The snarl of a high performance engine with a barely restricted exhaust system announced the explosive arrival of a mostly red Audi coupe ripping around a curve and launching into the passing zone right at me. The low-slung car flashed past my knee as the driver flung it forward in a desperate maneuver to get around the car in front of him and get back into his lane before the oncoming car -- that could actually hurt him -- got too close.
The finger I gave him was reflexive and perfunctory. I would hope he never saw it, since the flame-brained passing job he was doing should have commanded his whole attention. If I registered at all, it was as a peripheral flash of color. Had he for any reason wavered outward I would have been a much bigger splash of a darker color, much more centrally located in his field of view. But hey: no contact, no foul, right?
I'm sure the guy driving toward him had some choice words and a gesture or two as well. It was close.
Just another day on Route 28. No doubt the scene is duplicated on countless other roads. And when I was younger, with a scrotum that weighed heavily on the accelerator pedal, I performed a few similar maneuvers that I'd rather forget. Then again, the remembrance of transgression and the chagrin that goes with it are useful tools to reinforce efforts to improve. This assumes one reaches a level of enlightenment where shame becomes possible. From there it's a short trip to where you can have fun without risking manslaughter.