Was driving to Panera today. At a light, my car was a smidge too far to the left, momentarily blocking the turn lane into a shopping plaza. A car honked at me and inched forward. The man behind the wheel looked at me and flashed the middle finger.
I was in no mood.
He turned into the plaza, and I followed. He saw me in his rearview mirror and, at this moment, was either going to stop or pull away. He pulled away—speeding through the parking lot. I followed. He turned left. I followed. He turned right. I followed. I was wearing my dorky Sports Illustrated winter cap and driving a Prius, so I clearly wasn’t that intimidating. But I am pretty tall, and my scowl is, uh … eh, yeah. I’m not intimidating.
But this guy seemed scared. The man who flashed me the finger was desperately trying to pull away—and I wouldn’t let him. I wanted him to stop and roll down his window. I wanted to say, “Is there something you wanted to tell me, dickwad?” Man, did I want that.
Eventually, he drove away. Eventually, I realized what a complete ass I’d been. I often tell my kids to turn the other cheek, and here I was, stalking down some angry fella in a Ford. What if I had kid some pedestrian on the parking lot? What if he had a gun? Or if he was handicapped? Maybe he was just having a really bad day. Maybe his wife is in the hospital. Maybe he just got laid off.