Thursday, June 19, 2014

Road Rage and the Miscreants of Society


A woman stands at the Pearly Gates, getting her interview with St. Peter. It goes something like this:

St. Peter: I see you wasted a lot of your life cursing random strangers.

Woman: What do you mean?

St. Peter looks at a rather long scroll. He skips about ten feet of dense writing to find the spot he's looking for.

St. Peter: Well, here's one instance where you pulled alongside a stranger as you exited the freeway and took the time to flip him off, to profane God's name in the process, and to use His name in a sentence with a long list of rather dubious Anglo Saxon terms for bodily activities.

Woman: If I did that, the other driver deserved it.

St. Peter raises his eyebrows, pointedly staring at the woman.

St. Peter: And just what did this total stranger do to be the object of your wrath and blasphemy?

Woman: He was in front of me and I was in a hurry.

St. Peter: Ah! I see. You behaved like a miscreant monkey because the other driver was in front of you.

Woman: He was going too slowly, and I was in a hurry to get home.

St. Peter: How fast was he going?

Woman: It was too slow.

St. Peter: Let me look up his speed, just for the record....Oh! Tsk Tsk! My records show that he was going well over the speed limit. I must have a talk with him about that when he arrives. So you say he was going too slowly, yet he was actually speeding?

Woman: I don't know about that. He was going too slowly and I was in a hurry to get home, you see, and he was in front of me....In my way.

St. Peter: Hmmm. The record also shows that he was in the slow lane. Was there a lot of traffic so you couldn't go around him?

Woman: I don't recall. He was in front of me.

St. Peter: So, you couldn't have gone around him.

Woman: He was in front of me as we got off the freeway at the same off ramp.

St. Peter: As I recall, that particular off ramp is two lanes wide and opens up to four lanes.

Woman: That's how I finally got around him.

St. Peter: Oh, but you didn't go around him. The record shows that you pulled up alongside him, blocking traffic along the way, and waited for him to look at you. When he did, you performed those distasteful acts that I've already mentioned. I ask again, what did this total stranger do that made you behave so badly?

Woman: He. Was. In. Front. Of. Me.

St. Peter: I see,...and how did he react to your outburst?

Woman: That was the most infuriating thing of all! He didn't.

St. Peter: Didn't what?

Woman: React.

St. Peter: He didn't react?

Woman: Not at all. He just looked at me, then turned and drove into the far turn lane as if nothing happened.

St. Peter: Well, we've certainly established what sort of person you become when you feel you've been inconvenienced. Now let's take a look at how you treated your family....

*****

What's the lesson to be learned here? What I took away from this incident, as I was the stranger in the other car, is that we've become so debased in our modern society that we've forgotten the social mores of courtesy, decency, proper behavior, and good-old-fashioned kindness.

I find it sad that miscreants rule society, as if there were no better way to act and react to others. I guess I shouldn't be surprised when people behave badly, but somehow through it all, I hope that people will indeed behave as humans, and not as animals.

I also feel nothing but pity for the woman who became ugly, oh so ugly, as she gave in to her basest feelings. She let her passions and her anger rule her, and probably blames me for "making" her feel angry. I can only hope that she treats her family and friends better than she treats complete strangers.