This morning, shortly before 9 a.m. I was walking from my truck to work along a sidewalk on Burlington, Vermont’s Main Street.
Suddenly, a speeding bicyclist zoomed by me on the sidewalk, brushing against the bag I was carrying, and almost knocking me to the ground. The jerk continued to zigzag down the sidewalk weaving among pedestrians young and old.
A small incident, no big deal, but sometimes, like today, I have an outsized reaction to somebody who is a shining example of complete jerkdom.
I hope bad things happen to this guy for the rest of his life.
I saw him stop his bike in front of the Kountry Kart deli. I walked down that way and saw him buying something in there.
I waited for him outside. He was one of those 20 or 30-something men who think they are stylish through contrived geekdom.
He was tall, sort of muscular, with a short haircut, wearing 1950s-style black glasses, a green shirt with horizontal stripes, and dark pinstripe pants. I nicknamed him Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk.
Just to have fun, I asked him why he almost ran me and several other people over, and ran a red light, and he said he had no idea what I was talking about. I told him what he did, and got the World’s Most Insincere Apology.
I told him he should have been riding on the street, where bicycles by law are supposed to be. You don’t want bicyclists mowing down old ladies on sidewalks.
Clearly, he couldn’t be bothered by these old ladies, who have the gall to walk down the sidewalk when he wants to race down it.
He hopped on his bike, and raced further down the sidewalk, sending pedestrians scattering like so many bowling pins.
I found myself hoping a garbage truck would lurch out from a side street and wipe him out.
Of course, Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk is too self-absorbed to worry about mowing down people on the sidewalk. The sidewalk is HIS to do whatever HE wants with it. If he hurts sombody, not his problem. HIS life is more important than anyone else’s. He is the center of the universe.
Again, today’s bike incident is no big deal. A small, forgettable moment. But I’m focusing on Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk because he is an example of the type of person who I hate most. Luckily, 90 percent of the people out there are not like Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk.
Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk is just part of a small subset of people who believe the purpose of everybody on this planet is to serve them. Yes, I’m whining, deal with it.
People like Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk will get their comeuppance. At least I like to think so. Unfortunately, this morning, the garbage truck never materialized to smack him down. However, the rest of the world will get sick of his pompous jerkiness soon enough.
I like to think he will end up alone, miserable, broke, rejected. The smug look on his face will disappear. Somebody will steal his bike, and he will have to walk.
Then, another Eyeglass Bicycle Jerk will run him over with a bike, and he will be on the ground, gasping in pain. Although it’s not nice, I find myself smiling at the thought.