Fed up.

It all started over the summer as I crossed 7th Street near Penn Avenue. It was evening and the walk signal was lit.

As I stepped onto the curb on the other side of the street, a BMW with a man driving and a woman in the passenger seat prepared to make a turn from Penn onto 7th, but first there were four women in the crosswalk, talking and laughing and walking at a normal speed. They had the walk sign. They were walking. They weren’t dawdling or lumbering or otherwise attempting to take their time. As they cleared the street and stepped, laughing, onto the curb, the woman in the BMW lowered her window. She was a classy looking woman in her 40s. Short blonde hair. Business suit. Her husband/significant other was in a suit. They looked like they could be your bosses. As the car rounded the corner, the “classy” woman stuck her head out the window and angrily shouted to the group of women, “Do you bitches think you could move any fucking slower?!?!”

I was stunned. The girls were stunned. They looked at me, stunned. I looked at them, stunned.  And we walked our separate ways, just stunned like we lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals or ran out of Nutella.  I wondered what great thing the woman had planned to do with the five seconds she lost waiting for the pedestrians to cross the street. Cure cancer? Write a novel? Punch puppies? Pull the stick out of her butt? Puke up the piss that someone put in her Cheerios?

I shrugged it off.

Then last night I took my mother to see War Horse at the Benedum (Oh. Em. Gee!). We entered a lot not far from the theater and when I circled around a bend I found a Mercedes, lights on, running, sitting right in the thruway that allows cars to circle to the other side of the lot. It was clearly marked “No Parking” and there were lines that indicated he shouldn’t park there, so I was confused as to why he had chosen to stop there, completely blocking traffic. I sighed and put the car in reverse to back up. But now there was a car behind me waiting to make the bend as well. I moved forward again and pulled up next to the running Mercedes, with its lights on. The man behind the wheel was on his cell. He was in his late forties and wearing a business suit. I gestured to get his attention. He looked over at me and I smiled and motioned for him to move forward. He scowled and made the “BACK UP” gesture and looked away.

I looked behind me. Now there were two cars waiting to make that bend.

I sighed and tooted my horn to get his attention.

He looked at me again and once again made the “BACK UP” gesture, not realizing I couldn’t back up. I was stuck where I was.

He went back to his phone conversation. All I needed him to do was move up. His car was already running. There were several visibly open parking spaces on the other side of the lot that he could have moved his car into. But he wouldn’t acknowledge me, ignoring my waving hands trying to get his attention.

I tooted my horn with a short spurt again and lowered the passenger side window where my mother was seated and motioned for him to do the same so that I could explain the situation to him. I wasn’t angry. I was calm. My face was calm. I figured once I explained the situation to him, he would probably feel bad about it and move.

He looked at me, but he didn’t lower his window.

Instead he made a “FUCK YOU” face and he flipped me off with great gusto — holding the finger there for a solid, and — I’m sure to him — gloriously satisfying five seconds.

I was stunned. My mother was stunned.

I took a deep breath to calm my nerves and I got out of my car and walked up to his window muttering out loud, “What’s he gonna do? Shoot me?” I was going to explain to him what was going on and ask him to just move his car out of the thruway. I figured he was going to feel really badly about giving me the finger. But he didn’t give me a chance, because as soon as he lowered his window he went off on me, still on his phone, allowing whoever he was talking to to hear. ”WHAT IS YOUR FUCKING PROBLEM?! THIS IS MY SPACE. I HAVE BEEN PARKED HERE FOR AN HOUR. THIS IS MY SPACE. GET ANOTHER SPACE. THIS IS MY SPACE.”

“Sir? You’re parked in the thruway. We can’t get through.”

“DID YOU NOT HEAR ME?! JUST BACK THE FUCK UP.”

“I couldn’t back up. There were three cars behind me.”

“WELL I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO TELL YOU! I’M NOT MOVING! SO BACK UP!”

And then the rage boiled up in me. I had it. I couldn’t take his rudeness one more second and he refused to simply move his car up so that other cars could access the spaces on the other side of the lot.

I flipped out.

“YOU KNOW WHAT?! I SIMPLY WAS TRYING TO TELL YOU YOU’RE BLOCKING OUR WAY. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO FLIP ME OFF! HAVE SOME FUCKING MANNERS; THIS IS PITTSBURGH!”

He looked at me, stunned, and shrank back slightly. He raised his window back up and returned to his phone conversation, still not moving his car.

I returned to my car, and by now the other cars had given up and one-by-one backed up to go to another part of the lot. I did the same. After parking the car, we got out to begin walking toward the Benedum, and the Mercedes, at that moment, exited the lot.

He wasn’t staying there. His car was running because he was getting ready to leave. And he couldn’t be bothered to get out of the thruway for the people stuck behind him.

I needed wine.

I was fed up.

But it’s not just these run-ins with absolutely maddeningly rude people that has me fed up.

There’s the biker who had his throat slashed.

The teacher who had his face punched in for no discernable reason other than he was there and he had a face and his attacker was “having a bad day.”

And now this.

Pittsburgh police are investigating after a man was assaulted on the South Side early Sunday morning.

Sgt. William Gorman in the bureau’s Zone 2 station said Dave Whaley, a local musician, was crossing at 20th and Sarah streets when a Ford Mustang went through a traffic control signal and almost hit him.

After Mr. Whaley shouted for the vehicle to slow down, Sgt. Gorman said, the car stopped and a male about 6 feet tall, and more than 200 pounds, got out of the vehicle and hit Mr. Whaley, knocking him out.

“Sounds like one punch and he fell face first to the ground,” Sgt. Gorman said.

Pittsburgh, this is not us. We are not the rude assholes who angrily punch our way through life. We are not the jerks who can’t be bothered to put others before ourselves on occasion. We are not the jagoffs who trample on anyone who gets in our path to self-satisfaction.

We are the neighbors in the neighborhoods.

And I don’t even need to tell you what that means because deep down  you know damn well what that means because it is an inherent truth you’ve got lodged in your heart and you will never be rid of it no matter how many people you flip off.

Was I a good neighbor when I lost my shit on that man? No. I wasn’t. I get that. It’s easy to lose your cool. But I’m going to do better next time. And honestly, I’m kinda proud that I didn’t punch his face in with one glorious jab.

It’s nearing the holidays and I’m fed up with these stories and the interactions in my own life. Stop the road rage. Remain calm. Give the pedestrians the right of way. Watch for bicyclists. Hold the door. Hold the elevator. Let others merge. Don’t let your kids grow up to be the kind of people who punch faces in for no reason.

If you know who the Mustang-driving jagoff is who punched Mr. Whaley in the face, turn him in. 

Of course the Karma Boomerang always evens things out in the end, but there’s nothing wrong with giving it a helping hand.

Let’s all just chill out a little bit and get back to being the good people we were raised to be.

The kind of people about whom Mister Rogers would say, “I like you.

You’re a good neighbor.”

And if you REALLY get angry and feel the need to punch a face, can I suggest this one?

He is just BEGGING for it.





79 Comments

  1. SpudMom
    November 14, 2012 11:12 am

    There is also the bicyclist that was INTENTIONALLY hit by a pick up truck in Oakland yesterday.



  2. PMM
    November 14, 2012 11:16 am

    Virginia, even by yelling at Mr. Mercedes you were being neighborly: you were backing down a bully. You saw it only took one dose of his own medicine to chase him off. Bullies are definitely not welcome in Pittsburgh!



    • Cassie
      November 14, 2012 11:22 am

      Agreed. How dare he and his entitlement. Just be kind and then perhaps people won’t find the need to be asshats to you.



    • jake
      November 14, 2012 11:33 am

      Second.

      The “turn the other cheek” kindness model only works so much… Most of these types get away with their nonsense all the time, and someone throwing it back at them is enough to send them (usually loudly cussing) back to their hidey holes to brood. It’s such a pity it’s come down to this though… Decency seems in sharp decline for some unfathomable reason.



  3. Cassie
    November 14, 2012 11:20 am

    People with their cars are weapons, man. I know that I’m not always the nicest when someone cuts me off and I may or may not ride their ass, but, you know, I’m in my car. I’m anonymous. (Insert sarcasm.)

    And THAT’S the problem. We all believe in our cars we’re anonymous. It’s a damn shame.



  4. Courtney
    November 14, 2012 11:20 am

    I believe you are being very neighborly. I would have his license plate number and photo posted if I had my own blog!



  5. jennviolet
    November 14, 2012 11:23 am

    Fed up is right! For any and all information regarding Dave Whaley, please visit his support page on Facebook. There is also a link to help offset his medical costs as Dave doesn’t have health insurance. Thank you!
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dave-Whaley-Support-Page/433185686743290



  6. Laura
    November 14, 2012 11:24 am

    I have been working downtown for 7 years and what you described is so typical. I used to cross Liberty Ave at 6th St towards Market for years and I always patiently waited for the crosswalk light so I could cross. I can’t count the number of times I was almost hit by rude asshole drivers.

    The two more memorable ones are the guy who was running the red light as I was halfway across the street and opened the window to curse me and flip me off.

    The second was the same intersection when one of the larger USPS collection trucks was in such a hurry he kept creeping up on me as I attempted to cross the street. I got so mad I stopped in his path and started to scream at him. Once I moved on, he sped off in a hurry to go run someone else over I’m sure.

    While yes there are many times when people cross against the light, there are plenty more that abide the lights and signs that still get shit on by the asshole drivers downtown.

    People need to slow down and pay attention to the people crossing.



  7. Magus Patris
    November 14, 2012 11:27 am

    Not to generalize, but it seems the higher the price or the car/the greater horsepower of the engine, the ruder the owner of said vehicle is.



    • Bram R
      November 14, 2012 11:30 am

      BMWs, Mustangs, Mercedeseseses, oh my! I don’t mean to get all shameful class warfare, but…



      • Butcher's Dog
        November 14, 2012 11:46 am

        Yep. It the new entitlement. And these bitches have the arrogance to want to cut into the Social Security and Medicare I paid into through my 37-year work career.

        As for the blocking of the drive, my report to the police would have been simple. “This vehicle will be easy to spot, officer. It has both tail lights smashed out.”



    • StacyfrPgh
      November 14, 2012 12:04 pm

      My husband and I drive a used Mercedes. We both try to be extra nice when in traffic and crosswalks to counteract the jerks. The people who do these things may be doing them wherever they are. I despise people who don’t feel that common courtesy or rules don’t apply to them.



      • SteelCityMagnolia
        November 14, 2012 12:10 pm

        Thank you, Stacy for helping to spread the “nice” in this world! Wish more people could be like you!



    • SteelCityMagnolia
      November 14, 2012 12:08 pm

      Agreed. I’ve often said that a person must have to be a card-carrying jackass in order to be handed the keys to certain makes of vehicles. Having an expensive, fast, or fancy car doesn’t entitle a person to be rude. It doesn’t entitle a person to jack-squat. Behaving like it does just entitles everyone else to consider that particular expensive/fancy/fast car driver to be an asshat.



    • Julia
      November 14, 2012 1:02 pm

      I don’t remember where it was cited, but in the last six months or so I read a report that said that people who own really nice cars – like BMWs, Mercedes, etc – tend to drive like assholes. Not all of them, but a pretty big majority. I’ll have to look up where I read it.



  8. Youngstown Norm
    November 14, 2012 11:28 am

    What’s the difference between a cactus and a BMW? On a cactus, the pricks are on the outside.



  9. Ginny's Dad
    November 14, 2012 11:29 am

    Mom didn’t tell me about your run-in with Mr. “Cocky Arrogant I’m Better Than You” but as I read your blog and then the story of the musician who was punched out, I could feel the blood pressure rise and my heart race. At times like that don’t you wish you were the Incredible Hulk? I take comfort in knowing that God says “Vengeance is mine”! You may call it karma but, believe me, some where down the road God is going to deal with those two jerks.



    • Meghan
      November 16, 2012 11:50 pm

      The older I get – the more old school I get. My mom grew up in a neighborhood that was surrounded by cemeteries on 3 sides. My Grammy used to send her & her siblings up with homemade iced tea or lemonade for the gravediggers. Let’s all strive to be that way. Strive being the key word. We fall – we get up.



  10. mishatastic
    November 14, 2012 11:36 am

    Ginny, thank you so much for mentioning what happened to Dave this past weekend. We are all praying for a quick recovery for him, we are all mad as hell that this happened to someone as nice as he is, and we are all hoping that the man who did this to him is brought to justice quickly. There is a description of the man who did this on the Facebook page for Dave posted above — please check it out, and if anyone has any information please contact the police.



  11. RJ
    November 14, 2012 11:38 am

    In working Downtown for all these years, I’ve seen this more than I care to admit. Recently, my work had me crossing paths with an old high school acquantance that, for lack of a better word, is a goof. These people are delusional in that they think this behavior is justified since its “my time”, “my child” etc. Its getting more and more difficult to stick to the old parent maxim “be the bigger person”.



  12. Jen
    November 14, 2012 11:50 am

    Wow! I have also been on the receiving end of this type of behavior recently. Not in downtown, but in Mt. Lebanon of all places. I was at a stop sign waiting to make a left turn when this huge landscaping truck comes up the road and proceeds to not only completely block the intersection of where I am trying to turn, but also starts slowly backing up directly into my car! I lay on my horn so he knows that I am right behind him. He immediately gets out and starts screaming at me that I am the one who “needs to get the fuck out of the way”. I was shocked. Here I am patiently waiting just to make a left turn and he is violating about three major traffic laws and I am the one that gets screamed at? I just don’t get people sometimes.



  13. DaveMinella
    November 14, 2012 12:23 pm

    Ginny:
    I’m going to have to (politely) disagree with you on the karma comment. Maybe what goes around comes around for a few of these jerks, but for the most part, they continue to live their lives just as jerkish as always. The worst part about it is those of us who do have manners (and common sense) are the ones who get all worked up about it. Their actions affect our moods and – since it’s just part of their nature – they don’t think twice about it. We’re the ones left fuming even hours later,



    • StacyfrPgh
      November 14, 2012 12:47 pm

      This is true with me. I often will think about something like this long after the incident occurs. And I’m guessing the person who commits these types of acts just drives on. And then they have kids and then watch out, slippery slope!



    • Ginny's Dad
      November 14, 2012 1:13 pm

      I think people like that are in a sour mood all the time. So we may have to endure their crap for a while and it may ruin our day but these guys are angry and bitter all the time. When you are angry and bitter and think that the world revolves around you, you are miserable. Since misery likes company they take it out on anyone that crosses their path. You reap what you sow.



  14. Dweber77
    November 14, 2012 12:26 pm

    It’s really sad the world we live in has devolved to this. I live in the south and people always say how nice everyone is here. Yeah not really. To the point that one asshole was so determined to get in front of me one day that I had to slam on the brakes to stop him from smashing the side of my car that my wife was on.

    The problem is that people have a lack of human interaction now. No one knows how to be civil to other people or have a modicum of respect for anyone else. It’s truly a sad sad world we live in. It’s to the point that my wife and I will make sure our future kids have social interaction at all times.

    To quote someone out there: “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of IDIOTS.”

    And before anyone says anything, there is no actual proof that the quote came from Einstein.



  15. cathy
    November 14, 2012 12:29 pm

    More than likely some F’in suburbanite that thinks the world is theirs and theirs alone…



    • Brittania
      November 14, 2012 1:10 pm

      Cathy, I am a suburbanite and work in downtown. I find that I am far more courteous of a driver than most of the people I am sitting in traffic with every day. Sure I am eager to get home, and yes my commute is over and hour (Downtown to Irwin), but I am deliberate in my efforts to respect pedestrians and other drivers.



  16. Nicole
    November 14, 2012 12:52 pm

    There was this one time I was trying to park at a meter on Liberty Avenue during lunch rush and a middle aged well dressed lady was LITERALLY standing off the sidewalk in the middle of the spot. At first I thought she was trying to cross the street between sidewalks so I stopped my car, put my turn signal on, and waved her through so she could cross and I could park. She ignored me, and then I waved more enthusiastically thinking she didn’t see me. Then she started walking towards my car. I rolled down my window and explained that I would like to park there. All the while, traffic is building up behind me.

    Finally she turns around to me and says that she is saving the spot for her husband to park there… he was on his way from Fox Chapel and went to stand back in the middle of the parking spot.

    I was shocked and stunned. And then sat on my horn until she was embarrassed enough to move.

    It’s not always people in cars, but just entitlement among people.



  17. pgher
    November 14, 2012 1:00 pm

    I am both a pedestrian and a driver in downtown. I find a complete lack of respect from both parties. Pedestrians cross when they don’t have the walk sign, especially when the light is green. Cars almost hitting pedestrians who are walking legally, especially when there is a crosswalk and no stop sign/light.

    A guy turned left in front of me, cutting me off, while I was going straight at the intersection. I gave a little beep, because I almost hit him, and he was being dumb. He stopped his car. Got out and proceeded to yell at me. He wanted me to get out of my car and fight him. He was a large male in his 40s. I’m a small female in my 20s. I was almost in tears, because he was blocking my car in and he wasn’t backing down.

    I’m not sure what we can do to bring a level of civility back into driving. And it isn’t just people in one type of car or another. If people would just slow down, follow traffic/pedestrian laws and just be a little bit more patient, I think we would actually all get to our destination more quickly.



  18. Jill M
    November 14, 2012 1:02 pm

    This is why concealed carry will never be a good idea for me. I agree – I would have taken a picture of his car and ABSOLUTELY posted it here – and one of his face so his family and friends (if he has any) can be reminded of what a d-bag he is.



  19. Jeff
    November 14, 2012 1:06 pm

    New flash! People are rude. Don’t get bent out of shape about it. Forget it and just live your life.



  20. John Franco
    November 14, 2012 1:12 pm

    Not going all Incredible Hulk on the jackass at the time required a little bit of restraint. Not posting a picture of his license plate here on your blog, that required a LOT of restraint. :)



  21. red pen mama
    November 14, 2012 1:36 pm

    This is why, even though it’s a bit long, I seldom complain about my commute. It’s almost all highway driving (not sitting in traffic), and doesn’t take me anywhere near downtown.

    All these stories (and a lot of these comments) make me a little depressed. Especially at the start of the crazy holiday season. I wish we could simply threaten rude drivers with coal in their stockings.



  22. bluzdude
    November 14, 2012 1:41 pm

    The laundry list of rude events here sounds like every day here in Baltimore. It’s become a Me First society… we might as well just put it right there on the money.



  23. Monty
    November 14, 2012 1:53 pm

    We all lose our temper. But I just don’t get the grown man screaming obscenities at a woman scenario — it’s someone else’s wife, mother, sister or daughter. Be a man. The only explanation I can think of is the little dick issue — which could also make the car models we’re talking about.



    • bluzdude
      November 14, 2012 6:25 pm

      Sounds like that should be a “thing,” like something for which you’d throw a telethon…

      “See this man yelling at the nice lady that needs him to pull is car up a bit? He has Little Dick Disorder. Won’t you please whip out your checkbook, or lob some cash to us to help prick the balloon of uncivilized behavior? Don’t be a bone head; meet us to erect a totem to celebrate wiping out LDD in our lifetime?”

      Alec Baldwin can host…

      (Oh, at first I was thinking “Little Dick Syndrome, but the acronym would be LDS, which I believe is already taken. That would get really confusing.)



  24. CarolineFB
    November 14, 2012 2:00 pm

    I may have decided to play him a tune using the horn on my car while he tried to conduct business. Something simple like “Old MacDonald.”

    I’m a firm believer in karma (personally, I find the justice swift) and there is no reason to damage mine because you’re a jerkface. I’m a rule follower from way back. If it says “Don’t Park,” I don’t. If its green, I go, if it’s red, I stop. If it says “65 MPH” maybe I go 70, but that’s beside the point. We’re forced to live together. May as well make the best of it.



  25. Amy
    November 14, 2012 2:08 pm

    Not to completely change the subject but seeing as you mentioned it and all), how freaking PHENOMENAL was “War Horse”?!



  26. Ginny's Mpm
    November 14, 2012 2:23 pm

    War Horse was simply amazing……



  27. LarryPGH
    November 14, 2012 2:46 pm

    OK… I’m confused about the Penn & 7th example. (I’ve been out of town for the past four years, though, so maybe that’s the source of my confusion.)

    Isn’t that intersection the one where the walk signal comes on (along with audible cues) during a four-way red light for traffic?

    In other words, either the woman didn’t lose any time at all (since she wasn’t able to make a turn on red), or the girls really *were* dawdling and were finishing crossing after the light turned green? Right?



    • Virginia
      November 14, 2012 2:52 pm

      Larry, it may have been one intersection up. I’m not sure as it was over the summer. I just know it was on Penn. And yes, we had the walk light. I know for certain because that’s why we were all so stunned.



  28. Kristen
    November 14, 2012 3:08 pm

    Almost 3 years ago I moved to Florida, and immediately I was shocked by the rude and assholish behavior here. This whole time, I’ve been blaming it on dumb Floridians. I hate to hear that the rudeness has migrated to my beloved city of Pittsburgh. Especially since I would love to move back there at some point!



  29. Lauryn
    November 14, 2012 3:17 pm

    Ginny, you should be thankful that you aren’t in my situation. I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, then went to college at Virginia Tech, which is in a small quiet town in southwestern Virginia. Now I live in the suburbs outside DC. The vast majority of people here are incredibly rude in almost any given situation.

    When driving here you must assume that everyone around you is more important than you because thats how they will drive. When shopping, everyone elses time is more valuable than yours, and in almost any social situation you will hear how important everyones jobs are. There is an over-inflated sense of self worth that permiates everything here and it drives me crazy on a regular basis.

    How bad is it? I was in the self check at the grocery store earlier this week and the woman in front of me was getting huffy with the woman checking out. Little jabs here and there to hurry up. Finally it was her turn and you know she had alcohol. So she had to wait for the guy to come check her license. Transaction completed, she moved to bag her items and I to ring up mine. While moving at a totally logical pace, I got yelled at to slow down. Then she took one of my items.

    I could elaborate on other situations, especially work related ones (I work for parks, it should be fun!). I hate it here sometimes.



  30. Mermanda
    November 14, 2012 3:37 pm

    Ginny, I was thinking about writing a very similar piece as a letter to the editor at the P-G about how disgusted I am with the behavior of my fellow Pittsburghers as of late. It’s just so unbelievable.

    Why do people have such a problem with cyclists? To me, going out of your way to endanger a biker is no different than walking up to a random person on the street and knocking them on their ass for no reason — or clubbing them over the head for the fun of it.

    Your encounter with the Mercedes jerk reminds me of an incident this summer at the GetGo on Penn that seriously left me ENRAGED that people are SO EFFING RUDE and act as if they are the only people in the world who should matter:

    The gas station was jam-packed, so I picked a pump and waited in line for the car in front of me to pull out. Both the driver and passenger were sitting in the car with their doors closed, so I assumed they were done getting gas and would drive away as soon as they got situated. After a few moments, it became clear they were looking for something in the car may not be pulling away anytime soon. At this point I was blocked in. As they continued looking for whatever it was — even getting out and looking in the backseat and trunk, I shared looks of disbelief with the woman next to me who was also witnessing this debacle.

    By now I had turned off the engine and sat there waiting for my turn at the pump for seriously — more than 5 minutes. It felt like 10 minutes, but that may have been my anger making time tick by so slowly. I kept thinking to myself — they will be done any second. They will give up and realize they are being assholes and drive away any second. Just wait it out. Throughout this time, the pump directly in front of them became vacant several times — but I was still blocked in. Why couldn’t they pull up and continue their search at the next pump — OR BETTER FREAKING YET — pull into a parking spot and let us all pump our damn gas and get on with our lives?! Finally, at my breaking point, I got out of the car and confronted these two women with my calmest voice and neutral facial expressions. The passenger was in the back seat with the door open — still searching for the mystery item — and the driver was seated, looking through her purse with the windows down. “Excuse me. Would it be possible for you to move up, please? I’ve been waiting for a while behind you.”

    Guess what I got in return? BLANK EFFING STARES. Then they went right back to their search and totally ignored my polite request. I went back to my car FUMING. I was finally able to pull up to another pump across from them and gave them the evil eye. They couldn’t have cared less. The rage took a long time to wear off. I think my blood pressure was through the roof for at least an hour after that. Why do people suck? (Sorry — this turned into a much longer rant than I had intended.)



  31. Christina
    November 14, 2012 4:12 pm

    Amen.



  32. PittinDC
    November 14, 2012 4:18 pm

    People are working 60-80 hour weeks, then have to check emails when they get home, get called on the cell phone after leaving work, and then they have to sit in traffic, which appears to be for no good reason. People get frustrated. Also, this time of year is even worse because you are stuck in traffic on the weekends as well with people trying to go shopping. Sometimes people come across as rude but they are also just dealing with their own incredibly frustrating situation. It’s not always right, but that’s how it works.



  33. Kathy
    November 14, 2012 5:03 pm

    Sorry Ginny, but I have to say that it IS Pittsburghers, along with everyone else, that seem to increasingly be acting just generally more jerky these days, and if anything, at least I can take comfort that I am not alone in my recent rants about how the only way you can get anyone to take notice is to begin being the bitch because being the nice person just won’t get anyone to respond. I will leave you with one further indication of our descent into nastiness: My husband was directing traffic (he is a police officer) for the funeral for the boy who was mauled at the zoo. Do you know that people were honking their horns because they couldn’t stand to wait while the funeral procession moved out from the church. WTF?



  34. Jennifer
    November 14, 2012 8:09 pm

    Thank you for bringing light to all of these incidents. There’s something wrong in society when a person’s first response is to just beat the hell out of the other person. Amazing that it happens that way sometimes. Please help Dave, the latest victim if you can … http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/Dave-Whaley-Medical-Fund/26029



  35. Emily
    November 15, 2012 12:09 am

    I don’t understand why we have decided that stop signs and red lights are merely a suggestion. Example: I travel the length of Greentree Rd to and from work. In the mornings, there are many, many cars exiting from the inbound Parkway West. The light is clearly red and mine is now green, yet several drivers will continue through the intersection!

    I finally got fed up after the third or fourth time of near-misses and wrote to Green Tree borough. Within days there was a police officer in his car stationed at the intersection. Unfortunately, it’s been a few weeks and the impatient assholes are at it again (almost got hit again yesterday morning).

    It’s just a shame that a police officer’s time is being taken up by a-holes who can’t bear to wait another minute or two for a green light.



    • The Original Beard
      November 19, 2012 1:38 pm

      I actually saw the cop at this intersection pull someone over for blowing through the red light. It was around 9 AM and he was in an unmarked car. That was a one time event. I have yet to see a cop there since about three weeks ago. You should write more letters.



  36. bucdaddy
    November 15, 2012 2:07 am

    “Pittsburgh police are investigating after a man was assaulted on the South Side early Sunday morning.”

    Jesus, that’s a terribly written sentence. I bet AP was responsible for that.

    What were we talking about? Oh, yeah:

    That’s what tire irons are for, Ginny, I bet you have one in you trunk. Take out a tail light and when he comes at you, take out a tooth. And then tell the police he attempted to assault you and you hit the tail light and his tooth in self defense.

    What, is your mom going to turn you in?



  37. bucdaddy
    November 15, 2012 2:24 am

    BTW, be real careful with these assholes. We have a murder trial going on here for a guy who thought some other guys had spilled a drink on him and his buddies at a nightclub. When they all got outside, this turned into a shootout, with one man dead.

    That’s probably not unheard-of in, I dunno, NYC or L.A. or places where James Harrison hangs out.

    But here’s my question for you: Why the hell would TWO groups of men feel the need to come fully armed to a nightclub in … are you ready? … Morgantown, W.Va.?



    • bucdaddy
      November 15, 2012 9:45 am

      Oh, and that was just the worst thing that’s happened here in the last few years.

      You probably already know about our reputation for chaos after football games. What you probably haven’t heard about Morgantown is the random beatings being handed out by gangs of roving thugs. It all seemed to start a couple years ago with an argument between two groups about, of all things, the World Series that left a young man in a permanent vegetative state and has, incredibly, seemed to escalate from there, to the point where (since I frequent downtown by myself after dark) one of my tasks for myself this week is to go to Dick’s and buy a baseball bat, and keep it in my car, and take it out when I’m downtown, and make it pretty obvious what I’m carrying it for. And that I’ll be swinging for the kneecaps.

      I’ve lived here almost 25 years and I have never, ever, seen random violence like this. I could play amateur sociologist (dangerous as a gun in my hands, I know!) and blame it on a society increasingly depersonalized by iPhones and text messages. You know that’s the gateway drug to rudeness — talking loudly on the phone in public, texting at the movies and while driving, it’s all about me and you’re just a series of digits, and here’s a digit for YOU (raises middle finger) if you don’t like it.

      I don’t know how you’d manage to take their phones away from 300 million people, but I’d start there, and see if maybe it doesn’t return some civility to life.



  38. Shari
    November 15, 2012 9:28 am

    It’s not just drivers that have turned so rude. I work part-time in retail and have been yelled at by some really terrible customers.



  39. Scott
    November 15, 2012 9:36 am

    Numerous comments here implying that the rude asshats only drive expensive cars. Yeah….ok. More often than not, when I see this kind of behavior, it is coming from a mouth-breathing, chain smoking yinzer driving a piece of shit car.



    • bucdaddy
      November 15, 2012 11:01 am

      I’m going to be a traitor to my gender here, but the worst drivers I see tend to be men in pickup trucks.



      • red pen mama
        November 15, 2012 11:10 am

        Me too (traitor to gender): I hear that suburban moms in SUVs are the worst, most aggressive drivers. Which is why I don’t want to buy an SUV. I’d be batting a thousand if I did. (Although FTR, I am a very defensive driver.)



  40. Butcher's Dog
    November 15, 2012 10:46 am

    As far as I’m concerned, anyone who stops a car in the middle of traffic and gets out to confront another driver is only moments away from his new career as a hood ornament. Especially if this confrontation has violence as its intent. Couple of cases like that with the driver being given a good conduct award and the number of incidents would drop, methinks.



    • bucdaddy
      November 15, 2012 11:07 am

      I confess I did that once.

      It was snowy night, and I was spinning my way up a road that has several short but steep hills. My Civic was all over the place.

      There was a guy behind me in a … I forget what, but at some point all I could see in my rearview was his headlights. There were a couple times in the course of this treacherous trip that I slowed or stopped, to wait for cars ahead of me to spin their way up a hill, so there were opportunities for this guy to go around. Which he didn’t. He just stayed on my bumper until I crested the last hill and came to a sliding stop at the light, whereupon I got out, stalked back to him and said, “If you want to go around me, go around me, I don’t care, but GET OFF MY ASS.”

      Well, I felt better, anyway.



  41. red pen mama
    November 15, 2012 10:52 am

    It’s not technology (it’s *probably* not technology), or the types of cars people drive, or… well, okay, it may be reality television.

    It’s parenting. (And I say this as a parent. The parents who comment here are probably a case of “present company excepted”.)

    If people raise their children like precious little snowflakes, and attempt to pave the way for them in every interaction they have in life with frustration and/or failure, they are raising a generation of adults who think nothing of taking up other people’s time, or of taking out their frustrations on other people. Sitting at a gas pump or intersection while other people are waiting doesn’t register. Running down a cyclist or punching a stranger in the face is a perfectly justified reaction to these types of adult. Because (insert whinging tone) “he/she was in my wayyyy!” They have been taught that they are more important than anyone else in the world, and they have not gotten the coping skills or boundary setting necessary to be decent human beings.

    So mamas and papas: raise your children right. If you work in childcare or teaching, intervene in these children’s lives. (don’t get sued, obviously.) Don’t let’s keep raising asshats. And if you are a well-mannered, well-raised person yourself: Don’t let the basstids get you down. Karma is on your side.



    • Butcher's Dog
      November 15, 2012 4:07 pm

      Amen, RPM. I think I’m more in love with you now than I was before, if that’s possible. (non-stalker love, of course, internet style). And it goes even further. Since momma and poppa (and more often than not their respective boyfriend and girlfriend if they’re no longer together) will come in and meet with the teacher/principal/superintendent/school board at the slightest sign that little darlin’ didn’t perform well on the latest test/paper/quiz, said little darlin’ gets the notion that nothing is real. Nothing is ever final ’cause it’ll get fixed. And we stare in amazement when scores on standardized tests go down. Or when the crime rate rises. Or when loans get defaulted on (although that’s not always the helicopter parent’s fault).

      I’m really glad I got into teaching when I did. I’m really proud of the 37 years I taught and of the administrative support I got. I realize if I were being hired now I’d probably not make it clear to lunch the second day doing the things I did. And I’m damned glad I’m retired and doing my best to bankrupt the state of Pennsylvania (according to the Trib, anyway).



      • red pen mama
        November 16, 2012 11:35 am

        Aw, thanks. I feel bad for people who work with kids these days! I recently had a parent-teacher conference, and I could tell she was bracing for me to argue with her about my oldest daughter. My daughter is very smart, but has significant attention issues — just like her daddy. The teacher was so surprised when I just nodded along, and said we would work with her at home, and talk to her about it, and see what we could do to help my daughter in the classroom. All the parental hovering really gets to me! I work so hard not to do it. Because I’d like my kids to be responsible adults, not “happy” and “successful”. They gotta do that for themselves.



  42. Lynnetta
    November 16, 2012 11:22 am

    I had a similar instance just last night. I was walking out of the Giant Eagle in Shadyside between 5:30 and 6:30 (heavy traffic time) and someone was trying to pull out of the parking lot onto Centre Ave. The driver must have creeped out onto the street hoping that some nice ‘neighbor’ would let him out but instead he got screamed at by a passenger in a car on Centre (who was not feeling neighborly) because the person exiting the parking lot was in ‘the middle of the $%*& street!”. I looked at the passenger in the car doing the yelling and said back “Be nice!. Just be nice!” She heard me cause she looked at me. I was surprised that she didn’t flip me off.



  43. Sue
    November 16, 2012 3:28 pm

    That’s church, Ginny!

    And in reply to Kathy, above, the funeral procession rudeness is my BIGGEST pet peeve. Do people not know anymore that you stop and let a funeral procession through? The procession has the right-of-way. Don’t get in between two cars, don’t go at your green light when the procession is going through an intersection. Stop and let the whole procession through!!! Blowing your horn at a funeral procession??? Rude, but also sad. How were these people raised?



    • DaveMinella
      November 20, 2012 9:05 am

      I just had to come back and comment on Sue’s post, since I’ve (accidentally) been the funeral procession douchebag. I was second in line at a light on 19, and when it turned green the drive in front of me just sat there. I waited a few seconds and gave a light tap on the horn. Nothing. A few seconds more, a longer tap on the horn. Another few seconds, and I layed on it, with a few expletives, I’m sure. It was at that point that I saw the funeral procession make a left from the intersecting street. I couldn’t have slid down lower in my seat if I tried.



      • kat
        November 21, 2012 8:19 pm

        Confession: This was me once, too. On my bike, light turned green, the 3-4 cars ahead of me weren’t budging. I couldn’t see what was going on… seemed like some cars were sitting in the intersection… I figured traffic was backed up, maybe a fender-bender, I had other stuff on my mind, I weaved my way through. Wasn’t until I got to the other side of the intersection that someone yelled at me “hey, jerk, it’s a FUNERAL” and then it clicked. Probably the most embarrassing moment of a couple years of bike commuting. >_<

        The answer to the question "Do people not know anymore that you stop and let a funeral procession through?", in my case, was… YEP. :( Not a situation I'd ever encountered in 15+ years of driving and a couple years of bike commuting.



  44. Steve Zakman
    November 18, 2012 1:14 pm

    I would have just smiled and nodded to him…then just leaned on the horn until he either hung up or got out of his car. He wouldn’t be able to hear his call anyway. Then if he drove away, I would have been pleased that I got him moving. If he got out of his car, I would have been pleased because I would be able to tell the story about how I jammed some arrogant douches phone up his ass in the Benedum parking lot! I’m all about solutions, baby!



  45. bucdaddy
    November 20, 2012 10:02 am

    Two cars meet in the middle of a one-bridge.

    One guys sticks his head out the window and yells, “I never back up for an idiot!”

    Second guy sticks his head out the window and yells, “I always do!” and backs up.



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