Sunday, September 26, 2010

Party Poopers

A recent Saturday started out well.  Despite me, my wife and two of my kids battling various stages of allergies/flu/sinus infections we decided to go out for breakfast.

"Started out well" is a relative term.  When dining out with the shorties, "well" is a meal that involves any combination of the following:

- Less than 5 utensils thrown on the floor
- Less than 5 sugar packets, crackers or liquid creamer packets broken or spilled on the table
- No vomit, gas or body malfunctions
- Two complete sentences spoken by an adult without interjecting (pleading?) a child's name

So yes, while the meal went well, it was the drive that went strange.  As we approached a construction zone outside a mall, I came to a stop along with the other cars while two cars waited to turn through our lane. 

In one car a man blared away on his horn.  Mind you, none of us were moving until the distant light changed.

There was nowhere to go, but this guy clearly had brain surgery to conduct at Starbucks and did not let up.  As the light changed and he drove by, we all got to hear his expletive filled tirade, which he screamed out the window while on a cell phone. 

Tough to explain that one to the kids, huh?  No need.  Just one angry dude.  It would have, however, been quite the teachable (YouTube) moment if we had watched an enraged, distracted driver plow into another car or a construction horse. 

On another recent afternoon, I was walking the dog while pushing my three year-old in her stroller.  The hound took a pit stop and I picked it up and placed it into a sealed plastic bag.  We had a good ways to go and as I came across a garbage can at the curb I tossed the bag inside.

Bad idea. 

I heard a man yell from behind.  Maybe six feet tall, a cut off t-shirt and lunch pail.  Apparently it was his house and he was upset that I used his garbage can.  "I hate when people do that," he yelled.  I said I was just being a good neighbor by picking it up and had a ways to go.  Then he, ahem, put down his lunch pail and approached as if willing to start a fist fight.  Over a bag of poop.  In front of my daughter.  I stood there, he backed off, and we continued on our walk. 

I thought about it again after reading the "Poop Rage"  story below:

So my question in all three cases is:  What gives? 
What on earth is going on in someones life that they become so enraged over something so trivial? 

It's a reminder to me, to us, that we are all vulnerable.  None of us know what lives in the minds and hearts of others.  Looking into the eyes of both men was sad, not scary. 

The scary part is what we don't see. What happens next.


  1. We live in angry times. Philosophy works when times are good. Fear dominates when teh perception of money or welfare is scarce.
    Edward Lack

  2. I like that Ed, though I wonder if the situation would have been different if I had bumped into these guys in "good times" .

    My guess is that they both have some deep emotional issues, good times or bad.