Today, Leo and I went to Librairie Champlain to pick up some French-language books for me to read to him. We took the Gardiner Expressway, which turned out to be a poor choice, because it was stop-and-go. But it was a bizarre traffic pattern; it would flow almost smoothly one minute, and come to a sudden stop the next.

I was in the left lane, and saw an opening in the center lane. The car ahead of me went first. I checked my blind spot and saw a black Town Car coming up, but there was still space. Before I could gauge his speed, though, I realized that traffic ahead of me had nearly stopped, and I no longer had the option to stay in my lane, since I had sped up to match the center lane’s pace, and had used up the space the car ahead of me had vacated.

I swerved into the center lane in order to avoid the car ahead of me. Not my favorite kind of maneuver, but there was no major drama. The Lincoln had to slow for me, though. He swerved a bit too; I guess he had been speeding up to fill the gap in his lane. The horn honked.

Now, I’ve been in that guy’s spot before, having to avoid someone who changes lanes ahead of me, with little room to spare. If I’m especially indignant, I’ll lean on the horn a bit to let them know I’m there. The tables were turned this time, and I was the one who had “cut off” someone else. I like to think of myself as a good and courteous driver, so I felt ashamed.

The Lincoln turned out to be a stretched limo, as I noted when he passed me in the right lane. I was embarrassed, so I didn’t look at the driver. But then I realized he had his window open and was gesticulating wildly out of it. I watched this for a few seconds, and raised my hands briefly in the universal symbol of: “What was I supposed to do?”

His hand went from flipping me the bird to a raised thumb, which I interpreted generously as a sarcastic “Way to go, loser.” I responded with a thumb up of my own: “OK, you’re cool, buddy.”

This didn’t help matters. The bozo got ahead of me and began weaving in and out of my lane. I gave him his space, but he settled back into the right lane. My lane was going faster now, so I pulled ahead again. I looked straight ahead in my best effort to ignore the guy. He still had his window open and I could hear him yelling at me.

He managed to pull up alongside again (we were both really just following the traffic ahead) and I could hear him yelling something about my having a “little baby in the back”. The bonehead continued to yell at me as he passed us. He was holding a cell phone.

I had gone from feeling sheepish to feeling angry. Why the hell wouldn’t this dumbass just let it go? It’s not like I could do anything about what had happened. Stupid people piss me off, and he was clearly demonstrating to me that he was among their numbers. There might have been a time when I would have let myself get sucked into a dangerous game out of sheer indignation and testosterone, but things are different now.

So even though I was coming up with some pretty good ideas to put his witless, pontifical ass back in its place, I had to let it pass. I took a deep breath and found a way to distance our car further from the limo. Dumbass took the next exit.

Which brings me to this blog entry. I may not be in a position to directly react to fools like that limo driver, but I can tell the whole Internet that he can kiss my hairy white ass. 😛