For those of you, who religiously follow this blog (Mom, Baby A, EMad and someone in Nova Scotia) you know that I have written many times about being unable to confront conflict.* My mom has informed many times, with a unhelpful shrug, that it's part of my genetic make-up to fear confrontations and arguments. I, for fear of upsetting my mom, accepted this hereditary disorder, and since I can remember, have been apologizing for things I never did.
Then one day I met and married Dr. Phil (name has been changed to protect the privacy of my husband). Through the past three years, Dr. Phil has been pushing me to break out of my passive state and fight back. I'm not going to lie - there's been some dark moments. There was the time I was severely cut off on the 405 and I didn't even attempt to honk. And then, we were at dinner and the waitress forgot about my order and I ended up apologizing for bothering her. It makes me shudder to think of those times.
However, today I think I would have earned a bright star in Dr. Phil's file. While riding home, (IN THE FREAKING BIKE LANE), after work I was almost run over by a chick in a Porsche. Now, the old Kate would have mumbled something under her breath like, "Geezz lady," and then continued home. But, not this new and improved Kate. First, I gave her the universal, "What the crap is your problem?" by lifting my arms in the air. She then responded, with her own hands in the air...and then it was on.
As we got to the intersection, she rolled down her window and screamed at me for erratically riding my bike. Oh, the test was on and she just raised the stakes. I then responded with, "Lady! (big step up from 'Excuse Miss') Are you insane? (Yeah, I went to a straight mental health reference) I was in the freaking bike lane. Learn to drive." (Okay, at this point I'll admit I was starting to get a little worried that I had insulted her. I mean, maybe she never learned how to drive and maybe her family was too poor to own a car, and therefore, she never learned the proper rules of the road. I didn't know her full story.) Fortunately, as I was about to offer a free car wash, she responded with, "YOU are the crazy one and I don't even see a bike lane!" This is when I heard Dr. Phil's voice (kind of like Yoda in Star Wars ) and said, "Are you really going with that argument? (I'm buying time) Seriously? (still buying time) (Okay, time for the zing) Lady, if you follow my hand I'll show you where the good workers of Santa Monica painted in the freaking bike lane. Oh look, there's a little stick figure of a bike so everyone, including you, will know it's indeed a FREAKIN' BIKE LANE!!" And as she drove off, I screamed, "You are crazy. Learn to drive!"
I have to admit it felt good. And I even received a round of applause from a fellow biker behind me. Actually, he might have been clapping to break my deranged moment of rage. Anyway...
* Or I'm a classic elementary school playground winnie.