If I’m looking for sympathy over what can be accurately described as one of my daily “Car Wars,” it won’t come from KM. She reminded me of something the other day when I was telling her about a crazy incident that happened to me as I was driving around town recently.
“Don’t you remember when we used to ride to work together downtown?” She interjected.
“What?” I responded.
“You must remember,” she said. “How we couldn’t go three miles without getting in to an argument.”
She’s right. It rarely failed that whichever of us was driving, the copilot always had criticism. She went too slow for me and I, well, let’s just say I was on the other end of the spectrum. But if she’d have ever been ready on time I would have been able to take it a little slower.
But back to my most recent incident. I was headed east on the Interstate and took the exit to go south. There’s been some construction going on through there but it was very plain to me I had the right of way to continue in the lane in front of me, without yielding. So there’s that, combined with the “thank God it’s finally football season” motto of “Never Yield!” I keep hearing.
But the blonde girl in the Camry who was trying to cut in front of me must have been a gridiron fan as well and she floored it and moved right in. Truth be told, I kind of admired her moxie. But she wasn’t satisfied yet and began waving her arm energetically at me, obviously not preoccupied with that silly old rule of keeping both hands on the wheel.
The light turned red and we stopped and she kept making those same wild, frantic gestures back in my general direction. Suddenly, it all seemed pretty funny and I started laughing, which only made it worse. Then it seemed hysterical, but the more I laughed the madder she became.
The light turned green but traffic was heavy and slow and we had to stop again. Her plan was to turn right, and she got into the far right lane and I pulled on up to the next car, thinking it was all over. But instead of moving on, which she could have done, she stopped and I was now right next to her. Then she rolled her window down and began yelling at me. She was a girl in her 20’s and I think may have been kind of cute, if her face had not contorted into something that could have earned her a job as Linda Blair’s stunt girl. I kept my window up and watched as her whole head turned beet red and spit and foam dribbled down her chin.
“Does she have rabies?” I wondered, which got me tickled again and I laughed some more. But she wasn’t in a funny mood and turned away from me, appearing to be looking for something on the other side of the front seat.
That stopped my laughter because I was sure that when she turned to face me again it would likely be from behind a barrel of a .44 magnum. I looked ahead but was still blocked in. Behind was the same, with a big truck on my bumper. There was no escape. By then she had turned back toward me and I closed my eyes tight, saying a quick Hail Mary, preparing to die. Then I heard something hit my car. “Was that a bullet?” I wondered. I looked up at her just in time to see her throwing another coin at me, which bounced off my coin-proof window. I think it was a nickel.
Then, frustrated, she drove away, hopefully out of my life forever, with one last parting gesture that I don’t think meant I’m number one.
Jay Edwards is a freelance columnist who can be reached at email@example.com.