As Jeff and I walked down Newark Ave., we passed a man who was tossing a paper coffee cup into the street. "That's not cool!!" I said to Jeff. Jeff, knowing me a little too well, warned, "okay, don't start anything..."
But I was too enraged. "Hey, that's not the trashcan!" I called out to him, just as he was entering a store.
He looked back in surprise. "Well... uh..." he stammered. "It wasn't my cup! These people! They leave their trash in front of my store!"
I immediately backed down and said, "Sorry! Sorry! I thought it was yours."
If only I'd had 10 more seconds to collect my thoughts, though, because no, he was not at all justified, even if Newark Ave. does seem to be a trash magnet and it must be frustrating having a business there. I should have replied, "As unpleasant as it may be, when I find litter in front of my building, I pick it up and put it in the TRASH, not in the street."
Instead I ranted at poor Jeff the whole rest of our walk. "Hey wait," I said to him. "Why did you tell me not to start anything? Do I embarrass you?" He said that no, he was afraid I might get into a confrontation I didn't want to be in. I do admit that I felt a little more ballsy about yelling at a man with Jeff by my side.
(Business starts with a B and is between Coles and Jersey.)