Today has been a decent day, but it started out rough. Streak (the dog) has had a bit of a rough time of late. Well, it is hard to see, because his eyes are great as is his appetite and enthusiasm. But his back hips no longer flex as they did, and so he has slipped a few times on the hardwood floors. We have him on a canine anti-inflammatory, and I think that helps a lot, but he is still 13 or so.
This morning, I woke up from bad dreams and watched Streak limp around a bit. I decided to head to Starbucks to give him a break and let him nap. After writing inside, I went outside to read a bit. Sitting out there, I watched this large truck back into the nearest handicapped spot after which two young (ish) men in dress slacks and ties walked into the store. I kept telling myself to ignore it. I told myself that there was some handicap that was not readily visible and this was legit.
But my mood was a dark one, and I had to check it out. I moved to a table closer to the (still) idling vehicle. The back tags said something about being a used car and a "dealer." When the two guys came out with trays loaded with iced drinks, I had to ask.
"Are you a car dealer?" I asked.
Mr. Smarm glanced at me and said, "yes, I am." He came over and shook my hand and told me where he worked. I asked why he was parked in the handicapped zone. He said it was because he and his buddy had to carry "like, 13 drinks" for their coworkers. I pointed out that the handicapped zone was not for that purpose. He then asked if I was handicapped. I said no, I was just a concerned human. He then pointed to the empty handicapped spot next to his truck. I said, those spots weren't for that purpose.
He then asked me if I was a cop. I told him again, those spaces weren't for that purpose. And that I would make sure no one I knew would buy anything from him. That part is a hollow threat, as I have forgotten where the asshole works.
This is all related to my sense that we have a an empathy gap. If you can't think of someone else, of course, you think, hey that spot is open and I am not staying. As if that is really the issue. If someone drove up who needed the spot, it wouldn't matter, would it? But more, it just says that the world is made for me, and everyone better just get out of my way.
Reminds me of this Tim O'Brien song:
Streak seems ok tonight. A little sore and still 13. Part of it is just age and that is just the deal. We are going to get a few more rugs for him to minimize his slipping.