Do unto others

I like to think I am mellowing, like a mature cheese. Well, maybe an extra mature cheese.

Turns out there are still things that make my blood boil.

What drives me crazy, and always has, is the fact that some people go about their daily, business with, it seems, complete disregard for others. Rules and conventions are for others. They can please themselves.

I could fill the ether with examples of behaviour that has annoyed, no, incensed me, but it would elevate my blood pressure. Examples of inconsiderate behaviour range from the minor to the breathtakingly major, but all have the ability to wind me up.

One of my biggest bugbears is around parking in public car parks. Hardly earth shattering, I acknowledge, but boy does it send me into one. Just today, for example, on a visit to the supermarket, I find the car park is completely full. Bit annoying but I’ll play car ring-a-ring-a-roses and drive around the car park until a space comes free. Turnover is usually fairly swift and it shouldn’t be too long before I can park.

Now, there is a one-way system around this car park. I can see it’s there for a reason. If everyone drove whichever way they wanted, it would be mayhem and there would be a lot of squashed metal. Of course, it’s annoying when a space you have just passed comes free and someone else cruises straight into that space, without delay. The temptation to reverse into the space is strong, but in your driving mirror, you see another car coming up behind and you know, the space is really theirs. When that happens, I curse a bit, but I am the person who always finds the slowest queue, so I kind of accept this sort of thing as my fate.

Anyway, this morning, I am driving around and around and starting to feel vertiginous,  when man in large black car enters the car park, drives the wrong way and straight into a space which has come free ahead of me. There is no-one else in front of me. That is my space, with my name on it. I apply some pressure to my car horn, turn the air in my car blue with my descriptions of this other driver, but the a*** in the black car does that studious ignoring thing and completely disregards me. Worse than that, he emerges from his car with a smug and happy expression on his face, as if he has just had tea with the vicar.

Many is the time this has happened to me and I never get any better at absorbing it into my day. As before, I felt myself harbouring quite murderous intent towards black car man and, as often happens, after the event, I expended a lot of time and mental energy on clever and cutting, but imaginary conversations, which would have reduced black car man to a quivering wreck. Physical violence was contemplated. The incident occurred this morning and I’m still only in Act 1 of my imaginary drama. This may say more about me than the a*** in the black car, but my point is that he got his space because I and others were following the rules of the car park. Why should the rule breaker benefit from a rules system, which he/she disregards, at the expense of those who obey those rules?

Do rule breakers always get away with it and sail through life unimpeded and always out in front? Sure as hell feels that way to me. What do you think? With my rational head on (my what?), I tell myself that 2 wrongs don’t make a right and it won’t help society if, in future, I career across car parks to snap up any space that comes free, tempting as that is. I believe in order and the rule of law. The opposite appalls and scares me.

Thank goodness for the numbers of people who do obey rules and have respect for their fellow citizens. They shall inherit the earth, or, at least, get a car park space eventually. I still have smoke coming out of my ears, from the morning incident, which I feel may only be extinguished by a g and t with lots of ice 🙂 It’s Friday, the sun’s nearly over the yardarm. Chin! Chin! Have a great weekend.

cars parked outside on concrete road
Photo by Rangga Aditya Armien on