Below is a chapter from Rule #2: Don’t Be an Asshat: An Official Handbook for Raising Parents and Children. Over time we will be posting most of the book, though, should this inspire you to buy a copy, we would not be offended 🙂 Posted chapters can be found in the Table of Contents.

Rule #38: Don’t flip off the truck driver (Mom)

Once upon a time there was a young woman who drove through an intersection. She found herself being followed by a tow-truck driver who clearly thought she had not properly waited her turn at the intersection. The truck was large; her car was small. The driver was large; she was not. The driver honked and yelled at her as he drove behind her. Angered by his reaction, she made a poor choice and, well, gave him the finger.

Turns out, it was not the right gift for this situation.

He then followed her, still yelling and honking. At one point, she stopped her car, thinking that perhaps she should try to talk to the driver. He stopped his truck, ran over to her car, and started pounding on the window and yelling. She drove away, and he still followed. His driving and behavior were increasingly threatening, and she had long since regretted her rash action. In the end, she did not drive home as she was intending but drove to the closest police station and stopped in front.

The driver finally drove off at that point.

The lesson: don’t let your anger bring you to do stupid, harmful, or dangerous things. I’m not saying anger should be bottled up but instead that you should let your anger stutter so you can express it in a way that doesn’t cause unnecessary damage. Anger begets anger, over and over, so consider the outcome of your actions. Channel that anger into something productive instead.

And yes, the brash, middle-finger-waving woman: Mom.


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