Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Aggressive entitlement

Call me sensitive, but running into jerkish strangers who glare you down, take sheepish sideswipes at you, or honk their gas-guzzling sport utility vehicle (alternatively: pseudo-tricked out ricer trash box) horns at you really can sour my mood and ruin my day.

I can only hypothesize that most of these people share one very important trait in common - they think they rule the universe. In their demigodhood, they can do no wrong; and if something did go wrong, then it must be your fault. Thou art the careless, half-wit stranger that has crossed paths with thy ruler - now grovel for forgiveness or meet with a swift barrage of expletives and fist pumping!


Today as I was exiting the subway station, I hurriedly inserted myself into a compartment of the revolving exit behind the previous bloke. As I wedged myself in, the exit abruptly stopped. The man in front of me had caught his bag between the door and the wall. "Oops, I'm stuck," he uttered. I instinctively reached for the door and tried to pull it backwards. No dice. These doors are not designed to rotate backwards - otherwise, you might try to sneak in without paying your fare simply by running the exit in reverse. Luckily, a few tugs dislodged the offending accessory and we began spinning our way to freedom once more.

As we emerged on the other side, the man in front turned around and muttered in vaguely accented English, "Whoa man, you're trying to kill me." Clearly, he was blaming me for his own careless conundrum - i.e. being stuck and not being able to reverse the door. Wait, do you think I was pushing the door closed? For what - in order to trap you and your bag... because I have some irrational desire to remain trapped between the interior and exterior of the station with you? You can't learn from mistakes you blame others for, you clumsy twat.


Because I'm such a vindictive bastard (I'm working on it, I swear...), this brief, one-sided dispute reminded me of another such blame game in which I was recently caught up at a local Roots store. While waiting for Evey to shop around, I sat myself down at the edge of a table displaying a variety of wearables, my feet hanging into the aisle.

Along came a large fellow, with two rowdy children and a piece of luggage in tow. It was a typical travel piece with two wheels, dragging behind Mister Dad by a handle. "Excuse me," the man said gruffly. I stood up to let the little troupe pass by. As the man went by, his two little terrors skipped and leapt around, tripping on the suitcase and causing it to tumble over onto its side.

Immediately, the man turned around, with an audible "humph" and a flash of anger in his eyes. I watched as his hand snaked out, ready to push me away for having the gall to obstruct the path of his most sacred of travel pieces. Inches away, he recognized the offenders were in fact his own pair of boys, disengaged, turned around, and hurried on his way with an indignant growl. There was nary an acknowledgement of his near-miss encounter.

Thanks for ruining my day, jerk.


Mello said...

you gotta cheer up!
Although I can see how his unpleasant-ness can erk you. I find though, that in situations like this, if you smile in an "i'm cute and innocent clueless" way and say sorry, they usually soften up... a lot! =) and then both parties are less upset!

Sandlot said...

I think that the above suggestion probably only applies to when females do it. Although, i suppose you could try.

Did you end up saying anything to the guy in the revolving door situation?

brutalturtle.blogspot.com said...

I spoke to you about this before, about random people who always have to leave a little comment like they know what's best even if I did nothing wrong when something happens. You just shrug and give me no response. "how do you deal with people like that?" "I just don't." So just don't, ignore it.

I think that the above suggestion would be best suitable, and the above above suggestion would not be suitable. I suppose you could try:

-I didn't push the door.
-Oops I didn't succeed!
-Be more careful next time.

a_ndy said...

Nope, I just continued on my way. I'm usually not clever enough on a whim to spit out a snappy comeback to strangers. That's probably for the best.