Pick Out Somebody You Wanna Punch

Guess I’m in an angry mood this morning. Maybe I shouldn’t listen to Jay Reatard on the way to work. But whatever the cause, I spotted four people along my commute that I wanted to hit really hard.

Victim #1: Corner of Flushing and Wythe, youngish man wearing gray trenchcoat, stovepipe pants, black/white saddle shoes and a Homburg hat. Presumably he doesn’t want to be late to his audition for a Noel Coward play revival, or the F. Scott Fitzgerald Lookalike Contest. He walks gingerly over the ice-covered sidewalk in this fey, tip-toey gait that makes me hate him even more for some reason. He could have skimped on some of that vintage wear and used the money to buy winter boots, so he wouldn’t dirty his spats by slipping and breaking an ankle.

Victim #2: Further down Flushing, by the Navy Yard. Guy in suit walks very casually down cross street. As the bus nears him, he signals it with two hands, like he’s hailing a cab. Mind you, he makes no effort to speed up in any way. He clearly expects this bus to screech to a halt and await his arrival like he was the King of Busville. To his credit, the bus driver keeps right on driving.

Victim #3: Further yet down Flushing, after making a stop the bus pulls away from the curb in a normal bus-like fashion. We are beeped at by an aggressive driver who wants to make a left into the studio entrance we are now blocking as we wait for the light to turn green. I take a peek at the car. It’s a white Mercedes. From my angle, I can just make out the driver’s left hand, encased in a leather glove, clutching a Starbucks coffee cup. I think to myself, Wow, I can only see about 5% of this guy’s body, and I hate him.

Victim #4: Off the bus, walking down Front Street. Half a block away, guy in puffy jacket and backpack doing overly demonstrative tai-chi exercise. Not in a park or on his porch, but on the sidewalk. Arms flailing, big leg kicks, like he works at the Ministry of Silly Walks. I think he must see me staring at him hatefully, because he stops doing it and crosses the street. Mind you, he was at least 50 feet away from me.

And it’s only Monday. Shoot me now.