April 23, 2009

Day 23: In defense of bad drivers

My husband says I should be a spokesperson
for all the drivers he calls idiots
because I give them the benefit of the doubt.
Really I can see myself
doing the same stupid things
with little excuse.
He curses them
the annoyance of their existence on the road
the hazard they are to people everywhere
and I am explaining
how they could actually be thinking this
or trying to do something-or-other
or be having a brain fart for heaven's sake.
And we argue the whole way home
until our son is asking us
please stop like fifteen minutes ago.
It all boils down to the time I ran a stop sign
without realizing it and wrecked the car.
I never thought I was a bad driver.
But there it was

I feel passionately for these strangers' plight
and want to make their case heard
shield them from criticism they will never hear.
If I could be a bad driver
then anyone could be a bad driver.
I am every bad driver. Our average-ness is our excuse.
Our normalcy.
I will give them the benefit of the doubt
every time
unless I see them talking on cell phones.
Then they are clearly idiots
and I will give my unsympathetic husband
the benefit of the doubt for once.

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