The Angry Tomato


Another kind of parking.. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Another kind of parking..

“Peace is the only battle worth waging.”

Albert Camus


I am rarely in a situation of conflict with others, so when it happens, it’s a big deal. Why is it that when you act most like a man and stand up for your what is rightfully yours that you are most likely to be called a “bitch”?

Really, a male insult, if insults there must be, such as “asshole” would be more appropriate. I do apologize for these words, as they are rarely a part of my vocabulary, whether as a recipient or as a proponent. In fact I can’t recall having been called that before, with the exception perhaps of silly sibling disputes, in teenage years.

The other day, when I took a parking spot in the overflowing lot (guess that’s what boxing day is all about), the spot was as much mine as his. I surprised myself and went for it, seeing as it was far more accessible for me. What happened next, included my mother and I sitting in the parked car, debating if we should just give up the spot to the angry man who was yelling. Was it worth taking this spot we’d waited for for such a long time, only to fear for our own safety? We finally dared to unlock the doors and step out. More yelling. Out of shock, we apologized, but for what I’m not so sure.

As women, we often question our actions and hesitate, where many of our male counterparts might just park the car and get on with their lives. I’m sure second-guessing and pondering what is fair is a quality or fault that both men and women share, but oftentimes, I feel that women overthink things, instead of acting. In part, it helps to be a big guy stepping out of the car, rather than a small female. But should that fact dictate how I act and how I let others treat me? The entire shopping trip I kept looking around, wondering if the ‘angry man’ was nearby. I worried about the state my car would be in when I returned to the lot, and figured I ought to have taken note of his license plates.

And no, it really isn’t about parking spots or shopping; those are first world problems. The issue lies deeper. Do we live in a world where we step back and let others take our spot in fear of violence, be it verbal or physical? Is manifesting our presence perceived as a form of aggression, or is it simply having a backbone?

Perhaps it’s the because i’ve grown up mostly around male siblings and cousins. Maybe it’s because you don’t make it in medical school without thinking you’ve earned your spot. Perhaps it’s not so much a question of gender, but rather of acting instead of over – thinking. The fact is: out of principle – I would take my stand again – without hesitation.


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