My legs were trashed from the night before and my booties were still wet so I took the easy way out and jumped on the bus. The bus is the bus, which is much less fun than the bike, but I was warm, dry and had a chance to write down some ideas. When I got off the MAX and started the walk to work the weather had cleared and I started to regret my decision.
The lights went my way and I quickly made my way to the street who’s name I don’t know, but it runs along the side of the building I work in. I normally walk on the left side, so that no cars sneak up behind me, but decided to move to the right when I saw a semi coming down the road. Two large puddles prevented me from sticking to the shoulder. A car came up behind me so I stopped, let it pass and stepped into the center of the street to get around the water. At the second puddle I checked over my shoulder again. A grey toyota was coming from behind so I stopped and turned to face the left side of the road, giving the driver more room.
When the car passed I inadvertently made eye contact with the passenger. Once the car passed I continued on my way, what I then saw in front of me was the man in passenger seat turned around flipping me the bird. This happens a fair amount when I’m on the bike so I followed my impulses and returned the mans salute.
What happened next is more than a little surreal.
The man turned and back handed the woman driving the car. The car crossed the double yellow and the man got out. He was taller than me by a significant amount, maybe four inches. His green baseball cap featured a straight brim and sat slightly askew on his head, the rest of his appearance was shoved to the back ground. I’m not sure why the hat sticks out. I could hear him yelling over NPRs morning edition which was playing in my ears.
“WHAT!? WHAT! MOTHER FUCKER!”
“I’LL FUCK YOU UP! I’M GOING TO FUCKING KILL YOU!”
He was coming toward me, and I kept walking forward. My first though was to try and run around him, but my legs ached with the even the thought. I didn’t think it would work. My next thought was “Today is the day you get it.” People have been this pissed at me before, and it doesn’t normally rattle me. This time was different. There was a coldness to the way this guy carried himself. I was genuinely scared for first time since in nearly two years.
He continued to scream, I removed my headphones and continued to walk toward work.
“I’m just trying to get to work. I stopped and got out of your way.” I don’t know what your problem is”
My voice was calm, I didn’t yell, though I’m sure it betrayed my fear.
I could hear the woman yelling from the car, though I can’t make out what she was saying. Whatever it was it seemed to work. He kept screaming his mantra of “WHAT!?” punctuated by the word motherfucker, but was starting to get back in the car. I came level with the car door I watched his movements from the corner of my eye. I half expected him to jump out of the car and mess me up. Three hundred feet from the front door of my work.
He slammed the door and they drove off.
That was my morning. It’s strange that this would happen on the day I was going to speak with a person who helped me through the last six months of 2011. I learned a lesson. It involves the self, the mind and their relationship to each other. It was a Luke meets Vader moment.