Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Road Rage on Paper

I am not a road rager. I come from a family of fast drivers, lead-footers, and at least one family member (side-eye to you there, Dad) that has threatened to mount and RPG launcher onto the hood of the car. I married someone who is increasing impatient with left-lane drivers,  non-turn-signal-users, etc. However, I am not a road rager. Now, I won't say that I'm not above mentally commenting on the character of other drivers (Chris, you know what I'm talking about here) when they do something particularly moronic, but I don't generally act on my five-dollar-word descriptions.

Except maybe last Monday.

Ok, so maybe it was that Monday wasn't the greatest day at work, or the fact that we were about to have company and all I wanted to do was pick up something to grill so we could be good hosts. Whatever the case, I drove into the grocery store parking lot, which was very packed in the immediately-after-work hour. I was cut off by a black Audi who was driving extremely aggressively for a parking lot. The Audi whipped into the front handicap spot right next to the door, and I had a feeling.

I went and parked in the back of the lot, where there were spaces. As I walked toward the store, I could see that the Audi had its flashers on, and I almost knew for sure. Despite being on a tight timeframe, I veered to the left and took a look.

No handicap sticker. No handicap plate. Nothing. Just the flashers.

I walked into the store, wondering if I should talk to the manager. I decided that the manager was really not in a position to be able to do anything about the able-bodied person who decided to park in the handicap spot.

I picked up a basket. I thought about all the people I know that have a legitimate need for that spot. I thought about what happens when those folks can't access a spot because someone who's "only going inside for a minute" takes them.

And I just couldn't let it go.

I looked around, and the car was still there. Not knowing who the owner was, and despite my own tight timeframe, I looked through my purse, found a notebook, and, on 4 x 6 paper, wrote: "Flashers to not give you permission to park here." I walked back out of the store, put my basket on the hood of the car, and stuck my note under the windshield wiper. I made sure it was obvious to anyone getting in the car that it was there.

You know what? I hope it ruined that guy's day. I hope he (and I am almost completely positive it was a he, although my memory is in fact vague on the subject because I only briefly saw the driver behind tinted glass.) got mad. I hope he was embarrassed. I hope his mood was ruined for good or bad reasons and even if he was just mad that I left him a note, I hope he was forced to stop feeling good for a moment.

Don't park in the handicap spot if you don't have a real need for it. If you have a body that works in typical fashion, stay out of the spot and consider yourself lucky that you have a body that will carry you the several additional feet from parking lot to store. Be glad you don't have to maneuver a wheelchair, cane, walker, or other assistance device to get around. And stay out of the terribly few spots reserved for people who ended up in a different physical condition than you did.

And be glad that I didn't have more time, because I surely could get behind an act like this one:

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