Believe me, you know him. He’s the guy who pulls out of the line of 27 cars who are waiting patiently into the “Right Lane Ends” lane, and then guns it at the light in order to get in front of you. He’s the one who sees the humongous, flashing arrow in the construction zone indicating a closed lane, waits until the last second to merge over, and then screams at you for not letting him in. He’s the one who just bought a $50,000 vehicle that obviously came without turn signals.
Yesterday, he was the jerk who (1) almost hit me when he decided he didn’t need to stop before tearing out of his parking garage, and (2) pulled an illegal (and dangerous) traffic manuever to strip about 0.0083 seconds off his evening commute. Mind you, I was the car immediately behind him at the next stop light. So to him, I say, “Take that, you big bully!” Let me explain this illegal move so that you can be as incensed as I was. I was sitting at the stoplight waiting to turn left. The arrow had expired, so I was waiting for oncoming traffic to pass in order to turn safely. In addition, I work in Downtown Indianapolis where there are these people called pedestrians who like to use the crosswalks in order to make their way from one side of the street to the other. Well, Mr. 95 J 4 didn’t seem to have a grasp on either safety or pedestrian foot traffic, because he pulled up behind me at the light and proceeded to turn left from behind my car, disregarding both the oncoming traffic and the people crossing the street. Obviously, I wasn’t living closely enough to the edge for him, so he felt the need to just skirt on past me, while I waited my turn at the traffic light.
As I relayed the story to my husband, I started getting angry at this man for his blatant omission of any type of traffic civility. I told Marc that I was going to out this guy to everyone who reads my blog. So that’s what I’m doing. Here are the specs on my bad-mannered driving nemesis: (a) He parks in the parking garage located above the bail bonds office just west of Market & Delaware Streets; (b) He is middle-aged and has brown hair [maybe a little wavy]; and (c) He drives a tan Mercedes Benz [go figure] with an Indiana license plate #95 J 4.
At first, I considered this a PSA for anyone driving in the vicinity. The more this weighs on me, though, the more I realize that my reaction to the situation had less to do with how awfully this man drove and much more to do with what his driving reflected to me. You see, whenever I see someone act like Mr. 95 J 4 did yesterday, the more alarmed I get by the undeniable increase I’ve seen in the “Me First” attitude of people. Maybe I’m being delusional, or maybe I’m getting more cynical as I get older. It seems to me that, generally speaking, people just don’t seem to have as much care or concern for others anymore. I think about small things, like holding the door for someone; and bigger things, like driving a fuel-economy car instead of a Hummer. I realize that, while these things seem like common sense to me and to most of the people I call my friends, they just don’t register with others. And I guess more than anything else, that makes me sad.
So here’s to you, Mr. 95 J 4! Congratulations on the picture perfect execution of your illegal traffic maneuver. Sure, you may have nearly wiped out an innocent bystander, but at least you got to the next light…first.