My Nerves Are Shot, chapter 947

My nerves are really shot lately. I’m really on edge. On the verge of snapping. And I recognize the symptoms. I’m one of those people with a vast reservoir of anger boiling away inside me. So I have to be careful that I don’t explode. . .

So anyways, there’s this mob of kids that blast back and forth on their skateboards all day long on lower Sproul Plaza (don’t these kids have to go to SCHOOL anymore nowadays??). It’s annoying, because you take your life in your hands every time you try to walk across the plaza. But I recognize that kids need a constructive way to blow off all their excess energy. So what the hell. . .

But yesterday I was walking across the plaza and this kid on a skateboard came out of nowhere, barreling right at me at full speed, and I had to jump out of his way just to keep from getting hit full blast by him and his damn skateboard. “YOU STUPID FUCKING IDIOT!! I said, as he whizzed by me. The kid circled back on his skateboard and came up to me and said, “Sorry. My bad.” So I immediately felt bad about the whole thing (I’m instantly placated by an apology). On top of that, he was just a little guy, wearing big horn-rimmed glasses. Which made me feel even worse. So I said: “No. My bad. I shouldn’t have yelled at you. Have some fun out here.” And walked off.

But then today I’m having my morning coffee at this nearby patio on the plaza. The patio is fenced in, so that keeps most of the skateboarders out. And the spot is mostly used for students to read or work on their laptops. But this morning this high school kid comes in there carrying his skateboard, and sets up RIGHT behind me where I’m sitting. He plugs his cellphone into an outdoor outlet nearby, and while he’s charging his cellphone he’s prattling away to someone on his cellphone — LOUDLY — just about 2 feet away from where I’m sitting. So his voice is rattling away inside my skull. If that wasn’t bad enough, while he’s talking he’s standing on his skateboard, swaying back and forth, doing some kind of “trick” that causes his skateboard to come LOUDLY crashing to the ground every 30 seconds or so. If the noise wasn’t bad enough, there’s the very real possibility that the skateboard is going to go flying out of control and hit me at any second. So, after about the 10th CLANK I turn around and glare at him (the ole Ace Backwords Face of Doom) hoping he gets the message. . . But no. He continues, oblivious, loudly clanking and crashing away. So I turn to him and say: “WOULD YOU STOP CRASHING THAT THING RIGHT BEHIND ME!! THIS ISN’T A SKATE PARK. PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO READ AND STUDY HERE GO OUT THERE IF YOU WANT TO CRASH AROUND!!” … The kid makes some wise-ass crack to me. And I’m thinking this might be leading to an ugly confrontation. But instead, he decides to unplug his skateboard and go away: “OK, I’m heading off to the ‘skate park’, OK??” he says with a smirk. And putters off. . .

To my credit, I haven’t killed anybody yet. . . Yet.

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