I had a bike wreck of sorts this morning. I'm fine, nary a scratch.
But, boy did my blood boil!
I was on my way to work, turning left using my left turn signal like a good cyclist should. There were cars at the stop signs on either side of the street I was turning towards. I looked at them and saw that they saw me. But the white car on the right side of the street slowly pulled out nonetheless, into the intersection and towards me.
Again, I saw that she saw me but slowed down some anyway, not sure what she was doing. She kept coming forward until I finally over-braked, lost control and fell down.
And then, from the street, I yelled, oh, did I yell. I cursed at this person in the white car, who did finally stop. Then I stood up after issuing my especially harsh curse to see that it was a tiny girl, maybe 18 years old, sitting behind the wheel with a fearful, “are you okay-I'm sorry” look upon her face.
I wanted to be furious, there have been several bad bike-car collisions in Louisville lately. One death. Serious life and death situations.
But I found myself feeling sheepish instead. I grunted an apology for cursing at this poor overwhelmed child and waved her on while I picked up my bicycle.
You know, I didn't used to cuss. When I was a child, I was raised to believe that it was just wrong. Any curse word. God did not want me to do it and I wouldn't have thought of it. Would have been embarrassed just to try to say one out loud.
Then, probably in my thirties, I came to realize they're just words, albeit pretty impolite ones. The bible holds no ban on “bad” words. Still, I didn't employ them myself.
I think it all changed with the Bush administration (you knew I had to fit him back in to a post sooner or later). So much behavior of the past few years has just plain deserved a good cursin' and, God help me, I have.
But never around a child and certainly never at a child.
And so, to some young person out there who I'll never have the opportunity to address, I'd nonetheless like to say, I'm sorry.
But be careful out there.