The News Tribune logo

Monday, October 20, 2008

Cars Don't Happen. People Do.

I am not the type to commit violence. I am not saying that I don’t have those thoughts zoom through my head. I am just saying I never act. So when I make a few calls to make sure I have someone to bail me out of jail. Well, then those violent thoughts are taking me over.

In Tacoma we regularly come across the driver who never signals, the driver who cuts you off, the driver who swerves, and just about every other bad driver there is. We adapt. We learn to be one step ahead of that predatory driver and we make due on our harsh Tacoma roads. Most of us pass this task with flying colors. Others are not so fortunate.

I tend to be a little more cautious when I drive. Growing up I never liked cars. I never liked the damage they cause. I have acquaintances that have ended up in accidents and I have taken their experiences and added them to my mental lesson book. Like “Never trust a signal”. I have a friend of a friend who was T-boned when she trusted a turn signal on a car. I have been rear-ended when another car was trying to go around me when I was turning left. Now, I make sure know one can fit around me especially when I am allowing others to cross the street.

So today when I was walking in a parking lot I watched all the cars I walked behind. Made sure it was safe to push the cart I had my daughter and groceries in. Unfortunately, I did not hear this one cars engine. It was not until I made it halfway behind the car that I realize it started moving and had no intention of stopping. I backed my cart up quickly and managed to get the part of the cart with my daughter in it out of the way. As for the rest of the cart, well it was hit. Not only was it hit, but the car kept moving. By the time to car stopped the cart was against the back door of the car. I was pissed. I was at the point of wanting to kick the car. All that anger was getting the best of me. The driver rolled down her window and tried to apologize, but I was not having it. If I was in a cartoon you would have seen steam coming out of my ears. Before she could finish I told her to move in the most impolite way and waved my hand around and kept myself from balling it up into a fist and hitting something. I made it home talked to my unofficial councilor and slowly came off my intense adrenalin rush. I almost lost all self control because one driver was not paying attention and could have done some harm to my eight month old daughter. On any other normal shopping trip my five year old daughter would be walking between the cart and the parked cars. Today I just happened to allow her to walk with a friend of mine to their car.

Cars are privileges not rights. If you cause enough harm you can have that taken away. Why can’t we just be responsible with our rights and not abuse them. I don’t drive recklessly, but that does not mean I am safe. On our Tacoma roads and our Tacoma parking lots we are never safe. So take this experience to heart and open your senses and eyes just a little more. Maybe you can save yourself or someone else slowing down to the speed limit. Maybe you can stop someone from hurting someone else by reporting them. Do not drive if you have been drinking. Do not drive if you are too tired. Do not speed in school zones. Just drive they way you would want your child’s friend to drive if your child was in their car.


JosephMcG said...

I absolutely love your sense of humor... "when I start thinking about who will bail me out..." and I thought, as I read about the car hitting your cart..."well, that's the way a mother would act... my mom would take on anybody who even looked like he was going to harm me...
and fearing myself as a driver or other drivers... you are right... before I step off the curb, when I am walking on the street, I look every which way twice to make sure some speeder has not just turned on to the street, cellphoned, tuned out, and turning right my way... love your energy and your concern

(and you have the potential to be one strong preacher)

Anonymous said...

I went back to the store today with the same friend and she thought she saw the car again. She looked and me and said, "I have my crow bar in my van." I had to explain to her that is wasn't the car. My sense of humor tends to rub off on people.