The opposite of nice May 21, 2009Posted by Jane Matthews in acts of kindness.
Tags: litter, Red Bull, road rage
Hmm. So I’d only just got round to thinking about how I could be kind today when the guy in the car ahead of me hurled an empty Red Bull can out of his window. (I’ll never understand this kind of behaviour: if someone is picky enough about their environment to not want litter cluttering it up why not the wider environment?)
Uh oh, all of a sudden I switch to mad woman mode, putting my foot on the accelerator so I can follow him. What was in my mind? Well, to tell the truth I thought I’ll find out where he lives and then I’ll hit the area around the local school and collect a sackload of empty cans. Then, later, I’ll take them round and leave them by his car, together with a note telling him – colourfully – precisely why.
Not kind, you see.
I’ve only just started this project and I’ve turned into the kind of offended person who calls into Jeremy Vine’s loathsome lunchtime show to rant about everyone else’s behaviour.
the drinks are on me
Once I realised what I was doing I asked myself what would be the kind thing to do here? After all, my imaginative little gift would only make Mr Bull see Red too, and then go on to explode like his fizzy drink all over someone else.
At which point it struck me that the nice thing to do would be to go and buy a dozen more cans of Red Bull and leave them by his car with a note inviting him to enjoy a drink on me, but please to take his litter home in future.
Even if it didn’t persuade him to change his behaviour perhaps it would have given him one nanosecond’s pause for thought. Maybe. And cheered him up a bit – someone making a present of his favourite drink.
Sadly, I lost him. I don’t think he put his foot down because he realised he was being stalked by a mad woman in a red Punto. Things like that don’t happen in real life.
More likely the Red Bull kicked in, straight down his leg to the accelerator pedal.
You win some, you lose some.