Heads-up, people. Seatbelts on. Look both ways. I just witnessed three incidents of vehicular mayem in my 20 minute walk home, and one of them was me, so something is off-kilter.
So I’m a few blocks up Dawson Street from my office, and I am on the sidewalk where cars are exiting from the parking deck. There is a giant SUV angled 45 degrees towards me. Before I step in front of him, I look carefully at the driver to make sure he sees me, and is not craning his head in the other direction looking for a gap in traffic. He sees me. I make it a step and a half in front of him before there is a gap in traffic, at which point he forgets I’m there, cranes his head in the other direction, and guns it.
Thank heavens I was a step and a half in front of him, and not fully two steps in front of him, because I had enough room to push off his car and reel around backwards and step back mostly on the curb. My giant Janis Joplin bag swung around and slammed into his car. I don’t even know what one is supposed to do at this point; he waves me across, and his girlfriend makes a terrified “O!” shape with her mouth, and I raise my arms to say “WTF?” but I do not say “WTF,” and I keep walking, and he pulls away. He did not run over my foot, and nothing is amiss except for a red mark where I had to push off his hood with my forearm. It’s not even as bad as a carpet burn. More like if you took off a scratchy wool sweater too fast. But STILL.
At this point I would like to make the following observations:
1) Dude. WTF?
2) Dude’s girlfriend: I’d reconsider your choice.
3) Let’s give SUV driver the benefit of the doubt and say he was trying to get out of the way of the other cars exiting the deck. And that maybe he did not hear my bag slam into the car and wonder whether that sound was me being hit by his car. Wouldn’t you though, if you were the driver in a collision between an SUV and a pedestrian, check on the pedestrian? Doesn’t hitting someone with your car at least merit rolling down your window and asking, “Are you ok?” Maybe throw in an apology, such as “I’m sorry I hit you with my giant SUV?” Failing that, wouldn’t you feel bad enough about the incident that you at least circled the block to follow up?
4) I would never hurl an insult such as “fucking douche canoe” at someone, because I’d find that to be vulgar and a little nonsensical. However, it’s my favorite insult from The Bloggess, and I am not feeling very creative at this moment, and I think we should use it as a placeholder until I come up with something more appropriate for the gentleman who hit me with his F.D.C. SUV.*
I am indignant, but unharmed. I got all the way up to Blount and Edenton, when I saw a young man crossing Edenton. Another pedestrian in the crosswalk. There is a car across the street on the other side whose driver is leaning out the window talking to a friend on the sidewalk. She finishes her conversation, and then guns her way through the intersection. She swerves to avoid pedestrian in the crosswalk, not having realized she didn’t still have a green light.
As luck would have it, pedestrian lands safely on my corner of the sidewalk. He is unfazed by his near-miss. He flashes me a giant smile and says hello. Turns out he is twenty-five-year-old Derek Jeter. No kidding. Thank you universe. I appreciate your throwing me a bone, after the wool-sweater-scuffed looking place on my wrist.
As Derek Jeter dazzles me with the I-just-hit-a-home-run smile, I watch a white van, which I suspect is full of mobsters fleeing a crime scene, barreling down Blount Street swerve for no reason halfway into the other lane. Horns blaring. Cars swerving. Brakes squealing. Nobody is hurt. Thank heavens.
I am not leaving my couch this evening. Y’all be careful out there.