I was reversing out of my driveway the other day and I backed into another car. Now, I know that some of you menfolk will be thinking that’s because I’m a girl and we of the fairer sex can’t drive very well, but you’d be very very wrong (and silly). I’m a pretty fucking awesome driver - and most especially good at reversing.
So then how on Earth would something like this come about? I hear you ask. Well, allow me to explain…
After thinking about this for quite some time and delving through my memory of the baffling event, I have come to the indisputable, unmistakeable conclusion that some form of sorcery was employed. There couldn’t possibly be any other explanation for what happened.
I was driving backwards at a speed of probably less than ten miles per hour, looking out my back window, looking in all three mirrors, looking out either side of my car, twisting my neck in unimaginable ways and directions, all in all being very careful indeed, as I generally am when I reverse out of my driveway because the children that live in my estate are notorious for standing in the exact place that I am about to drive, and I have a suspicion that if I ran over one of them a grudge would be held against me for quite some time. So yeah, there I was reversing, being careful, scanning all directions. And I’m telling you, that fucking car was not there. It just wasn’t. Even when I bumped into it it wasn’t there, and suddenly it appeared.
There was no flash of light or puff of smoke or anything, that devil car appeared out of nowhere.
I’m sure most of you reckless scallywags would probably just drive off if something like this happened to you, but I am terribly grown up and conscientious. Bracing myself, I got out of my car -wishing and hoping that there was nobody in the other car- but there was… and she wasn’t very bloody happy. At all.
Of course the first thing I did was apologise and ask her if she was ok, or at least I tried to, but I honestly can’t imagine she heard me over the sound of her own shrieking. “Are you really that fucking blind” she was roaring at me. “Are you really”.
What could I say but no. I’m not blind. I mean how would that even work? As far as I know they still don’t give licences to blind people. I can only imagine how dangerous that would be. I love equal opportunities and all that, they’re great, but I think letting blind people drive is going just a bit too far.
Also, seeing-eye dogs - or do we call them guide dogs here? I watch too much American TV. Yeah guide dogs, they’re wonderful and so clever, but I don’t know how good they’d be at giving directions from the passenger seat. So fuck you lady, but no, obviously I’m not fucking blind.
However, my earnest and heartfelt apologies coupled with my denial of having any visual impairments fell on deaf and uncaring ears.
The fact that a scuffed bumper was the only damage done didn’t seem to matter either, she kept going with her unjustified tirade while I stood there saying nothing, my brave lovely boyfriend beside me trying to get her to calm down, to no avail.
I can’t remember much of what she said (my mind was focused on thinking about guide dogs directing blind drivers to… I dunno… where would blind people drive to? the opticians I suppose) but I do recall her shouting that I frightened the life out of her. Which I completely sympathise with, of course I do, I know more than most how horrific it is when someone scuffs your bumper.
I’ve had my own bumper scuffed three or four times over the years and it is petrifying to say the least, almost akin to being held at gunpoint in a dark alley behind a theatre while your parents are murdered in front of you and your mothers pearls cascade from her broken necklace, descending slowly and dramatically to the ground.
Once I even had my mirror knocked off by a passing car, I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how frightening that was! As terrifying as unexpectedly falling right through the ground while out playing in your own garden, into a dark old well where confused and frightened creatures of some sort… oh lets say that they’re bats… flap frantically about your face and head, and then being stuck at the bottom of that dark abandoned well, alone and scared, until someone comes to rescue you.
So I don’t blame this woman for shouting at me, not at all, or for cursing at me while my child sat in the back seat of the car watching all this unfold and wondering what was going on. Indeed I have oft considered donning black clothes and adopting a vigilante attitude after my own dreadful bumper scuffing incidents so I completely understand her ire.
I was most sorely tempted a few years back when a guy literally ploughed into the back of my car as I was yielded at a junction. But I didn’t go crazy like I probably should have. I didn’t put a cowl and cape on and judo chop some criminals. All I did was listen to his apologies, assure him that nobody was hurt, thank him for saying he’d pay for the damage and exchange phone numbers with him.
Well maybe I have learned. Maybe if it happens again I’ll take a leaf out of the shouty womans book and make everything as difficult and embarrassing as I can, and maybe then someone will write a story about what an overreacting cunt I am. Maybe... But probably not.