(50 seconds to read)
I was parallel parking this morning and a woman was sitting in a new shiny BMW behind where I was parking. I got out and she beckoned me. I thought I had boxed her in.
“Did I box you in?” I asked. She had long black hair, and fine cheek bones, she was expressionless, eyes hidden behind her sunglasses. She answered me no, but as I moved off she said something else. I couldn’t hear, so I approached her. “What?” I asked.
“You tapped my car,” she said. My heart sank and my eyes grew wide. “Oh no,” I put my hands to my face. “Really?
“Yes,” but she was weirdly calm. “It’s fine,” she paused, then said, “We all need to get tapped sometimes.” I nodded warily, and moved off, worried and uncomfortable.
I thought about it later, after settling into my chair in the cafe, opening my laptop to work. I thought how she was being petty, seeking attention, and I grew angry…Then I stopped and thought, She was seeking attention…from me. “Everyone needs to get tapped sometimes”? She was hitting on me. And I had totally missed it.
I missed it because I was worried about myself. Giving others the attention and love they are seeking, and deserve, this requires confidence. Which is the opposite of fear. The fear that filled me when someone told me I had just bumped their spotless, current model BMW.