The Spitting Incident?!

Friday, April 23, 2010

The year is 2007. It's a warm spring evening and I'm almost finished my run through my neighbourhood, which is a quiet residential area. I'm puffing along and probably feeling like keeling over or voming all over the sidewalk, because this was pretty early in my recreational running career, when some degenerate on a bicycle comes up behind me and speeds past, GLARING back at me and muttering in a crazy voice. All I can make out over the sweet sounds of the Pussycat Dolls on my iPod is to the tune of...

"blah blah blah...fuckin' bitch...blah blah...ass...fuck...mumble mumble..."

Alllll righty then. Good thing I'm almost home! I keep running/stumbling along. I can almost see my apartment building!

Uh comes somebody on a bike. My nearsighted eyes can't distinguish if it's the swearing sociopath from moments ago. As the bike gets closer, it swerves towards me on the sidewalk, almost hits me, and the biker (same guy) SPITS DIRECTLY IN MY FACE! Not just blowing raspberries--we're talking a wad of spit. Slimy. This is also an adult, not a five-year-old child. I have some crazy's saliva, in a glob, on my cheek.

I can't remember what I said but I do remember rubbing my face on my sleeve as I sprinted home, because really, after a swearing episode and a spit-in-the-face encounter, what's he going to come back with next time, a chainsaw? Terrified, I make it home in record time, run to the bathroom, and start disinfecting my face. I rub every single cleaning product in the bathroom on my skin to get rid of whatever germs might be lingering there. I throw my shirt, with its spitty sleeve, in the hamper. And that's around the time it starts to sink in.

I just had my face spit in. For no reason. Who even does that?

I've made the transition from scared to disgusted to angry. Hulk-style angry.

Suddenly, I'm so mad I can't see. It's probably one of the top-five pissed-off moments I've ever experienced. I decide that people can't just go around spitting on runners and that justice must be served.

Frantically I start looking in all our closets for a baseball bat, but given that I'm spending all my time working and drinking wine and watching Dawson's Creek and my roommate spends her days going to class and hitting on married men, we aren't the most athletic of girls and sports equipment is minimal.

I grab the next best thing--a clothes iron, which is the only heavy-ish, portable object that could potentially do some serious damage--and my car keys. I start driving up and down Dunbrack Street looking for men on bikes and when I see the spitter, my plan is to put the car in park, jump out, and beat his ass down with my iron. And in that moment it all seems perfectly reasonable.

Up ahead, I see a bike. Aha! I'm ready to give my spitter the beating of his life when I realize it's a kid of about nine. That would have been stupid. I scour the neighbourhood for at least an hour before deciding that the spitter has probably retreated to whatever crack den or halfway house he pedaled out of and I go home. And I cry, because it's been a waste of an entire evening, I just chased someone with a freaking clothes iron for eons, and there's still some asshole out and about spitting in people's faces.

Three years later, I still get upset when I think about that evening, but I can kind of laugh about the iron bit, as well as be thankful I never found the guy on the bike. I don't know how I would have fared in beating up a grown man, iron or no iron.

You know how there are five stages of grief? There are also five stages to being spit upon.

Stage 1: Denial. "Oh my God. That didn't just happen."
Stage 2: Fear. "Holy shit. I have to get home before I get butchered. Runrunrunrunrun!!!!!"
Stage 3: Disgust. "The saliva has permeated at least five layers of skin. Javex Javex Javex...oooooh, it burns..."
Stage 4: Anger. "I'm going to beat his futhermucking ass with this futhermucking iron that I've only ever used twice and this is going to be the best $17.99 at futhermucking Zellers I have ever spent...BIIIIIATCH!"
Stage 5: Acceptance. "I can't believe I was planning on beating someone up with a frigging iron. He's probably dead now anyway. It's OK."

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  1. that is AWFUL. I can't believe he actually spit on you!
    I had a biker follow me home once and scream at me for going in the other lane to pass her in my car instead of creeping behind her at 15 miles an hour. Pointing out that I did it so as not to run her off the road didn't seem to quell her rage. Fortunately there was no spit involved in this case. Weird though, how there seems to be a trend of bike terrorists!

  2. That's awful too! What's with these hateful bikers?!

  3. Oh my GOD!

    (Sorry new commenter and blah blah HI I'M ALY introduction goes here but I'm sidetracked by this story and so back we go to the...)

    Oh my GOD!

    That's awful! I can't believe that even happened. Who does that? What the? You're a bigger woman than I am for not FREAKING OUT and never ever going back there again. That is so disgusting!

  4. Aly--If I wasn't totally blinded by rage and gone completely crazytown I wouldn't have gone outside either. It was like I totally lost it!!