It occurred to me recently that I was becoming “that lady.” The crazy middle-aged lady who does or says whatever comes to mind, whenever it comes to mind, heedless of the consequences.
I was sitting in a line of traffic at a red light a few days ago and I noticed a squirrel running across the sidewalk on the opposite side of the road. I could see a giant SUV roaring down the road, no doubt driven by a tiny piece of sinewy flesh with zero percent body fat rushing to get to a yoga class that was intended to help her find her zen. The timing would be perfect, and I would see that cute little bundle of fur reduced to a blot on the road. Talk about ruining my day. So I did the only thing I could.
I beeped my horn. I rolled down my window, leaned out, and yelled at the squirrel to get back on the sidewalk, goddammit you foolish creature!
And he did! The SUV rolled by without incident and no animals were flattened or otherwise maimed. My mother, who was riding shotgun, was most impressed.
The gentleman in the monster truck sized pickup in front of me, the one with the gun rack, was not so impressed. My beeping and wild gesticulating did nothing to impress upon him the sanctity of animal life, and I imagine he was debating doing something more permanent to silence my noise than simply flipping me the bird as he did.