I used to have a sense of social justice that I acquired from my mother; I held the belief that people should be treated equally by the system in which they live—regardless of race, gender, creed, religion, or any aspect of their identity. My mom was into this stuff. She would always talk about how everyone deserves social justice. I really bought into it for a long time, but that was all before the Corvette man.
The Corvette man changed how I saw the world. It all started when my mom was driving twelve-year-old me home from the mall. While we were heading home, a man driving a bright red convertible Corvette darted into our lane. He wasn’t aiming to hit us; he had just missed a turn and decided the best way to get where he wanted to go was to completely disobey traffic laws.
My mom slammed on her horn, threw out her middle finger, and yelled ‘asshole’ as loud as she could. Corvette man heard all of this ruckus. I expected him to do one of two things: 1) Shamefully avoid eye contact as he continued his illegal turn 2) Make the same noises of anger and frustration in response.
He took another approach though. He smiled, waved, and kept on going in the wrong lane. My mom kept screaming about how much of an asshole Corvette man was. “He thinks he’s so fucking special because he’s in a Corvette, tiny dick having asshole!” my mom snarled.
Despite my mom’s rage over the Corvette man’s reckless driving, I was downright impressed with his actions. Where most people would be considerate to strangers, he was completely absorbed with his own needs. Where most people would hide in shame after wronging another, he seemed to be outright proud.
If only we could all be so shamelessly selfish and terrible to other people. Sure, it endangers the lives and wellbeing of those around us, but does it really matter when you don’t care? Empathy is overrated and, let’s face it, has never gotten anybody anywhere.
What’s that word for when you do anything you want with absolutely no regard for anyone’s interests but your own? Oh yeah, “awesome.” I bet Corvette man is still awesome, and I hope I’ve taken his lessons to heart and made an awesome life for myself, one that let’s me drive a Corvette into oncoming traffic and into a group of pedestrians. After all, if people wanted to be empathetic and decent then shouldn’t they recognize and support my decision to not be empathetic and decent?