i mean, i want to be friends with just about everybody.
except a guy in discovery park last night.
well past sunset and in the rain, a group of us were running along the bluff, when out of the dark charged a very large, off-leash german shepard.
it came right up to the (leashed) dog in our party, a good pup who can nevertheless be unpredictable with strange dogs.
it was a tense situation that could’ve gotten ugly very quickly—amplified by the fact that the shepard had no collar, and no owner we could see in the darkness. that the moment hadn’t immediately devolved into a dogfight was not reassuring.
we scanned the area with our headlamps, and the dog’s person finally arrived.
at that point i would’ve expected to hear profuse apologies and assurances not to worry, because “he’s friendly.” it would’ve been a lame, but tolerable response.
instead, we got, “could you turn down your headlamps!”
that was it.
his dog was still way too close, still posturing aggressively, and instead of hustling over to help out, this guy was yelling at us to turn down our headlamps.
it hit me the wrong way.
“maybe you could get your dog on a leash, how about that? asshole.”
“turn down your headlamps!”
at that point my friend shouted something sarcastic (but less inflammatory), pulled her dog away, and we ran on to catch up with the rest of the group.
and that was that.
in a world that has lost its mind, this little altercation is meaningless.
on a micro level, though, it’s disconcerting how quickly my behavior escalated to defcon5. i’ve been assured i didn’t overreact, but sitting here today, i know i could’ve responded more constructively. or at least more cleverly.
i don’t know if it’s the times in which we live, or if i’m just predisposed to hostility first, civility second...but in the moment, under duress, my head went *boom*.
for this, i’m sorry.
and, not sorry.
epilogue: i will try to do better.