Columnist for Wednesday, 1/24 - Harlock

Food, Feuds - 1/24/01

Food, Feuds

Tonight I got my food before someone else. And I derived a great deal of
enjoyment from that.

See, I was driving to pick up some food on my way home. My wife had
phoned in the order, timing it based on my usual commute length. Which
is too damn long, but that's something I'm sure I'll get into at another time.
On my way to the restaurant I changed lanes to avoid a slow driver who
I was catching up to. Coming up from behind, a fast-moving car decided
to stay in the lane that I had just vacated, maybe not realizing that the car
they were approaching...well, was slow. They, as I like to say, bet on the
wrong horse. So, I pass the slow car at the next light, the speedy car zips
around it and into the space behind me. I'm pretending that they're
annoyed at this point.

There's now a shopping center to our right. The restaurant is in that
shopping center. Not wanting to drive through a long parking lot, I decide
to turn right, drive down the street, and then go into the parking lot close
to the restaurant. Speedy decides to go the parking lot route. I go into the
parking lot and arrive at a stop sign just a few seconds before they do.
But that's all I need.

I'm ahead of them, and I grab a good parking space. Oh, the gods of traffic
and parking obviously favor me. They cheat, stop in front of the restaurant,
and toss out a passenger. Bastards.

He arrives first, and asks for a to-go order, for "Julie or Jeremy." Yeah,
they've been sent to annoy me. Someone's out to annoy me; it's perfectly
obvious. But what's this? Their order isn't ready! Ha HA! Oh? And mine
IS! I WIN!

I skip out the door with my order just in time to see the driver of the
offending vehicle pull up in front of the restaurant again. Something forced
them to move; they must be really annoyed by now, and seeing me, their
nemesis, leaving with my food while they are forced to wait must get their
blood boiling. I worry about them snapping and trying to run me down,
but their willpower is strong enough to keep themselves in check. And I,
somehow, manage to not jump up and down in front of their car screaming
"HA! IN YOUR FACE, ANNOYING ANONYMOUS PERSON!"

As I drive away, I hope that the driver's patience has reached its limit, and
that they snap at their passenger when he returns. Something like "What
took you so long? That Hyundai driver beat us!" "Hey, if you had phoned
in the order sooner, it would have been ready!" "If you hadn't lost the
menu, I wouldn't have had to spend ten minutes looking for it!" And so
on. I hope the argument continues, growing and mutating into some sort
of clan feud, one that lasts for generations. No, aeons. I want the
passenger's descendants to be seeding the suns of the driver's descendants'
home worlds with black holes in order to make them go nova, without
having any idea why they're doing it, but knowing that it must be done, and
things have always been this way so don't question it. Sure, maybe it's not
the loftiest of goals, but it makes me happy.

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