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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Brief Encounter

Coming out of the station this evening I was confronted by a young man coming the other way. Track suit. Hood up. I know you have the picture. There was limited room between a lamp post and a parked car and for some reason I didn't let him through first. Consequently he had to check his step for about a third of a second. I could see he had made a comment. I took off my headphones and said "I'm sorry?"
He turned and said, with some venom, "watch where you're fucking going!" He didn't mutter it. I've rarely been talked to in a more aggressive manner.
I wasn't going to start a fight. He would have killed me. I was surprised but I managed to smile and say "very nice to meet you".
He went off. It didn't go any further.
What could possess a young guy to front up like that against a middle-aged commuter in a suit? How angry is he and about what? If he can get that cross about having to check his step, in an incident that involved no physical contact whatsoever, how is he going to deal with the other small frustrations that life will put in his way? How will he react to a baby who won't sleep?