Diary of Lisa Taylor, reluctantly 42 (and a half)

Or.. 'f.ck me I'm forty.. two.. and a half', though can look 38 on a - not so deluded - good day. Or 'How to reconcile a well experienced mind trapped in a still - but for how long? – youthful body.' Don't have the 30somethings angst/problems, neither have the resigned (?) ageing baby-boomers in safe family territory outlook yet. Here's how I cope, one day all sexy women will get old... but never invisible. © Lisa Taylor 2005/6/7/8/9. Jeez.. so much for the 42 and-a-half delusion

Thursday, June 25, 2009

25 June - Road rage & Street Life

Not often I find myself at a loose end one luncthime in Notting Hill but on one such hot day, Toph and I are happy to discover that the lunchtime deal at Rosso Pomodoro is indeed a good deal. So we're sat outside, behind us another table for 2 with 2 nice young men.
We have a clear view of the street and the constant ebb and flow of drivers parking on the strip (a silver Bentley with Seal's lookalike and Heidi Klum lookalike crossing the road to Osteria Basilico is the best sighting) and parking attendants patrolling.

This driver starts to park her small BMW in between two cars in front of us and she rear ends a nice Audi. Then she moves forward, and rear ends again. So we're really watching her as she manoeuvres and does it again. At this point the chap beind us gets up, goes to her open window and tells her er... are you not noticing you're hitting the car behind you? He clearly gets short shrift. As she exists her car, the bumped car lady owner arrives so the chap (and us) tells her to check her car.
Bad driver woman, 30 odd, long straight hair, expensive handbag, starts loudly remonstrating that she didn't do anything, just touched it and no damage. That may well be the case, I touch other car bumbers often when I park too, but it's her arrogance that gets on our nerves instantly because the correct form in this scenario is to say 'Very sorry, I apologise, but look, I didn't scratch your car or if I did, let's look'. So we say 'You were about to bump her for the fourth time, that's not the way to park! and if bumpee needs a witness we're here to vouch you did' . So she turns on us and says what kind of witness would a couple of lunchtime drunks be? I take excepion to this since by now we have our bill on the table and it's one Peroni for the boy and one glass of red for me. She goes on being arrongat whilst bumpee takes out pen and paper to write down her registration. Driver then storms off and her words to us are 'While you're at it why don't you call me a Paki as well?'

This is so extrordinary that I have no idea where it came from. Up to that point she just looked middle estern and dark skinned and possibly one of those bitches that uses her £600 handbag to let you know she can buy the cashmere sweater in all the colours she wants in Harrods, but my brain did not offer any other defining features. I pick myself up fast enough to say 'No, Lady, you're just a regular ill-mannered cow' which I'm not sure she's even heard but at least draws a laugh from the 2 other diners.

I turn to Toph who's also shocked at the accusation and wondering how all this could have turned into a fight. I feel super sorry for her and whatever she's endured in the past by way of racism, but I also take it as a warning that people like her may use the racial card to their advantage if they want to. Had there been nobody else on that strip (well before this point the restaurant manager was also following the drama) , it would have been her word against ours.

It occurs to me with the usual time lapse on timing, that a better response would have been 'Really? You're a Paki? I thought you came from Sweden or Planet Bitch?' No, that's not funny either. Am sure there are comedy repartees I could find on the net to store up for this kind of event in future.


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