Went out to dinner at the mall tonight. P.F. Chang's. A place I had heard was good. To me, it was alright. Just okay. The waiter was nice. The place was pretty. The food was so-so. I wish we had made food at home. I get that a lot when after visiting a chain. There's an aftertaste to those places like a cookie made with Crisco instead of butter. I regret eating that cookie and I regret having spent so much money for an average meal.
After dinner we walked a mall packed with people carrying giant bags. I got separated from my family. I watched the girls and my wife walk ahead and thought, "I don't want to be here." I just wanted to get out. Nothing there was for me.
We left, passing through a throng smokers gathered at the exit door. Traffic in the lot and on Solar Street was crazed and Route 81 was stopped with people going to Monster Truck Jam, an event that makes the mall feel heavenly.
I needed to move out of an exit-only lane and put on my blinker so that I could ease over. The person behind me accelerated, honked, and cut us off. It seemed rude and nasty. So I rolled down my window and flipped her off just so I too could be rude and nasty. She told me to go fuck myself and threw the bird right back at me.
It took a very slow half mile to calm down from it. Then I regretted having reacted to her.
I wanted to blame the lackluster meal, mall, or traffic, but it was my choice and I regret it. What a waste of energy. There are better things for me to do. I'm not looking to find her and apologize but I don't want to run her off the road either. There are middle grounds. I'll go there.
I'll avoid the mall and chain restaurants for a while. There are only so many days I get, only so many meals to eat, and I don't want to waste time in a mall, eating at P.F. Chang's, or getting angry at traffic. There are better ways to spend my days.