Instant karma

We were discussing old stuff with a couple of friends and I remembered a fond memory of old. Back when I was in university one day I was crossing the street where my girlfriend lived on the zebra crossing. Mind you, this was in the old days; when everything was new, and everyone thought the traffic rules were like the pirate code: more of a guidance than actual rules. Pedestrian crossings had no special status then; it took a really bad year of several pedestrians getting killed on these crossings for the police to really crack down on these drivers. Back then it was an act of wishful thinking to use the pedestrian crossing, rather than an expectation of having cars yield to you while you’re on the road.


A driver was apparently unsatisfied with the speed I tried to get out of his way while crossing. (It happened here.) He stopped, got out of his car, and started yelling at me, while pushing me against a tree on the promenade. He was your typical gym-rat with shaved head and polo shirt; he thought he could bully someone younger and less beefed up than he was. I was quite honestly stunned, so I could not immediately form a coherent plan of action. (Back then a lot of people had trouble checking their anger in Hungary. Perhaps it’s still the case, but I doubt it. There were several cases when people acted violently against others at the slightest- and often imagined- provocation. I myself was badly beaten up a couple of years later on the street at broad daylight which kind of fucked up my life for the next ten years or so. Having your head being used as a football apparently tend to lead to epilepsy. That’s a different story, though. Let’s get back to our bully here.)

Suddenly a bullhorn sounded. “You! You baldy! That’s right, I’m talking to you! Turn around and walk to the police car, before I come over there!”. We both looked up, and sure enough there was a police car parked right next to the bald bully’s with two policemen standing next to it grinning, one of them was talking into the loudspeaker about five meters from where we stood.

My little adrenaline-pumped hero turned mellow real fast. I was sitting on the low stone fence for a while enjoying the show while he was dressed down by the two policemen. This was one of those rare occasions when a deus ex machina got you an instant karma.


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