And you know, as soon as she said that I was 12 again. I used to travel to and from school, an hour each way on a big purple school bus (yup, purple) with the Grumpiest Driver In The World, name of Dudley. The only time he ever spoke to the passengers was to tell them off and he would yell and spit would come flying out of his mouth and it was all very not nice. I was one of those 'different' kids and none of the kids who 'got' me went on our bus, so I'd sit there by myself, imagining I was on a horse riding alongside the bus and jumping over things and having a big adventure for an hour. And when Dudley slammed on the brakes, got out of his seat and yelled at us, I'd always get a hell of a fright and feel bad. I don't like being yelled at.
Anyway, when the driver this morning got up and spoke, in my mind, for a split second, she immediately became The Enemy, I felt guilty and annoyed at the same time, and I buried my face in my book and ignored her.
Little voice: You're so mature!
Me: Oh look! Sarcasm. That's new. Anyway, no I'm not, shut up.
Of course it was all sorted (the other passengers must have had friendlier drivers when they were kids) and now I like bus drivers again. But it surprised me - I wonder what Dudley would say if he knew he'd affected an impressionable young mind like that?
The other thing that happened on the way to work was running the gauntlet of collectors for the Pink Ribbon people. Now breast cancer is a worthy cause, I agree, but being accosted by no less than 20 of these people, one after the other as I walked along Lambton Quay? Argh! It's guilt-manipulation. With each one it gets harder to ignore them. Anyway the lesson I learned from this is - whatever you think about exchanging a donation for a little piece of ribbon to wear as a badge, take it. That way the 19 collectors down the street will stop eyeing you like hungry hyenas, and you can feel smug and self-satisfied that you've 'done your bit.' Of course I think giving emotional support to someone who has cancer is worth more than a $2 donation, but I'm not going to take that up with their collectors.
See, occasionally I can exercise discretion when choosing my battles..