Honk If You Wanna Creep Faster

| St Paul, MN, USA | Friendly | October 14, 2016

(There’s a man in a blue van that I keep seeing everywhere. At first I think nothing of it, but then I realize I really AM seeing him everywhere: the store, when I go to work, when I go home, and he blares his horn for a solid minute until I look at him, only for him to yell out the window at me. I cautiously approach him one day, thinking maybe I know him somehow. I should note that I have a pretty memorable appearance: I’m a 6ft 1in female with blue hair and five tattoos, two of which are visible with short sleeves, so there’s a very low chance of mistaken identity.)

Me: “Um, hi. Was that you honking at me just now? I was just wondering, do we know each other?”

Man: “No, I just wanted to say hi.”

Me: “Oh. Okay, well, if that’s all just wave and if I see you, I’ll wave back, okay? No need for all the honking.”

Man: *yelling* “I WAS JUST SAYING HI. I SAY HI TO EVERYBODY!”

Me: “O-okay, but it’s starting to freak me out. Please just wave and stop honking at me. You rolled up on the curb, blaring your horn at me the other day, and nearly hit another car. It’s not safe to either of us.”

Man: “I DON’T HURT NOBODY. I ALWAYS SAY HI!”

(After that, he starts running red lights to follow me as much as he can, honking the entire time. It gets to the point that I’m ready to file a police report for stalking, but it turns out he lives in the senior building right next to my office, and I’m unsure what to do. I’m walking past the building on my way home, wearing headphones, and I see him pointing at me.)

Man: “—got mad at me! I just say hi and she told me to stop! Young people have no respect!”

Me: *angry now* “Because you hold up traffic just so I’ll turn my head! You’ve been running red lights to drive beside me and yell and honk at me! I see you when I’m at work, when I go to the store, and when I’m going home. I only asked you to stop honking at me so much and I was trying to be nice about it, but now I’m going to the police first thing in the morning and filing a restraining order on you.”

Old Woman: *to man* “Wait a minute here. Do you even know her?”

Man: “No, I—”

Old Woman: “So you don’t know her, you’ve been following her all around downtown ‘cause you’re mad that she asked you to stop honking at her, and you’re complaining about all these traffic tickets you’ve been getting? ‘Cause you want her to look at you, I bet. I’ve seen you driving all crazy and this is why!” *whacks with cane* “Boy, I don’t know what your mama ever taught you, but if a woman asks you to leave her alone, YOU LEAVE HER ALONE.” *whacks again* “Apologize to her.”

Man: “I… I’m sorry.”

Old Woman: “Now then, young lady, if you wanna file against him, my son works at [Downtown Police Station]. His name is [Name] and he’ll be there tomorrow all day. You ask for him and tell him his mama sent you, and you best believe I’ll be talking to him myself.”

(After one more whack with her cane, Old Woman shoos the man away. I did go to the police the next day, just to see what could be done, and lo and behold the woman was there! She had the man’s full name and I had several pictures and videos on my phone of him following me. The man had to pay all of his tickets in full and got his license revoked. I occasionally see him sitting inside the lobby of his building, but according to my new friend, he isn’t allowed outside until I am either in my office or have gone home for the day. I even got an apology from him a few months later. Who says you can’t teach an old man new tricks?)

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