Friday, July 17, 2009

Hold off the Horn

I think I've mentioned here before how stupid I feel when traffic stops for no apparent reason, and then impatiently I slam on the horn trusting in the magical ability of the horn to make everyone on the road do exactly what I want. This is the worst magical power because I don't think it has ever worked. Why would someone invent a magical power that doesn't work? I don't know, that's why. After laying on the horn, I then see a police car, fire truck, or ambulance driving quickly with their lights and sirens going strong, immediately resulting in feelings of extreme idiocy for me. This is another, much more tangible magic power that works 100% percent of the time - assuming there are Twinkies in that hole to sustain me. One moment I'm feeling brash and impatient, and the next moment I want to crawl into a hole. The only other similar situation I could imagine (prior to Tuesday night) is a family of ducks or geese slowly crossing the road and bringing traffic to a screeching halt. Geese and ducks should not be such dummies. Roads are very dangerous places to go for a family walk, and the someone should consider removing parental right privileges of these very irresponsible animal parents.

Tuesday night, I was driving from softball (that fateful 0 for 3 batting performance) to Shield's Pizza in Troy, and needed to make a left turn from northbound Crooks onto westbound Maple. There is a left turn light there (one of the annoying ones that is green before traffic in your direction gets clearance and then doesn't blink after that - man I hate those), and I was stuck at the light for a couple of cycles. Finally, I was second in line and certain to make the next round when the turn arrow turned green. The person in the car in front me and I hit our respective accelerators and began the turn, when suddenly the person in front of me slammed on his breaks. I almost slammed the back of his car, angrily raised my fist in horn-honking fury, and started to move it toward the noise-making center of my steering wheel. A moment before my hand hit the horn, I saw the cause of the immediate stop - a blind person was crossing the street!

At first, I found myself a little bit angry at me for almost honking, by extension, at a blind person. Then, I found myself a little bit angry at the blind person because there is an appropriate time to cross the street, and it is not when traffic has the green crossing arrow. Then, I found myself angry at the city of Troy for not having more blind-friendly crossing signals. Finally, my anger turned toward the general concept of blindness first, for robbing people of their sight, and second, for putting me into this emotional quandary. I'm still not sure of the proper protocol for this situation - can a blind person cross the road whenever he/she is in the mood regardless of signal? I don't mean that question as a joke, but I mean, you can't just run someone over if this person is in the road, but we all have to follow similar road-crossing rules (clearly except for ducks and geese), don't we? I don't like being confused. If you're reading this and you're blind, I kindly request you do not cross the road in the face of oncoming traffic. Yes, I know what I just said.

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