I’m fighting with the crossing guard outside my apartment.
There are several schools in my neighborhood and there are some lovely folks that have taken it upon themselves to don a neon yellow jacket and help coax cars into stopping and children into narrowly escaping with their lives. I love that they do it; I’m sure if I had a child, I’d feel much better about knowing that someone would aid them on their journeys.
After all, children are often too stupid to effectively cross the road.
But I’d like to think that they’re only there for the children. They should completely ignore anyone who approaches them and is of their same stature. Let’s go with a general rule: if I’m as tall as you, I can handle crossing the road as well as you.
But the other day when I got to the end of my road, the bus was stopped and already loading on the corporate oafs. I was running ever so slightly behind and though I had neither the assistance of the pedestrian walk signal or the help of the yellow jacketed lady friend, I chose to cross the road. Just as I ran across to catch the bus before it closed its doors and carried on, she yelled at me to not cross and stay where I was. I, on the other hand, acknowledged that her jacket does not imbue her with the power to make me late for work. I acknowledged that I was just as tall as she and capable of making this decision on my own.
And so I crossed.
I chose to cross because I looked both ways, saw I could get across, and I freaking needed to get to work. I crossed because I’m an adult and if I make a decision to travel 30 feet from where I’m already standing, I feel confident that I have assessed the situation for safety and am carrying on with all my best interests accounted for.
This made Yellow Jacket incredibly upset.
Having run across with little regard for the words coming out of her face, I made it to the other side and she decided to take out the bulk of her wrath on the poor turtle-like girl that was behind me and trying to follow my lead.
She stayed where she was. Because she was a poor turtle-like girl and had not the spine for confrontation.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the street, the bus had reached capacity and the driver closed the door before I could join the public transit party – leaving me on the sidewalk next to Yellow Jacket.
In situations like this, I tend to just stare at the ground and craft a dialogue in my head for my own amusement. If you don’t look at someone, they can’t give you the stink eye. Yellow Jacket seemed like she could rock a nasty stink eye. So I stood and stared as Turtle Girl finally filed in behind me and together we waited, both feeling a bit like we’d been scolded on the playground.
I’m thinking about buying a yellow jacket and competing with Yellow Jacket for that intersection. I don’t now how crossing guard assignments work, but I can only imagine it will be an enjoyable altercation to be had. She can make people follow the rules of crossing the street and I can try to talk people into freedom and liberty. You know, if they’re regular-sized. Pint-sized people follow the proper procedures. I should get a cool crossing guard name.
Suggestions are welcome. ♣