Now wait! Hold on. I know. I know! By definition, road rage happens on wheels. Just hear me out…because it can’t really happen when your wheels are on wheels…honestly this will make sense.
Driving home from work last week, the last stretch on the way is Black Creek Drive. It’s a strange roadway in the city’s west end, running south from the 401, a mini highway, with a slightly higher speed limit and very stop lights. Near the base of it you pass by a grocery store on one side and a new community centre on the other with an oddly placed stop light. The light isn’t too far north of the last light on that highway and the timing of those lights causes all kinds of issues with traffic in the afternoons. Most often, it leads to people being stuck in the middle of the intersection on red lights. That shouldn’t happen, of course, as we all know that rule of the road don’t we? Don’t enter the intersection unless you can clear it.
So on this night I get stuck right at that intersection, light glowing green, but no way I can be sure I won’t get stuck in the middle of it if traffic doesn’t move. So, I’m a good driver and I wait. As I do, looking in my rear view, I notice the car behind me is creeping over to my right, trying to find just enough room to get into the right turn lane to head into the grocery store…or so I think. As I creep forward just enough, noticing that I now have enough room to head through the light, the asshat guns into the turn lane, through the intersection and swerves around me from my passenger side to slide in front of me.
He got one car ahead.
I slam on my horn, swearing a blue streak as I am stuck behind him for minutes as traffic stops once more. I can see him actually duck his head down, no way to even see his eyes in the mirror. I am so pissed that all I want to do, as our cars sit there, not moving, is get out of my car, jog over and slam at his window asking what he was thinking to get one damn car length ahead…when I stop honking and start laughing.
Let’s be honest, I was raging. I wanted to rage on the guy. That being said, anyone who know me knows full well I’d never have done it. It takes a lot to get my temper to the point that I’d do something that stupid…but that wasn’t why I was laughing. I was laughing because of my wheels within my wheels. Can you imagine, me in a fit of rage, trying to get out of my car, unload my chair, transfer to my chair and then roll up to this guys window? All in live traffic? By the time I got the chair out, the light would have changed and he’d have driven away, looking in his review mirror at the crazy guy in the chair chasing him down the hill while his car was left blocking traffic. Imagine how well that would have gone.
So I honked a few more times and when he made his right hand turn at the end of Black Creek, with me continuing straight on, I gave him the finger…knowing full well he probably never saw it. When I did get to the front of my house, I did do an experiment. One that I’m embarrassed I’ve never run before. I timed myself. Just how long does it take to get out of my car? So car in park, stop watch on phone started…and the process began.
Total time? 2 minutes and 49 seconds. That’s from the door opening, transfer board folded out, pulling my legs free, opening the sliding door, holding it in place with a cane while the lift extends the chair out, pulling the chair away, retracting the lift, turning the chair around, locking up the brakes, finally turning the car off, then hoisting myself into the chair, getting my legs back in place before finally closing both door. Almost 3 minutes to do that under ideal circumstances, where my legs didn’t scream at me from being pretzels for too long, and I made the transfer with no sliding of the chair in the snow. If any of that happens, you can add another minute to the process. Now…try that when pissed off with the stress of being in live traffic?
Ya. Right. So much like not being able to zombie walk (roll) with a cell phone, road raging out of my car is virtually impossible. Which in the end…is a good thing. Though I suppose if I was REALLY raging I could have just rammed him…but that would have been nuts! Wait…isn’t that what road rage is?