So I was going to post a quick blurb about this on facebook and then realized it was a lot more, shall we say emotionally charged than a few lines on facebook could express.
Plus, it was taking a lot more than a couple lines in my status area.
So here is a slightly longer, emotionally charged (read: pissed off) blurb about an experience I had about 15 minutes ago.
AJ got a new bike for his birthday (did I ever post about that? probably not). We decided to put the training wheels back on his old bike and see if Ryan liked it. We did, and she did. So we went and got some paint stripper and some spray paint to make it her bike. She chose purple.
Today I decided to get it done. I scraped off all the factory stickers, took off the front wheel so I could also replace the tube, stripped the paint, sanded it with steel wool, rinsed it, let it dry and then covered the handlebars, gears, etc and taped it up with painters tape.
I was just finishing up checking it over and making sure nothing was peaking out that shouldn't be painted and that it was completely dry. As I go to stand up a car drives by and stops in front of the apartment next door to us. There had been this guy at the building across from me most of the time I had been working on the bike. It was that guy. He gets out of his car and walks up and hands me a card for his computer repair business and makes a random comment about my 'fun project'. I say some nothing comment like, 'yep, its getting there'. He then says 'So you're going to paint it right?' I quickly tell the whole color switch from one kid to the other and so forth. So he says, 'When you go to paint it you may want to put it over on the grass or something.'
For a split second between the two of us you could hear crickets. But inside my head all I heard was the rushing of heated blood and a constant screaming.
Thank you, Mr. I Don't Live Here but Happen to be in the Neighborhood Fixing Someone's Computer so I May as Well Share My Manly Wisdom with this Lowly Little Woman. I'd never thought of that. I guess I just assumed that if I wished really hard and asked politely the paint would stick to the bike and not the ground. I'm just out here sweating my a$$ off, stumbling along hoping that a computer repair man would come tell me what I was doing wrong. (where is that darn sarcasm button!?!) Grrrrrr...
All I wanted to do was glare daggers at this guy and tell him to go 'F' himself after I had finished ripping him a new a$$-hole. But, I am a lady after all, I just said 'Yes, I have a drop cloth that I put down.' Ultra polite and everything. But apparently he wasn't done letting me know he knew more than I did about painting a bike. So he says, 'Just be careful of over spray too.' I looked around, although I knew where everyone was parked, since they are my neighbors. There were three cars, the closest of which was mine and it was across the road at least 40 feet away and there wasn't a thought of a breeze in the air, I looked back at him. I guess he realized I was loosing my patience and he was being an idiot because he was already half way back to his car. I didn't say another word and went back to my work.
Needless to say I finished painting the bike in about 10 minutes. I didn't get any paint on the road or on anyone's car or myself for that matter. I even carried that little 16" bike back into the garage all by myself when the lawn guys started coming by with the leaf blowers. And I didn't even need to be told by a man that little bits of dirt could stick to the still tacky paint.
It's one thing to want to be helpful. It is a whole other monster to stick your nose into someone elses business. It's not like I was out there in a mini skirt and stilettos shrieking every time the big bad scary screw driver broke one of my nails or if I got grease from the chain on myself. There are few things in this world that irk me as much as a situation like this does. Being treated like an idiot because I'm a woman and being talked down to like I'm a three year old. Those are two big ones.
Well, there is my, much too long for facebook, rant about the idiot I encountered today. No picture of the bike yet since it's still drying.
Today I am thankful that I live in a country and a time in history that I, as a woman, can be so outspoken when I feel I have been insulted or treated unfairly and not have to worry about the consequences of doing so.