Yesterday Troy and I took advantage of the amazing weather to get out and take a long ride on our bicycles. We packed up some water, a few granola bars and a frisbee, slathered on some sunscreen and hit to the trails. We left about 3:30 in the afternoon and traveled about 10 miles up the Monon Trail, which is a wonderful biking/walking/blading/running footpath through the city.
They've really done quite a bit of work to make the path beautiful. Some parts of it go through some questionable neighborhoods that are more industrial than residential. The city (or private groups) has taken it upon themselves to have local artists paint murals on the backs of some of those buildings that face the path. Some of them are just really well done and it was great to get to experience them as we rode by. At one point we even stopped at a little park to enjoy some water and a granola bar. We even tossed around the frisbee for a bit (so sorry about putting it on top of that port-a-potty, Troy).
We finally decided to head back around 5:15. We thought that since it was such a lovely day, we would just stop by the store and grab a few things for dinner. We'd had such a good time and just marveled that we are so lucky to be able to have bodies (and bikes) that carried us through the day so well and to have Troy's house in such close proximity to all of these activities.
It wasn't until we were nearing the store that all of this bliss was interrupted. As I rode along the rode, a white SUV with 4 20-something males in it decided to be (excuse my french) jackasses! One of them stuck his head out of the car and made one, loud, blood-curdling shout/bark/noise, which startled me. I assume that was his intent. Then, as he passed Troy, he did it again. Of course, by then, Troy had heard the first one and wasn't startled.
This kind of thing just pisses me off! What the hell would possess someone to do such a thing? Essentially, he was invading my (and Troy's) personal air space with the intent of causing mental anguish. This is the point when my blood starts to boil. Too many times in my life has this happened. For some reason, these people (those who think themselves funny by being dicks) decide that they can say/yell/gesture something at me without any recourse. I tend to disagree. I've had enough and I'm not taking it anymore. My solution? Confront them. Yes, I admit that I am a 30-something, overweight, white woman, but I will certainly do what I can to inflict my wrath upon them. I'm certain that at some point this will be the end of me. One of these pricks will pull out a gun or knife or something. Luckily, for now, I have the element of surprise on my side. They don't expect me to say anything, so when I do, in some ways, they are simply shocked.
So, yesterday I did just that. When they had to stop at a light, I rolled up next to their car (the windows were all down, of course). I overheard to the one who had made the noise say, "Ooh, he's so pissed." (He was referring to Troy who had flicked him off and was ahead of me at that point.) I pulled up to him, and simply said, "What are you doing?" He said, "What do you mean?" and barked/yelled right in my face again. (DICK!) I said, "What is wrong with you? What makes you think you can do that and get away with it?" At that point, he said, "I've got Tourette's, bitch" as they pulled away. My only comeback was, "Well, someone's a bitch." Lame, true, but I felt so angry and I'm REALLY not good at witty comebacks.
So, what's the solution? Seemingly there's no recourse for such horrendous behavior on the part of these punks. If I had reached in and punched/slapped him, I'm certain I'm the one that would have been in trouble. Would any of the occupants of the other cars around have come to my aid? What if I had just maced the whole car? What about carrying a device that would allow me to slit their tire and be on my way? I know that I am supposed to turn the other cheek and I feel like I confronted him calmly and respectfully, but to what avail? He's more than likely still going to act in such an abhorrent way. After all, his friends were chuckling right along with him.
Maybe you've found a solution. I would love to hear your thoughts/insights/suggestions.