Am I the Old Man with the Blinking Turn Signal, in The Poydras Review

Am I the Old Man With the Blinking Turn Signal
Thu, Dec 20 2012 12:01 | Prose, Fiction | Permalink

I am driving home after breakfast with the other retirees at the Lions Club in Broad Ripple, driving up Westfield Boulevard on a nice May morning. The White River meanders not far from the street on my right, and the Monon rails-to-trails thing runs along the crest of a berm to my left, basically an old, single-track rail bed that was paved over for this purpose. It’s a nice, sunny spring day and all the girls are out in their short shorts riding their bicycles or skating on their inline skates. I am returning to my home in Carmel after eating scrambled eggs and toast and fruit cup at the retirees’ meeting.

But there’s this guy who’s honking at me. This is on Westfield Boulevard, like I say, a very residential street with lots of kids and bicyclists and Moms with prams, just like in the old days. How fast does he want me to go? “Fuck you,” I say, but under my breath. I’m not one of these people who actually yells at strangers or make faces behind tempered glass windshields. But I am offended. Well, this guy comes right up on my ass and honks again and of course he gives me the finger. Then he swerves and passes me on the right. He does this just before the big T-intersection at 75th street where people are making a lot of turns off of 75th Street onto Westfield and there are more bicyclists, too, but he runs the yellow light anyway. I stop for the stop light and wait and soon the light turns green, but then the car coming from the other direction, southbound on Westfield, doesn’t move. I proceed with caution because I don’t know what the other driver is thinking. Then another asshole comes up behind me and stands on his horn, and he swerves around me and yells something out his window. Well, this is just stupid. I continue on to 86th Street, by the Walgreens where it’s a little more commercial, and I wait for that light to go green. I am waiting back of the pedestrian crosswalk. I do not block pedestrian crosswalks, even when there are no pedestrians. A cop car is across 86th facing in the opposite direction of me. The cop starts pointing at my car.

Holy moly. I’ve got my left-turn signal on. I must have had it on since I turned onto Westfield from Broad Ripple Avenue, just south of the canal. I look at the cop after the light turns green and we both go straight. I can see him talking to his partner, a striking woman with short hair and a sharply defined jaw and chin, dressed in a dark blue uniform just like him and she is really sharp, not butch at all, and then they look at me and they’re smirking. I am the object of derision, I realize….

Read the entire story here.

Advertisements