People Stories: Crazy Driver!

He cut me off so severely, I barely had time to react. One more inch and my v6 engine would’ve sat crushed in the back of his truck.
I was livid.
I followed him.
Through the left at the next light, up to Pennsylvania Avenue and right at the mall.
He pulled into the parking lot of the Starbucks. I pulled in next to him.

I took several deep breaths before I got out of the car.
“Excuse me, sir!” I called.
Wavering, the short, heavy man turned.
“I don’t know if you realized it, but you nearly ran me off the road and caused an accident back there!” I was tempted to raise my voice, but I’m sure it came out pretty level.

“Oh.” He looked down. “I am so sorry. I didn’t even notice.”
There was a pause.
“So…is everything okay?” I ventured, half-joking really.
“No. No…I just needed a break. I have a lot on my mind right now.”
“What’s wrong?”
“It’s my wife. She’s dying of breast cancer…it’s just a matter of days.”

I felt my soul being tugged. My insides dipped well below my knees.
Eff me.

“God. I’m sorry to hear about that…do you have any family? Kids?”
“No,” he half-smiled, nodding his head. “It’s just the two of us. She’s got hospice care at the house and her sister is here now. I just needed a break and came out for some coffee.”

Sucking in a deep breath, I offered my prayers for them and gave him a hug. While I apologized for confronting him, I also reminded him that he still needed to be here…for his wife.
“No more driving crazy,” I chided. He smiled.

We went our ways.

I still think about him, though. How he’s doing and if he’s okay. The first time I told anyone about this was the first time I thought…he could’ve been the crazy one.


3 thoughts on “People Stories: Crazy Driver!

  1. Oh, Aisha, you are so sweet to venture out of yourself and ask what was wrong, I’m not sure I would have thought to do that. Thinking about what this poor guy is going through made me tear up. I mean, maybe it’s not true, but it still makes me think… when people are rude, there could be something going on that makes it very much not about us.

    Thank you for sharing this.

  2. Without actually seeing if it were true with my own eyes, his body language said it all. He was a tired man, losing his wife and unable to do anything about it. Shoulders were slumped, not really all there – but calm…like a deep state of acceptance, I guess?
    This actually happened years ago and I really do think about him from time to time.

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