Monday, December 31, 2007

Hit By A Taxi, I Find Relief

Today I was hit by a yellow cab as it backed into the intersection of Lexington Avenue and 45th Street in Manhattan. I was crossing the street on a walk sign. Luckily, I wasn't hurt, but I did see red.

After being hit I walked to the passenger's side of the cab. The driver rolled the window down halfway; he thought I was a potential fare. I told him that he had just hit me with his taxi. He said, "No, come on. No way. No way."

If Manhattan had a roof, I would have hit it. Hitting someone with your car is heinous enough. Running someone over and then telling them they were never hit by a car is just... well it's downright Republican.

I launched a few loud expletives trying to convince him that he did hit me. Then, I surprised myself and demanded an apology, "OK, that's it. Apologize or I'm getting the police!"

He mouthed "What?" obviously stunned at my demand. Hell, I was stunned at my demand. Where was this coming from? In an instant I went from wanting to wring the guy's neck to genuinely wanting, maybe even needing, to hear him admit fault.

I restated my demand, "say you're sorry or I'm going to get a f(expanded) cop! Apologize. Apologize, or I'm going to get a f(expanded) cop! Right now! Apologize!"

After a pause he said, "Ok, I'm sorry. Sorry."

I immediately felt better. My relief at hearing the driver admit fault was greater than my relief at not being hurt. Don't get me wrong, I was, and am, thrilled that I didn't suffer a broken leg, but there was something satisfy about having a guilty guy admit culpability. If he had been a wealthy white businessman, I might have orgasmed. It's something for me to ponder. NYC is an easy place to feel powerless.

My face must have softened after his apology. I could see he was realizing that the situation was ending and that I was going to let it go. And I did. I left it at, "you'd better drive more carefully and watch what the f(expanded) you're doing."

I looked up and the street sign was still a bright walk signal (That's how long the incident lasted). People weren't crossing though. They were watching our exchange. Whoever said that NY'ers don't stop to watch things on the street couldn't have spent much time here. Whether it's on the tracks, in a bar, or on the street, people the world over love a train wreck. NYC dwellers are no exception.

I crossed the street, made it to the subway, and waited an extra long time for a local 6-train that ended up running express, bypassing my stop.

Now it's time to walk my dog and watch the last of the sunset across the Hudson. Some of the most perfect things to do in Manhattan are still completely free.

If I don't post again this year, enjoy (safely) New Year's Eve!