rabid dog

He came at her, snarling and slobbering. Mary held her ground and prayed. Spit flew from his jowls as he shook his head.

Even if he hadn't been slobbering like that, the man coming towards her resembled a bull dog. He had the wrinkly face and the jowls, along with the girth.

Something had pushed this man over the edge. Surely it couldn't have been her, could it?

Mary looked back on what had let up to this encounter. She had been minding her own business, strolling down the coffee aisle trying to select a blend. Wegman's had an extensive coffee section so it was no easy feat to pick just one bag. She could pick two but since Mary was trying to be more financially responsible she was limiting herself to one. When she was near the end of the aisle, the incident occurred. The man rounded the corner out of nowhere, smashing into her cart.

It was true enough that she wasn't looking ahead of her but instead looking at the coffees. But molasses ran up hill faster than she was moving and the aisle was empty other than the two of them. He could have avoided her easily. At the end of the day, neither had been paying attention.

From what she could tell, nothing in his cart was broken. An apple that he had perched on the seat where a child should go had bounced out of the cart during the collision and that seemed to be the source of his dismay. At least, that's what he spent the most time shouting about. It didn't look badly damaged to her; it hadn't smashed to the floor and when he'd picked it up, she hadn't seen any massive dents. Yes it was annoying to go back and get another apple but surely this was a bit of an overreaction.

Mary continued to nod contritely as he screamed expletives at her, having moved on from the apple to how inconsiderate and idiotic she was. Mary wasn't his only target though--the man seemed to believe everyone in the store to be inconsiderate and idiotic.

She reflected on an incident several days earlier that she'd witnessed. An SUV had attempted to squish into a fourth of a car length long space in between the Prius and the Maxima in front of her. When the Prius didn't allow the SUV room to enter, the driver of the SUV had honked and gestured angrily, seemingly blaming the Prius driver for their own poor driving and impatience. The SUV kept pace with the Prius, honking and gesturing the whole time. She was beginning to wonder if the driver of the Prius had felt like she did now.

Finally, the man's tirade drew to a close. He was inches away from her by then and whirled to stalk back towards his cart. Mary stayed put, staring intently at the coffees, while he left the aisle, almost colliding with another car in the process and cursing that shopper as well.

As she stared at the coffees, Mary began to wonder if a rabid dog knew it was rabid.

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