Flush It Friday: Pumpkin Spice Edition
Welcome to the Pumpkin-Spiciest Flush It Friday of 2017! It’s been a pretty eventful couple o’ weeks for your old pal Gourd Toddler. I had the pleasure of going viral for the first time with my grumpy-as-hell piece about common mistakes young DIY bands make, a lot of which went whizzing above the heads of thousands of rockstar wannabes and bitter old farts who called me all kinds of brutal names as they discussed my piece. I gotta say, being the focus of so much ire was intoxicating – I totally understand dedicated internet trolls now. Look forward to my follow-up “Hey Idiots: You’re Never Getting Rich From Playing Rock And Roll So Just Have Fun And Be Cool About It”!
Speaking of playing rock and roll – my bandmate has to leave the state to deal with personal matters for a few months, so I hastily booked a day in the studio to track drums for all our new songs. We were hoping to get the whole thing tracked in an afternoon, but perfectionism and performance fatigue kept us in the studio for a solid 11 hours. That sucked near the end, but goddammit I wanted to get it right. Pain lasts a moment, but those tracks are going to live forever, so I know pushing through was the right thing to do.
My life had been trucking along nicely since then, up until two days ago when I got some terrible news – a friend of mine was killed while riding her bike. She was really young – not even of American drinking age. I hadn’t kept in contact with her once she moved away from here a couple years ago, but she was one of the sweetest people I’d ever met and that news hit me like a ton of bricks. Then shit got worse.
Yesterday morning, I had one of the most, uh, exciting commutes of my life. I’m a bicycle commuter, and luckily live in a city with a ton of infrastructure for it. Bike lanes and paths are all over the place, but there are still a few key arterial roads with no room for adding a bike lane. I’m totally comfortable riding as a part of traffic, so that’s no issue for me. However, it WAS an issue for a grumpy-as-fuck old man to angrily honked and screamed at me for riding on a road with no bike lane. I caught up with him at a red light not two blocks up and asked him why he was so mad – the conversation went something like this.
“You’re not a car!”
“Neither are you, you’re just driving one. I’m driving a bike and I’m legally entitled to a full lane, just like you are.”
“No, you can’t be in the road!”
“State law says I can, actually.”
“You’re in my way!”
“So are all these other people!” *Gesture to dozens of cars stopped around us.* “They are all in your way – that’s how traffic works. Why are you screaming at me and not them?”
“*perplexed look* Well I pay road taxes!”
“Yeah, but cars damage the roads they drive on, and road taxes have never been enough to cover those costs. Meanwhile, bicycles do virtually no damage to roads. That means if you drive a car and I don’t, I’m basically subsidizing you. You’re welcome.”
“Well it’s no wonder you people get killed all the time!”
“…….. You think I deserve to fucking DIE because you wanted to get to your red light 5 seconds faster?”
I lost it and punched his expensive-looking car.
Then I spat in his face.
Incoherent yelling from both parties ensued.
I’ve never done anything like that before. I’m a very peaceful person and have never resorted to violence in my life to settle disputes, even when someone was screaming at me and provoking me. But when he said cyclists deserve to die, like my very young friend just did, I completely lost my cool.
As the light turned green and I rode off, I noticed a schoolbus behind me. Now, I work in the public school system. I was praying to sweet baby Jeebus that none of my students were on that bus and saw me spit on a man in public.
Turns out my students were on that bus. They saw the whole thing. Oops.
Thankfully there’s a dope noise rock show in my basement tonight – I’m going to feast on malted barley and dance my ass off to distract myself from the possibility of one of my superiors catching wind of my extracurricular spitballing and deciding I shouldn’t be around children anymore.
You know the drill, flushers – What the fuck is going on in your life on this fine Autumn day?