If only you would do what I tell you…

16 Apr

Some people call me bossy. (You know who you are.) Maybe they’re right.

This is *exactly* what I looked like.

Today I was standing in Thomas Circle trying to cross traffic when I heard sirens blaring. An ambulance was bearing down on the circle, hellbent for leather, and the traffic was gridlocked. The ambulance driver tried to pull a slick trick and bypass traffic to get to an inner-lane of the circle, but ended up stuck, with only his horn to lean on.

Fewer than 20% of cars in the District are tagged with DC plates on a weekday, so there’s a solid 80% of drivers who (presumably) crap their pants when faced with a traffic circle. Even savvy DC drivers sometimes go slack when faced with navigating a circle, what with its flashing arrows and tricky yield signs. Add in a frenzied ambulance and expect IQs to plumment as  otherwise intelligent people to freeze in terror.

That’s what happened as I sat there. Like an American speaking to a foreigner, the ambulance just got louder and more repetitive with its horn as it tried to convey the urgency of its situation. The other drivers looked left and right and gestured at other cars as if THEY were the problem, unwilling to defy traffic signals.

And suddenly, my Type-A obsession with efficiency kicked in. I couldn’t stand it. It was ulcer-forming to watch everyone sit there like pick-up sticks, frightened to be the first to move. I stepped into traffic and began directing it. I held up my hand, stopping cars that had a green light. I waved on the cars with the red light (behind which the ambulance was stuck). I pointed where, exactly, cars needed to move to create an alley. I looked like I should be landing planes at National.

Miraculously, everyone obeyed me. No one tried to run me over and people actually seemed to welcome instruction. In short order, it was under control and we’d carved out a path for the ambulance. As it slid through, the driver gave me a thumbs-up.

At last, vindication. Now if only I could’ve filmed that moment to share with my boss: see what happens when people follow my direction? Live are saved. Accidents are avoided. And a famished EMT crew makes it to Safeway in time for the hot donuts. I’ll say it again: being bossy isn’t all bad.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: