Which is also how I react to line-butting. You're in a convenience store, waiting in line for the cashier, and up marches a person who simply cannot be bothered with lines, a person who brushes past the rest of you ordinary civilians as though you were noxious weeds, the implication being that his particular bag of Doritos is needed at the hospital immediately for use in an emergency organ transplant.
But the form of rudeness that really, really frosts my shorts is littering. You're at the beach, and it's a beautiful day, and the world seems peaceful and pure and clean, and suddenly the afternoon stillness is shattered by the arrival of: The Swine Family. You know these people. They have a large nuclear-powered radio and enough food to supply several Canadian provinces, and they immediately transform themselves into a high-output litter machine, cranking out potato-chip bags and beverage cans and sandwich wrappers and chicken bones and critical-mass poopy diapers weighing more than the infant that generated them, all of this forming an ever-expanding Ring of Garbage, some of it blowing festively down the beach. Hey! Here's an empty Bud Light can, skittering, crablike, onto our blanket! And here's a chili-dog wrapper! With some chili still in it! Thank you, Swine Family.
And when it's time to leave, these people simply . . . leave. Just get up and walk away from what looks like the scene of a tragic Dumpster explosion. Oh, sure, there are trash cans around somewhere, but who wants to pick up all this crap? Chicken bones? Used diapers? Yuck! You could get your hands dirty! No, the thing to do, after a fun day at the beach, is to just leave your garbage where you dropped it and head on home, maybe dial some wrong numbers.
And let's talk about all you fastidious motorists out there, the ones who like to keep your cars nice and clean by throwing everything out the window. A lot of you people are so clean that you don't even want to soil your ashtray. Heck no! Why mess up a sharp-looking ashtray interior when you can use the entire planet, right? Or maybe you use your ashtray, but when it gets full, you thoughtfully dispose of the butts by . . . dumping them on the ground. Ha ha! Good thinking, you MORONIC SLIME-EXCRETING PUKEHEADS WHY DON'T YOU TAKE YOUR CIGARETTE BUTTS AND . . .
Forgive me. I get carried away. I realize that there are more serious problems in the world. It's just that littering is so unnecessary, so avoidable, so -- forgive me for waxing philosophical here -- stupid. And it's everywhere you look. Forget the streets and sidewalks. Go anywhere. Go to the most beautiful, most remote spot you know, and it'll take you two seconds to find some dirtbag's plastic six-pack holder. I hate this. But I never did anything about it except mutter and seethe. And I probably would have continued doing nothing until eventually I suffered a fatal stress-related heart attack and got buried in a grave with Slim Jim wrappers fluttering over it, except that a dramatic turning point occurred in my life, an event that transformed me from a seething mutterer into a Man of Action. This turning point -- as you may have already guessed -- was: a visit to my optometrist.
My optometrist's name is Dr. Jeffrey Jeruss, and although he looks like a normal human being (only larger), it turns out that he is fundamentally -- and I mean this as a compliment -- insane. I found this out during a routine eye examination, when Jeffrey was shining his little light into my eyeballs, making that hmmmmm noise that medical professionals are trained to make, and I happened to mention littering. Do you remember in the TV show The Incredible Hulk, when Dr. Banner used to transform himself from puny little geek Bill Bixby into the extremely wrathful, frog-colored and structurally impossible Lou Ferrigno? That's essentially what happened to Jeffrey, right there in the examination room: His neck muscles bulged out and he began stomping around, denouncing the beer-can tossers of the world and waving his eyeball light around like the Hammer of Thor.