Je Ne Suis Pas Un Cheval
I SCARED A WOMAN THIS MORNING. I didn’t mean to. It was accidental and unintentional. If I’d meant to do it you’d see it on the 7 O’clock News. I was just trying to be polite.
It was early – too early, and not all of my societal filters were in place. You know, my Uber-Macho, Harley riding (if I had a Harley), Twinkle in my eye, self. I hadn’t had my coffee and I was little more than Organic Matter wearing shoes.
I had ordered my coffee from the Barista and I was lurching back to my seat in the corner when I was faced with a woman who was coming in the other direction. She had a carrier tray full of coffee.
“This town ain’t big enough for the both of us.”
Not in that particular spot at the St. Arbucks Clinic for the Caffeine Addicted.
I stopped. She stopped. It was in that moment when my Medieval Knight of the Round Table, raised to be a Gentleman, DNA kicked into gear.
In an effort to break up the incipient traffic jam I took one step back and another to the side. I then bowed slightly and waved her through. She looked at me with her eyes the size of Dollar Store charger plates, scurried past me and went through the door at about Mach two. When I looked up she was gone and I was standing there like Pepe Le Pew on a bad day.
Someone seated over in the far corner said, quite loudly for so early in the day, The Age of chivalry is not dead!”
I don’t know about that.
I suppose my actions could be called “Chivalrous.” They could also have been mistaken for the initial signs of a heart attack. I prefer the Chivalry part of it. I was trying to be nice to the woman, not scare her.
The origin of the word “Chivalry” is rooted in Old French and meant “Horsemanship.” Perhaps that woman would have preferred it had I reached out and kicked her – then pooped on the floor. Maybe not.
Some people just don’t know how to handle good behavior. Given the current seemingly adversarial climate between people her actions were not surprising, but my behavior was.
I wonder what was actually going through her head as I bowed and waved her heraldically through our impasse. Did she think I was being a Smarty Pants? Did she think I was about to launch an attack and seize her coffee. Did she think at all? Probably not. I know that I wasn’t. Before sunrise my body is strictly on Autopilot. About the only decision I can make at that hour is where to sit before I fall over. She may have been stuck in a similar set of circumstances.
She was carrying a tray overflowing with coffee and napkins. She obviously had lost a bet or was kissing up to someone at work. She didn’t look all that chipper about it. Faced with me bowing and waving her central nervous system slipped into “Fight or Flight” mode. Not wanting to spill the coffee her Hypothalamus kick started and sent her zooming past me.
Nature’s response to me at 6:30 AM
I don’t feel insulted. If this situation was reversed and I was the one holding all the coffee I might have limped away at top speed too.
No, that’s not true.
My Mama didn’t raise no fools – apparently a couple of Medieval French Knights who bow and step aside for damsels with coffee – yes, but no fools. Not bad for a Lithuanian gal from Cleveland.
(Winner of Spectacle Contest: Against my better judgement.)