Driving in the city is a totally different experience. Parallel parking into spots one inch larger than your car, squeezing past double-parked delivery trucks, people darting between cars to cross in the middle of the street, merging across 3 lanes, construction, potholes the size of an elephant, you name it. You can’t be afraid to bull your way in there, sometimes using your car as a shield, sometimes using it as a weapon.
This is a long way to say that I put a 2 foot gouge in the side of my 1 year old car the other day. It was not pretty, my friends. I never really saw exactly what happened; all I know is I was late for ballet, there was a truck with its flashers on and traffic coming the other way, and I thought I could fit through. Ollie said there was a piece of metal sticking out on the side. It smashed my mirror (not broken!) and put a deep scratch across both doors.
A day in the life.
My point is, if you live in the city, you have to expect that your car is going to get a little dinged up. I don’t know how many times I’ve come back to find a ding in my door and no one around.
Whaddya gonna do?
So Sara was getting out of a tight parking spot the other day, and she maybe kinda-sorta backed up until she nudged the guy behind her. She was creeping backward, watching in the rearview, so it wasn’t a hit, more of a…gentle rocking. Let’s be honest, you’ve done it, I’ve done it.
Except this time, it turns out the guy was sitting in his car.
Super embarrassing. Sara could see the guy freaking out, gesturing wildly and yelling. So what are you going to do in that situation? You know there’s no mark on the cars, but you have to get out and look. Give your insurance information if he wants it, after all, you did technically hit his car.
So Sara gets out of the car, with this maniac still gesturing. “Is it all right?” she asked. “Oh,” said the man, poking his head out of the door. “I…thought you were a guy.”
Sara looked at him, and then they both got back in their cars. Sara proceeded to go back and forth until she was out of the spot, and then drove away.
So, what exactly does that mean?
What was this guy thinking? Is it okay to yell at guys, but not at girls? I mean, she’ll take it, because she didn’t want some dude screaming at her, but maybe you shouldn’t be screaming at anybody, you know? Is escalating a little, harmless bump into a fistfight on the street just bros being bros, but women are too fragile to take it? Or is it just okay for a woman to be a bad driver?
More importantly, if he’s so concerned about his car, and he’s sitting in his car watching this person going back and forth, back and forth, trying to get out of the spot, and he’s the last car in the row, why not just, you know, turn on the car and back up a foot or two?
I guess some guys are just spoiling for a fight.
But only with dudes.
See, this is why I like having a 2 foot long gash on the side of my car. If someone’s trying to merge in and I’m not letting them, or if *I’m* trying to merge in and they’re not letting *me*, I just lock eyes, nod towards the scratch, and they move out of my way. “I’m coming over,” says my scratch, and, “You should see the other guy.” And, “If you don’t want to get hit, turn your car on and back up. I don’t give a f@^k.”
I need my car to say that, because I’m far, far too much of a pansy to say it myself.