Highway to Hell, or, Why I'm Not Allowed to Grocery Shop Alone

If you haven't heard yet, many of the drivers in Arizona can't drive well. It's a fact. I had to take a wonderful class on the history & culture & government in AZ. Had to. In order to be highly qualified. Whatever. The only thing I remember from my class is that AZ has one of the highest (if not the highest) rates with regards to car accidents. Cheery, right?

I don't know. I might still be bitter about the accident last year when I was on my way home from work, sitting at a red light when two cars in cross-traffic ran their red light, came out of the intersection, and HIT MY CAR. Zero miles per hour. Stopped. Still I get hit. They came at me from the front and hit the passenger side and my hatch. Subaru intervention, I was fine.

And I might be remembering the time I came home from work only to find boyfriend hopping around with a naughty grin on his face. "Guess what happened?" he says impishly. Apparently, he was driving home and being tailed when someone cut him off. He had to slow down, the car tailing him wasn't paying attention, and in an effort to not ram into boyfriend, he did a swerve, overcompensating and running into the median. I'm picturing a blockbuster movie car crash, are you? Boyfriend looks in his rear view mirror and sees flames and wreckage...Just kidding, but the drivers here are bad. To the point where you can take a bit of joy in seeing a tailgating idiot ruin their car (while not hurting anyone else).

Flash forward to yesterday at the grocery store. I met boyfriend there because I had a previous engagement. I am behind a soccer mom in her shiny new SUV. Looking all soccer mom-y. She passes a spot. As she passes it, I see the spot. Turn on my turn signal. Wait for her to creep forward so I can have it. Then she sees it. Slams on the breaks, starts backing up. Oh hell no. One thing you must know about me is I am one stubborn chickie. I sat in my car, turn signal on. Still no signal from Soccer Mom. I wait. She waits. I win, because she tries to swing forward and back in to the spot and that is when I take it! Three cheers for Emily. No? Am I the only one cheering? So sad.

I get out of my car and start walking, wishing Jeremiah was there because he (or his tattoos, whatever) help(s) dissolve a lot of conflict. I don't know why (funny side dish: unloading the trunk with the garage door open awhile ago, we watched as the Jesus people pimped Jesus door to door (which, by the way, I don't think Jesus would have appreciated, honestly) I'm getting feisty because I know our house is next. Jeremiah picks up the tire iron, turns around, and they walk right on past. It might have had something to do with the flames etched into his leg. Maybe the tire iron? Maybe both.) So anyway, no boyfriend to help me. This lady comes flying after me, like that scene from Terminator when they are in the car and look out the back window and bad terminator is catching up with them. You know the scene? It was like that.

She catches up and says "YOU are the reason for all the bad drivers and YOU, honey, are the reason people get so angry. I had that spot picked out before you even turned down the aisle!" It is at this point that I know she doesn't know my mom, because mom always says you lose your point when you exaggerate and this lady was clearly exaggerating because I was behind her the whole time. Secondly, well, she was starting to piss me off. I was all, "Oh no you didn't." I whipped around. "You did NOT have that spot picked out! You saw that spot after you passed it and then decided you should be able to back up to get it. Not ONCE did you turn on a turn signal! You passed it, too bad. My spot." (And you know what? Where I'm from, people signal their driving intentions. She didn't. Who's the bad driver now, right? Plus, did she back into her new spot? Take a guess.) And then she said "blah blah blabbity blah." And she might have called me honey again. To which I responded, "You? Are full of it!" and walked away. I did some hand waving, too.

This is why we usually strictly follow the rule: Emily shalt not shop alone.

p.s. I did not use any naughty words because she was towing a very embarrassed teen daughter and I am NOT that kind of person. But I will wave my arms around, because I am still that kind of person.

p.p.s. 5/13/10 - I was just riding with a co-worker who was talking about the process of getting her son a license. Apparently, here in AZ, you do NOT have to take any classes. You do NOT have to drive with an instructor. You do NOT have to document road time. You just get a permit, take a test. Then you get your license. You scare me, AZ. You scare me. No wonder there are such horrible drivers here.

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