The Downfall of Western Civilization

What do you get when you take a person with no patience, cross him with someone with no manners, throw in a dash of probably-didn’t-graduate-high-school, and top it off with having eaten mostly Twinkies for about 30 years?

You get this:

On Monday night I’m driving home, it’s about midnight, and I stop for gas.  The BP that I frequent isn’t open at this hour, so I have to go to 7-11 where there are only 4 pumps, one of which is diesel.  I have to wait a few minutes while the person currently at the pump finishes up.

As I pull up and begin fueling, a little sea-green Geo Metro (or equivalent) comes up behind me, waiting for me to finish.  When I do, I get into my car and then write my mileage down on the receipt, as I always do.  This takes 30 seconds tops; the pen is in my center console, the receipt is already in my hand, and the light from the gas station is enough that I don’t have to turn on my lights or anything like that.

I put the receipt into my wallet, and as I’m putting my wallet into my pocket, I see the little Metro is now approaching me from the front, and it comes up right next to my door, so the driver is right next to me.  He seems to want to say something to me so I roll down my window.

Me: (rolling down window, about 25% complete)

The jerk: what the f--- is your problem?  You see I’m f---in’ waiting for you!

Me: I was... (here the jerk instantly cuts me off; my statement was going to be "I was writing down my mileage on my receipt")

The jerk: you want to go?  (from the jerk’s tone it’s clear that this means, "do you want to fight?")

Me: (flabbergasted and trying to stifle a laugh along with my disbelief) No.

The jerk: you want to go right now?

Me: No?  (I begin to drive away)

The jerk: yeah, mother f---er, you’re a f---in’ a--hole.

This guy was seriously angry.  He was yelling, and he cut me off literally every time I tried to respond to his idiotic statements, including my two terse "no" responses.  The first time he asked me if I wanted "to go," he seemed to be starting to open his car door, but he had pulled up in the tiny space between my car and the street so there was maybe 18" between our cars -- not nearly enough for a normal person to open a car door and fit through, let alone this beastly lunatic.

In retrospect the whole episode was pretty funny, but at the time, he was making me really angry.  That anyone could be so freaking stupid and impatient and rude made me mad, but the fact that he kept cutting me off REALLY frustrated me.  I didn’t have 3 seconds to even attempt to say anything.

Posted by Anthony on 11 replies


01. Aug 10, 2005 at 09:03am by Tasha Moyer:

Someone with no manners, probably-didn’t-graduate-high-school, and having eaten mostly Twinkies for about 30 years?

For a minute, I thought you were talking about ME!


02. Aug 10, 2005 at 12:09pm by Rolly:

You save all your gas receipts?

03. Aug 10, 2005 at 01:11pm by Anthony:

Yeah.  It’s a convenient place to write down my mileage, so that later I can enter the mileage and volume into my fuel economy spreadsheet.  Plus, in 20 or 30 years when my kids start to drive, it’ll be fun to pull out the old receipts and say, "Back in 2005, gas was only $2.50 per gallon!"

04. Aug 10, 2005 at 04:03pm by Rolly:

Nice!  I thought I was Mr. spreadsheet, but you got me beat here.  And in 20-30 years, your kids will wonder what gasoline was, when they head to the local hydrogen filling station.

PS:  I’ve been noticing lately that my posts don’t show in the preview pane, when I post from work.

05. Aug 10, 2005 at 07:21pm by Heidi:

Visualizing the scene was laugh-out-loud funny!  :)

06. Aug 11, 2005 at 01:41am by Anthony:

About the text being invisible on the post-preview page, when using Internet Explorer: that’s because of the IE Peek-a-boo bug.  I try to be fair towards Microsoft even though I hate them a lot of the time, but in this case it’s totally IE’s fault.  Fortunately the Holly hack is available to work around this bug, and I’ve now applied it to my site.  You may have to clear your browser’s cache / temporary internet files, under Tools -> Options, before the fix works for you.

(Kaiser actually reported this bug a while ago, but it slipped my mind since I never use IE except for testing, which never includes posting.)

07. Aug 11, 2005 at 09:16am by TheMom:

I was at the Douglassville Wawa yesterday to get gas and coffee (of course) and while pumping the gas I noticed that three cars positioned at various pumps around me were empty of persons, either in the cars or pumping gas.  Now, the gas price was $2.25/gallon and there were lines of cars at each pump (you’d think Wawa was giving the gas away), people mostly patiently waiting.  My thought always is, why do these morons leave their cars and walk, mostly slowly, into the Wawa to pay for their gas purchase (and probably peruse the store for snacks, drinks, whatever) leaving those waiting in line to slowly, or fastly, come to the breaking point of losing their patience?  People do have schedules to keep, ya know and there is such a thing as common sense.

I brought this issue up with the worker bee at the counter inside the Wawa after I moved my car away from the pump and parked elsewhere (immediately after I finished pumping my gas, by the way (because now it was time for that simple pleasure of fresh Wawa coffee)).  He told me that they prefer that the cars remain at the pump because it is easier for the worker bees to keep track of who paid and who still owes for the gas that was pumped.  Ok, just to keep things ’easier’ for the worker bees, then how about creating a ’holding space’ one car length immediately ahead of where your car was positioned while pumping your gas.  That way the next person in line can start pumping his/her gas and you most likely will have the time to RUN in to pay for your gas and come back (without snack hunting inside) before that next person is finished pumping gas.  A person who is ’spreadsheet addicted’ would also benefit from using this ’holding space’ to take care of his/her (although I doubt many ’hers’ have this particular OCB) bookkeeping tasks.

Heaven knows I certainly could have used this ’holding space’ to slap down some very unruly kids back-in-the-day who were hitting, biting, kicking, screaming at each other.  But then again, back-in-the-day we didn’t have gas lines :)

Still lvu anyway.

08. Aug 12, 2005 at 01:30am by Anthony:


So what you’re saying is, you still love me anyway, even though I take too long at the gas pump?

09. Aug 12, 2005 at 08:47am by TheMom:


10. Aug 12, 2005 at 01:42pm by Maria:

The nerve of some beastly lunatics!

11. Aug 12, 2005 at 02:48pm by kim:

beastly lunatics, eh?
Hehehe, What a great description! : )

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