Looking back, I probably should have realized when I began to notice those tiny, little pinhead zits forming on my chest that there would be a bad moon rising.
For years now, those little zits have been the fog horn of my hormonal lighthouse, signaling a warning that my ship is about to crash into the craggy, rocky shoreline and a mood swing is imminent.
Unlike a full on acne breakout that is hard to miss, these little guys are so tiny that if you’re not paying attention, it simply appears that my chest is a little flushed. But, that’s how those crazy perimenopausal mood swings are - stealthy, subtle and definitely below the radar.
Just so you know, I didn’t mean to engage in an all out verbal assault on the asshole father of a cute little soccer girl. It’s just that when mood swings go nuclear, well, sometimes it just gets ugly.
So, I pulled into the soccer fields that day to pick up my 10 year old daughter from practice, blissfully unaware that life was about to imitate art and that the words to an old pop song on the radio would take on new meaning:
“Well I don’t know why I came here tonight. I got the feeling that something ain’t right.
I’m so scared in case I fall of the chair. I’m wondering how I’ll get downstairs.
Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right, here I am………..Stuck in the middle with you.”
As usual, the parking lot was full and traffic was heavy. Scanning the area quickly, I spotted an open space close to the front. Convinced that God was smiling on me, I happily squeezed between two vehicles that were periously close to the white lines on either side of me.
As I slid in, right impressed with my driving skills, my peripheral vision caught the open doors of the van next to me with the asshole a guy, resting in the back seat.
“Crap,” I thought, ”how am I going to get out of here without bumping this guy’s door next to me?”
Because, like I said, he and the driver of the other vehicle were both right on the edge of the white parking lines making it VERY difficult for me to slide out of my van without tapping the door of his van. Which is exactly what I did. Ever so lightly.
Seeing him there I politely greeted him with a nervous hello and slid sideways through the vehicles onto the playing field to begin the trek across to pick-up my daughter. Then I heard this:
“Watch the van”
I stopped and looked back. “What?”
“ Watch the van”
I stood for a moment, slightly slack-jawed. I couldn’t believe my ears! Who the hell does this guy think he is? He’s the one hanging over the edge of the parking lines, making it completely impossible for anyone over a size zero to squeeze out of their door and he’s going to get shitty with me about it????”
” Ex - CUSE me?”
“Watch the van”
“You’re kidding me, right?” I scoffed incredulously. “I barely touched your van!”
“Watch the van”
Okay. So, here’s the deal: I realize now that by this point I had already missed several opportunities to rethink this situation and make a better choice in how I handled this guy.
I mean, judging by his monosyllabic vocabulary, along with his persona non grata, chances were, if left to his own devices, eventually, he would become the recipient of a Darwinian anyway.
Another tip off should have been the big, fat, hairy gut hanging over his dirty, sweaty, smelly polyester gym shorts and the lint lodged in his belly button.
And definately, the sea of trash on the floor board of his rusted out 1990’s model Dodge Caravan, that he kicked around when he was going all alpha male on me made the entire situation, well, simply ludicrous.
Furthermore, engaging this guy in a verbal smack-down would be the moral equivalent of taking candy from a baby or refusing to pay the blind guy at the newspaper stand. It just wouldn’t be right, you know?
But, I was under the influence of an estrogen overload and a progesterone deficit and the result was not a zero sum game. I was radio-active and couldn’t be held responsible. Not really.
So, I stepped back toward the vehicles ready to let this guy have it. By now he had fallen out of the van and was puffing his chest out - kicking a can and an empty Juicy Juice box out with him. Oh, puh-leeze. What was this guy going to do, take a swing at me or something?
“Look, buddy, it was an accident, okay? Give me a break and chill out will ya?”
“Watch the van”
“Yeah, sure, Okay. Riiiiiiight. What’s it worth anyway? About $2 grand?”
And just like that, before he had a chance to say anything, I spun around on my heels and stomped off.
Now ladies, at 52, nearly 53 years of age, I have learned that when it comes to men, there are two things you just don’t mock: their penis OR their wallet.
Because as we all know, no matter what they say - size definately matters. And judging by what he said next, I am certain that I had found his Achielles Heel.
“HUH????? WHAT???? You just get on outta here……… FAT ASS!”
And yes. I did briefly wonder if he was actually looking at my ass when he said it was fat. But then I remembered that I had on my Size 12’s and NOT my Size 16’s and so continued my sanctimonious victory stomp right across that soccer field - shaking my money maker every step of the way.
“I’ll show you a fat ass, buddy”
As you all know and probably learned in Junior High School, the last thing you want after you’ve just verbally sucker-punched somebody (or in my case, just made fun of some guy’s penis ) is to give them an opportunity to stew in their humiliation and then have to face them again. Because time will definitely not be on your side. Chances are very high that even those at the bottom of the food chain, given enough time, will be able to formulate one very smart-ass comeback.
I mean, think about it. Not only had I just essentially told this guy that his manhood was the size of a pencil, but I had also intimated there wasn’t enough Viagra in the world to help that limp biscuit. So, let’s just say – he was pissed and I was certain I was about to get burned. Bad.
I nervously hung around the area where my daughter was practicing and shot furtive glances his way hoping that he would just leave and we could put this little misunderstanding behind us. But, hell hath no fury like a man defending the size of his penis and he wasn’t going anywhere. He was waiting. For me. Patiently.
Like a dead man walking the last green mile, we made our way back toward the parking lot. I kept my head held up, making sure to pepper the conversation with lots of chuckles and laughs so that he knew I was paying absolutely no attention to his hairy, lint-stuffed gut. Stepping over the can and the Juicey Juice box, I squeezed my money-maker-fat-ass right between the two vehicles and slid into the front seat. I was about to close the door and savor my self-righteous victory when he said:
That’s all you’ve got?
I’ve just completely emasculated you in one fell swoop and the best you’ve got is,
Now, I’m going to be the first one to tell you that I have been known to have a very sharp tongue. If given the right situation and the right circumstances, I can scissor you up in no time flat. It’s not a quality that I’m particularly proud of and as a Christian, well, you know what I mean. Consequently, I very rarely back down from verbal confrontation, especially if I smell arrogance or an injustice.
That said, had it been any other day in the cycle of the moon, I could have easily closed the car door and not responded. In fact, it’s not inconceivable that had I not been H-U-T-I (hormonally under the influence) it is likely that I would have issued an apology to the Darwinian recepient when I first bumped his door and none of this would have occurred. But, that’s not how it happened and well – anyway.
As you’ve probably figured out by now, I didn’t let it go. I popped the door back open and before my internal editor could slap its hand across my mouth the words “stuff it – asshole” flew right out. Yeah. I know. I should have known better.
This was not a guy who was going to take the high road. Especially not with that van. And given my experience with him up to that point, I shouldn’t have been surprised at what happened next either. But I was.
And I swear to God ladies. On a stack of bibles. Here’s what he did: He curled his lips back, bucked his teeth out at me - EXACTLY LIKE A GOPHER - and then yuck-yucked.
Just like Gomer Pyle.
Clearly, this was a battle I was not going to win. Besides, there’s nothing scarier than someone with nothing to lose. I had just made fun of this guy’s pee-pee van and there was no turning back now. I’m sure he had figured he had just been exposed (pun FULLY intended) and so, what the hell. He let me have it. With both barrels. Or bucked teeth. Depending on how you want to look at it.
At this point, I was more than mildly annoyed with myself for engaging this ya-hoo in the first place. Sighing, I put my car in reverse and just shook my head at him as we pulled away. He just bucked his teeth at me again and yuck-yucked.
As we drove home I was lamenting the fact with my daughter that I had let this guy get me all worked up. I was very remorseful and teetering on a night of self-flagellation for being so stupid. I kept reminding myself that it was those damn hormones and mood swings and that really, I was a good person.
Soon, my daughter joined in and in her very kind and supportive way said all the right things:
“Don’t let it both you, Mom, everybody makes mistakes.”
Oh, it wasn’t that bad mom, don’t worry about it.”
And then she said
“Besides, he deserved it, mom, he started it in the first place.”
“And, anyway, what was WRONG with his teeth???? He looked just like a GOPHER! ”