those dirty "C" words

Common sense... Common Courtesy... and Civility

I make no claims at being perfect
from some of my complaints in my posts you may think that I am some high and mighty do gooder
well...anyone who knows me knows that is just not the case
I can be an asshole just like anyone else
at times
I am more of an asshole than anyone else
well... not usually in a jerk sort of way
but... frequently in a direct sort of way
that is a blog topic for another time

this morning I tried to fight my impulses
so often I let the actions of others cause a reaction in me
I need to fight this auto-pilot set of responses
we are all robots of sorts
giving responses and actions to the stimulus around us

when crossing the street or riding my bike around town I can get offended by the actions of car drivers
with my dogs at my side and my son on my shoulder it irks me when a car comes speeding up or down the hill in front of my house
exceeding the speed limit
refusing to yeild
rather than flipping them off and letting my heart rate raise
I am trying just let it go
as my impulse reaction is doing nothing to alter their future behavior
it is just effecting my mood for that moment and for the moments that follow

there was an incident with a cup of coffee a year or so ago
that incident haunts me
talking to the driver's wife
talking to the driver's neighbors
I have heard this story come up again and again
sure, last week this same driver nearly hit me while I was on my bike
he was speeding on his own block
he was rolling through the stop sign just 10 yards from his own house
at least he is consistent
he is not just driving like an asshole on my street
he is driving like an asshole on his street
he is driving like an asshole on all streets
from what I have heard.... he is just an asshole
I need to let him go

common sense says... getting angered by another person's actions only brings me down to their level
I can not let every action and interaction with people through my day dictate my emotions
life is too short to be bitter and angry all day

it sounds so easy..
it is not so easy
at each corner there is another person causing conflict
another person refusing to give me my right to space
another person putting their needs infront of everyone else's rights

the Mercedez with Virginia tags parked in front of the hydrant in front of my house?
as much as I wanted to take a dump on the windshield of this car... I refrained
went a move civil route... went for leaving a note
rather than making an obnoxious remark on paper
I simply stated that the car was parked in front of a hydrant
wrote this note on pink paper
perhaps the initial response that there is a ticket on their windshield will cause an emotion
then the site that it is not a ticket will allow the emotion to change to the emotion of relief
then... the mention of the hydrant may lead to thought...
but... it is worth a try
I have not investigated
but I am sure that if I spoke with the owner of this car's neighbor's and friends they would tell me
this person does stuff like this all the time
they always go for the biggest piece of chocolate cake
they always take the last beer
they always park in front of the hydrant
some people exist this way

let them be
I can not change them
I will not change them
a ticket issued by officer friendly would not change them
I need to just let them go

the woman who passed me yesterday as I was crossing the street to my car

the same one I flipped off as she nearly ran over my foot
the same one I passed minutes later in my car
yes... the one that I flipped off when I passed her after getting in my car, letting my car warm up, then driving up the hill
she is not gone yet
now she is gone

I need to learn to be more civil
part of trying to be more civil is to act not out of impulse reaction
but to act out of thought
I am a flawed person
I admit this
I am trying


hounddog said...

Great post Joel. I guess I have been reading your blogs so much that I know all of the incidents that you write about.

I too get find myself in the way of impatient people all the time. Seems like around here it is the mostly the over grown man-child who still wants to be part of the bad boy club. You know, the ones with the lifted pick-up trucks hauling nothing but a spare tire. Maybe that is why I like riding dirt more than the road these days. ...(gone)

Your posts are really inspirational, and should be published in your own blog book. I am really glad that you are able to use the blog as much as and the way you do.

Hopefully see you soon!

gwadzilla said...

thanks dog
appreciate it
glad that you enjoyed the post

looking forward to riding with you when you visit back east

time to tuck the boys into bed
the tub is draining now
got to towel them dry

Jill said...

Aww ... who needs civility when you can carry a pellet gun?

gwadzilla said...


there is a saying that I grew up knowing...
"car is best weapon"

I flip people off
I spit on people
I give people the most evil stare I can
more evil than Max from Where the Wild Things Are

then I sprint
I sprint like a bear were chasing me
(figuring that a bear chasing someone is something that someone in Alaska can understand)

I am trying to curb my road rage habits
as I want to ride again tomorrow

B. said...

Keep working on it. I can tell you from experience that the goal is attainable. The less times these situations make you mad the less power they have over you. Life is so much better when others can't push your buttons.

Keep up the fight for your own happiness. I'm routing for you.