic. The driver yelled and gesticulated... with windows closed and door locked. You could just see the pedestrian daring him to come on out and do that... loved it!!!!

FabuLeslie said...

It would have been funny if before she could lock the doors, you just pulled open her passenger door and jumped in out of the rain and said, "It's about TIME, Geez! Took ya long enough! It's raining cats and dogs out there!!" And then sat there waiting for her to drive you to work. Then you could give her directions to your work. And then when she said you were crazy, you could have said, "What? You don't want me in your car? Well, I don't want you in my crosswalk!"

Jocelyn said...

Crap. I was so sure you were going to have residual anger in you that took itself out on the bus driver. "Duck, Bus Driver! Pearl will decapitate you with her umbrells!"

You can imagine my disappointment.

Tempo said...

..Hmm, the sight of you makes people lock themselves in their cars? You dont look that scary Pearl...what is it we dont know about you? LOL

Zaedah said...

Man, you're like a four-way crossing ninja! All stealth with your weapon at the ready! Wish I had seen he traffic feed on that incident : )

Flea said...

It's something wherever you are. Here in Tulsa, people park in the fire lane and go in to shop. All over town. Especially at schools. I can't tell you how often I've contemplated keying said cars.

Last week I went into the school office and grumbled about it and the volunteer behind the desk had the audacity to say that it was okay as long as they were just running in and out. IT WAS OKAY TO PARK IN A FIRE LANE ILLEGALLY AT A SCHOOL. GAH!!!!!

IndigoWrath said...

Hey Pearl! Just waiting for the bus drives me into a frenzy, but with this incident I'd be incandescent. INDIGO. SMASH! RAAAAAR! *ahem* Indigo