Excuse me, but that was my parking spot. My signal was on. No, you were not there first. You cut me off. Look at where my car is! You cut me off. I am not raising my voice. You are yelling at me. You are. Listen– I said, listen: do we have a fucking problem?
I said, do we have a fucking problem? Are you fucking with me? Because if you are, I swear to God that, with ZERO hesitation, I will absolutely let you do that.
Go ahead, take my spot. Knock yourself out. But mock my haircut? Scratch my car with your keys? Insult my ethnic-slash-religious heritage, right here, in front of my oldest child, or FUCK with me in some other way? Yeah, go ahead and do all those things, as soon as you’re ready. And during the drive home I’ll cry big sloppy tears, the kind that make my eight-year-old wonder if daddy is OK. Capiche?
Bro. Bro. Are you trying to step to me, bro? Because, I promise, you won’t regret it. My face is so goddamn punchable, you’re going to have a lovely time punching it, bro. It’ll bring you lasting pleasure, it’ll be a fond memory you’ll carry for life, bro.
If you want to start something, I am ready. Like last week at the airport, the airline messed up my stuff, so what I did? First, went up to the desk, nice and calm, and pointed out that my suitcase got sent to Detroit. Also, that the baggage handlers had snapped an arm off our stroller. And when the lady said, with a shit-eating grin, that she was SO sorry and it’s TOO bad because the airline can do whatever THEY want to a person’s luggage since it’s THEIR airplane I was in, and shouldn’t I be looking a bit more grateful? Motherfucker, I apologized to HER with SINCERITY and I even did an embarrassing little BOW that I was ASHAMED of for WEEKS. Then I walked away very quickly, almost a TROT, and apologized to my WIFE for being INEFFECTUAL.
Oh, you’re laughing? Like I’m some sort of clown? Should I put on makeup and a rubber nose? Do a little jig? Or you want I should spin? Just the jig is good? Maybe also sing some jig song? Yeah, you like that, don’t you? Well keep laughing, buddy, because I feed off that positive energy.
But the good times won’t last forever. Better kick me while I’m a stationary target and pointing to the spot that’ll hurt me the most i.e. my “Achilles heel,” which for me is the side of the head. Kick it, now. Because, sooner or later, you’re going to start feeling bad for me. And that’s when the fun really starts.
You’ll see. You’ll be spending the cash you took from my wallet, remembering your clever barbs, icing your knuckles, when out of nowhere it’ll hit you like a punch to my face: the guy from the parking lot? He was just a pathetic idiot. And you’ll think of what you’ve done to me, that pathetic idiot, and you’ll feel terrible. Like you took candy from a baby, except in this case it was a man in a parking lot whose trench coat was stuffed with lollipops.
No way around it, you’re gonna feel awful, and each day your guilt will grow, expanding like a balloon, pressing up against the inside of your skull, until it becomes unbearable. Then, just to relieve that pressure, you’ll come to my door, hat in hand, and you’ll say, Michael, I’m sorry about all that stuff I did, and I’d like to return your hat.
I’ll invite you in, and offer you a drink. We’ll laugh about old times, the parking lot, and trivialities of the past. You’ll tell me how nice this has been, to catch up and clear the air, and you’ll ask to use my bathroom once more before hitting the road.
And that, when you’re least expect it, will be my moment. Because buddy, I’ll be waiting there for you on my knees, completely helpless, ready to take one last kick.