Quote of the Day
Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don't just give up.
- Stephen Hawking
Road rage is everywhere these days. It's surprising how easily people can come to trading blows or declaring DEFCON 1 over minor car collisions (and I mean minor, at most I'd need to find a service that does dent repair near me in Denver to buff it out). I don't know if it's something in the water, or if the ensuing fight is the result of someone's really bad day coming to a head. The world may never know. I witnessed one such road rage argument a while ago and were it not for my "intervention" (I barely did anything to be honest) it could have blown into a full fight.
Every night I walk a 6.4-mile path around the Lake in Maple Grove, the epitome of an upper-middle-class suburb. While on the home-bound leg of my walk, I saw two men in two cars jousting in the parking lot of the Maple Grove Applebee's. One man, about 45 years old, soon stopped his car, rolled his windows up, and immediately made a phone call – I later confirmed he was calling the police. The other man, about 35 years old, got out of his car and began pacing outside the car of the man who was calling the police. The pacing man was having a total meltdown – yelling, finger-pointing, veins sticking out – I will refer to him as "the Brute." The man inside the car looked terrified. The Brute was outside his car looking very threatening.
I saw what was occurring and decided to place myself between a couple of hedges. I then did what every red-blooded American male would do -- I started filming the incident with my phone. The Brute did not notice me for about a minute and continued to throw a very impressive display of anger.
From inside the car, the 45ish man then pointed me out to the Brute. The Brute became even more enraged and marched over to me; stopping about 10 feet away. I braced for an attack. Instead, he screamed at me saying "If you can hide in the bushes and film me, I can film you!" He then pulled out his phone and began filming me. At this point, we had an odd form of standoff. I am still laughing at the image of two grown men filming each other -- High Noon it was not. The standoff lasted about five seconds, and the Brute decided that he should call the police himself. My film at this point is dull because the Brute is just on the phone to the police.
While the Brute was calling the police, the frightened man in the car rolled down has a window and thanked me for staying. He also said that he had called the police, and they would arrive in about a minute.
After about a minute, a Highway Patrol officer came and separated the two men. He asked me if I had any direct involvement in the incident. I said no and that I was going home -- which I immediately did. There was no visible damage to the cars, no one had been hurt, and the police officer just wanted to get everyone on their way.
I am certain that I stopped a man from getting beaten – all because I was standing in the bushes holding a phone. The presence of the phone made the Brute reconsider what he was doing.
Tonight, my phone and I will again walk the mean streets of Maple Grove.
Here is the response to this post that I received from one of the engineers in my group.
I know what you're thinking. "Did he film six seconds or only five?" Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a smart phone, the most powerful phone in the world, and would film your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: "Do I feel lucky?" Well, do ya, punk?