Wednesday, January 27, 2016

My First Road Rage

In Oakland you can't just pull into any gas station, unless you are comfortable tuning out the tragic life story of a passing panhandler. I pretend to, but later I will be thinking, "Did her daughter really get kicked out of the homeless shelter for turning 13? No, right? But did she?" That is why I always go to a particular gas station near my house that is panhandler free and just normal.

For the past few days it has had a long line, so I thought today would be a good day to go since I was getting home after commute hours. There was a line six cars into traffic. There were people filling gas cans on the ground. The price was $1.99, less than I have ever paid. I wasn't in a hurry but as I waited and waited, I felt sort of panicked because traffic is dangerous and I would never normally go into a traffic jam like that and then get out of my car. I needed gas very badly because this station has been busy for days.

 Actually pumping gas was fine, even though there was a lot on the ground. It only took $25 so I almost topped it off before I remembered the reason. But on my way out, someone in a big green truck started backing into the spot I was in, and someone had already pulled in behind me so I honked to let both know what was happening. The driver of the green truck signaled for me to go around so I put my signal on to show I understood, and then he kept reversing at me! I leaned on the horn, reversed, and drove away. I was already angry that I had to go to the gas station when I could see it would make me uncomfortable, and then that guy was too eager to line jump to even drive safely. I was furious.

 On my way home I asked myself rhetorically why anyone would do that and realized he might be very desperate, and I swung the car around and drove back to give him whatever was in my wallet, like, go to hell if you need money. (Those are not my real feelings, just the feelings I was having right then.) Anyway he was still there when I got back (see also: big truck) but after I parked and watched traffic for a second to make sure nothing weird was happening he started to pull out. I was still so mad that I walked out onto the meridian and waited for him. I said, really forcefully, "Excuse me sir, can I talk to you?" and he said, "No, I ain't got nothing." and left. So that was satisfying.

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