Sunday, March 20, 2011

Comments Cut and Pasted from an Article on Sidewalk Rage

I used to have irrational outbursts of rage,
those stopping at bottom or top of stairs or escalators in subway stops.
Later in my life I analyzed the source or rage and focused it appropriately.

I recently got in an argument
about a parking space. I was putting boxes in the trunk and I noticed a pickup waiting.
I closed the trunk and headed for the supermarket.

The driver yelled, “You could have told me you weren’t leaving.”

It is quite natural to feel annoyance. No laws need to be passed.
Idiots can figure it out. The absolute worst is those who do it mid-stair.
The elevator, bus door or subway rushers.
(Please correct me where I may err.)

After I returned I found a dent in the hood of my car.

When I am in the city, walking alone, I have a destination.
Walking from A to B, I will mutter things, walking on a sidewalk.
I don’t care about the appearance of my car.

But don’t you hate when parents use side by side strollers on a sidewalk?
Don’t you hate it when people stand side by side on an escalator?
Don’t you hate it when two slow people are walking side by side?

When I am travelling on foot
and have interacted in subtle ways with men,
I feel I am in a tribal hunting party. I find it hard
to fault people who feel the urge to strike someone:
reptilian idiots, corner blockers, hand talkers, person
with an out of state tag, the stop-and-turners,
slow movers, the home for the blind.

Civility isn’t everywhere. But it must be in a guidebook
because tourists regularly stop and take pictures.

My point is the pickup driver is an angry person;
his anger will lead to health problems, or he’ll encounter
an equally angry person who will hurt him.

I believe he is already mentally ill. A disease is much worse than a dent in my car.
I’m not sure about religion or politics but I am positive
ultra-narrow cars would make the world a better place.

Not that any of this matters.

Most men travelling in the same direction will not change course, coming out of a building at full speed. I spent most of my working days in the belief the only way was by the skin of my teeth.

If I could have changed my behaviour I would have yelled, “I’m not leaving.”
I would have pulled out and let him park there.

Song of the day: The Magic - Joan as Police Woman


Einlicht said...

I like this very much. Thank you, Sarah :)

Patricia Lockwood said...


ron hardy said...

Sarah, my biggie is the springheads who speed in the empty left lane to the head of the line where it has narrowed to one lane for construction. Then they force their way in, thus stalling the line in my lane. These individuals are the enemy of harmony and should be thrashed. Also the wingnut cyclists who have to ride side by side for conversation, coffee, whatever. One in the cycle lane, the other out in my lane. Lord.

BJeronimo said...

Whenever I have these thoughts I think I'm irrational and that I need to grasp what is important. Thank you for sharing how utterly frustrating it is living with people.

Kathleen said...

I always hope my own petty peeves will lead me to greater civility and patience. Uh...sometimes yes, sometimes no.

Walking or biking I can try, "Mebeep!"--the cry of the Road Runner--and pass on the left. Or, in the case of double bikes/strollers, through the middle?

SarahJane said...

I have often felt bad for being irritated but my expert tells me it is normal to be irritated when people show a lack of consideration in public. For example, in the train station there are going to be a lot of people IN A HURRY, so please stand to the right on the elevator.

The elevator-stander is really my pet peeve. The elevator was not invented to make people lazy; it was invented to speed things up.

SarahJane said...

Hi Bob!

BJeronimo said...

Hey, Sarah.

I didn't realize the Roadrunner said, "Mebeep." I like it nearly as much as the sentiments of this blog.

Kathleen said...

I am glad it is normal to be irritated by this kind of thing, as I often am. It is probably not normal to say, "Mebeep!" but I might do it, anyway.

Lisa Allender said...

I needed to hear these words(I deal with a
Loved one who carries a lot of rage). So glad I stopped in to read you, tonight.
See you here or on Facebook or at my blogs. :D

Jeff said...

Maybe that pickup driver hasn't learned that anger should be directed correctly. It's a tough lesson since anger is always so general - and like a bad meal may not turn up for hours. And the target long gone. So you take your shots and make dents where you can.

Why should I suffer the punishment that should be given to the other dog walkers in my neighborhood? I do my duty - no pun intended. But I'm the most visible since I have to walk Old Pepper during daylight hours. And so suffer the verbal beatings and bleatings in my suburban neighborhood.

I park my car now in the spaces that nobody wants, the ones where trees or concrete planters interrupt the grid. And have taken to walking the dog under the cover of darkness.

One must learn how to defend oneself these days.

- J.

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