The Benefits Of Driving A Jalopy

It’s only a ten minute walk to the local Whole Foods. But for whatever reason, the mid-day heat, the possibility of buying a lot of food, we drove into the cramped parking lot.

South Florida has the worst drivers in America. This was fully represented by the cross section of incompetent and inconsiderate drivers in this lot. Dodging jerks on their cell phones I pulled into a spot. Before we could get out of the car some schmuck getting into the car parked in the next space opened his door right into my Ford Explorer’s passenger side front door. He made a face like “Oh shit.” but did not apologize or make any gesture towards me even though he saw us in the car.

I figured there was no damage but as we got out my Love Interest noticed a nice block of paint chipped off the door where he hit it. Now my car is from 1999. There are several scratches and dings (many of which I am certain come from the keys of unruly teenagers I sent to the principal when I was a teacher). I saw the offender’s pristine Silver Audi was still held up trying to get out of the parking lot.

I know confronting him was perhaps not the smartest move, but one of my flaws is I can not take disrespect. I ran up to him and said “Hey man, you chipped the paint off my door.”

He was a stylish Eurotrashy guy. He apologized and motioned like he was going to get out of the car to see the damage. In this split second I realized nothing would come out of this. He’d see one scratch which he already saw on a canvas with a dozen other scratches. So I told him, “Forget about it. Just be careful next time.”

As I walked into the store my Love Interest asked, “What happened?”

“Nothing. I don’t know what I was expecting from him. I guess just an acknowledgement that he did wrong.”

“Yeah right, you were hoping he’d pay for our groceries.”

“That would have been an apt punishment.”

Somewhere between getting the rice milk and the granola my animosity faded. With our food bagged my Love Interest started laughing when she remembered my first words upon returning from confronting the buffoon were, “What an asswipe.”

“He was.” I said. “What kind of a classless guy damages someone else’s stuff without taking responsibility for it? We loaded the bags in my car. Then I opened the door to get in the car. I swung the door a little wide and it banged into the black Mercedes next to me. I did a quick look around and got the hell out of Dodge.

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