I’m a nice guy. But, I can have a short fuse, so I understand when other people snap — and I tend to give them a little leeway in their actions. Yesterday was a perfect example of when “other people snap”…
I was driving down a 35mph road, when the guy driving the car in front of me began to make gestures at me and tap his brakes. I wasn’t really sure why he was doing this, for I was far from tailgating him (I was a full car length away from him) and it was mid-afternoon, so I didn’t have my high beams on him. But, with each passing second, he was getting more and more agitated, flipping me off, throwing intimidating looks at me in his rearview (yes, I could see him), and generally working himself into a tizzy. And he was doing all of this without any interference from me… I was simply keeping my distance and watching him with curiosity and bewilderment… partly because I couldn’t figure out what he was mad about and partly because he had his family (or at least a girl and a child) in the car.
Then he snapped.
He slammed on the brakes, jumped out of the car and started toward my car waving his fists in fury. He was a scrappy looking piece of white trash who looked like he belonged in an old movie about the irish slums, probably late 20s and psychotic-mad. Not just a pissed-off driver, but an hysterical, out of his mind lunatic. I wasn’t worried about the physical confrontation so much as I was concerned about what this nut job might be capable of doing. So, I stayed in the car, ready for his approach with my window down, and watched as he blew up at me from screaming distance, never getting out of reach of his own car. After about 10 seconds, he got back in his car and drove off. I was still behind him, still a full car length away, when he did it again! He started with gestures and angry looks and tapping on his brakes. Then, after only about 10 more seconds, he stopped the car and got out again! Just like last time, he didn’t approach me, so I just drove around him and let him rant. From my rearview mirror, I watched as he got back in his car and continued his drive without chasing me. I’m not sure why he didn’t chase me down if he was angry enough to get out of his car — twice! — but, you can’t use logic on lunatics.
In my younger days, I might have stepped out and taught this piece of shit a lesson. But my wiser years told me that people who are out of their minds have no concept of right or wrong and have the potential for anything. A cop told me once that even though you may be bigger, smarter, stronger and faster than the other person, you have no idea if they have a knife or a gun in their car. And it doesn’t matter how good you are, the human body simply cannot deflect a bullet.
So, rather than fight this guy for reasons that still baffle me, and rather than risk an even more dangerous situation, I simply laughed at his lunacy (really, I couldn’t help it) and drove off.
I feel bad for the next innocent bystander to run across this maniac, but I mostly feel bad for his kid… for that child is going to grow up either believing that violence is the answer to everything or that child is going to grow up without a father because Mr. White Trash Psycho picked the wrong person to start a fight with.