1.10.2005

the day of the note on the windsheild may be behind us.....

times have changed and not for the better
there was a time when a person stuck to their word... when people could be trusted
people just did the "right" thing
it seems that those days are behind us
sure there have always been a few shifty or sketchy people
for the most part I tended to believe that people would choose right over wrong
not so sure that I am willing to expect such behavior from people of the modern age
at least in the city

the notion of a note on the windshield is behind us.....

it is funny
people will do things that they know are wrong.... they continue in that direction just the same
empathy is lost...
people do not behave in the fashion that they expect others to behave
it seems that most people are selfish and inconsistent

some time last week my wife's car was scratched
well, more that scratched... scrapped up pretty bad
a long deep indentation about three quarters of the length of the passenger side of her VW Passat wagon
the scrape started again after the rear wheel well
this person was most definitely driving with the braille method
they may have been deaf as well as blind as I am confident that such contact would have been seen, felt, and HEARD!

what makes things worse is that Lisa just had some body work done on her car two weeks prior
her car was looking pretty close to show room new...
until someone went ahead and pulled out the claw of Freddy Krugger and dragged their metal hand down her fresco green family wagon

what ever happened to the note?
this person must have known that this happened
no one can be that dumb to their surroundings
this is beyond an incidental tap of bumper to bumper
or
the unavoidable occassional opening of the car door in the cramped parking space
this is a case of HIT AND RUN
minor as it may be
it is HIT AND RUN just the same
as well as a complete avoidance of common courtesy and the right thing to do!

so what is the ethic these days?
well
there have been many presidents since the fable of George Washington and the chopping down of a cherry tree
since then the rules have been changed
Republicans and Democrats alike.... everyone is innocent untill they are caught
even once caught there is denial and denial and then some more denial
all until good lawyers and tricky language let them walk clean
it is up to the public or the prosecution to find the evidence of wrong doing
until then.... the behavior will continue

there is no justification
there is no rationalization
okay.... getting side tracked.... this rant is about us common folks and our day to day activities
not about the president's misleading the people about weapons of mass distruction or the definition of sexual behavior

if damage is done
those who have done the damage should pay for the repairs
the age or condition of the damaged vehicle does not effect the decision making process


let me put it like this....

if a man has a butt ugly wife.... is it okay for you to crack her in the lip and punch her in the eye?
she was ugly to begin with... what is a little more ugly?

so.... when the people hit my 1984 Toyota Landcruiser or my 1966 Chevy Nova before that...

these people should have left notes or at least some pocket change
they knew they were wrong
there was no justifying their actions
just cause they were old beaters did not mean they could beat them up some more
it was all of those incidental dents caused by noteless strangers that made my beaters so beaten up!
these cars too would be show room new if it were not for the whiskey dents and drunken frat boy mishaps that happened in the night as I slept and as my car sat parked on the city streets

most definitely there is a fly on the wall that could tell the tale of someone sheepishly leaving the scene of the crime

only problem.... I don't speak fly

just because your car was hit and no one left a note
does not mean that when you hit some poor soul's car that you get to flee the scene
as your momma told you.... "two wrongs.... blah... blah.... blah.... blah!"
such actions perpetuate the cycle
and
end up punishing not the person who hit your car some time ago... but the person whose car you hit

on several occassions when walking my dogs I have had the glory of witnessing such an act
a crappy driver with a crappy car and a crappy sense of ethics
with their car that is all fucked up from their inability to drive
then they try some basic three point turn that turns into a t-bone into some poor smucks parked car
they get out
and leave a dummy note
usually a piece of paper without a scribble
in which case I take out my pen and write the correct information in the place of their disappearing ink

sometimes KARMA is not immediate enough
sometimes KARMA needs a little push

do the right thing....
leave a note
if you are lucky it will rain and the ink will bleed
or use your worst chicken scratch hand writing
or
do exactly what you would want someone to do if they hit your car....
and
you know that is not to just drive away!

enough with this crappy as rant for now....

okay
as I wait on hold for this call I will FLASHBACK with this story....
remember this occurred 20 years ago and I was not the one behind the wheel!

and that I am less than perfect

one night as a senior in high school I was out for ice cream after a night of drinking
or
perhaps out for ice cream during a night of drinking
either way there was drinking and there was ice cream
if I remember correctly it was a double date scenario
Les and I were out with two cute little preppy girls from St. Andrews high school, private school girls (les being a boy not a girl, although it would be a more interesting story if I were on a date with three girls... one of them named Les)
we were the not so bad public school bad boys
les had the very hot short brook shields type
while my meg ryan type was behind the wheel
everything happened pretty fast for a slow speed collision
as my meg ryan look alike slowly backed her car out of the space she managed to back right into a black BMW that was for some reason parked right behind her parent's Honda Accord
as easy as that
no loud sounds
no grand drama
she just backed into the door of this black car that could not be so easily seen in the dark of night
especially through the eyes of an inexperienced teen age driver with alcohol on her breath
the victim was irrate
he leaped from his car and started dancing around frantically

there were gestures and statements
and accent filled anger
when les and I got out of our car to try and calm him down
he rapidly got back into his car with the windows rolled up and the doors locked where he then wrote down the tag information and description of the Honda Accord
then he parked his car.... got out... shouted that he was going to call the police!

this was the age before cell phones... he went to the nearest pay phone
I know... hard to imagine

our minds raced

would we get expelled?
would we still get into the college of our choices?
what would our parent's say?

I am already grounded... will this be double secret probation?
is this evening over?
does this mean that there will be no late night "hook up?"


then les took actions into his own hands
les walked over to the BMW which was now unmaned
opened the passanger side door

reached in
popped open the glove box
and
then removed the paper that the tag information had been written on
humorously enough the information was written on the MVA Driver's Test handbook

with the tag information in hands the meg ryan type was back at the wheel and cautiously driving away
just four blocks away our sighs of relief became heart pounding panic as we saw the flashing red and blue of officer friendly

it was Chevy Chase's finest
as soon as the car stopped Les jumped out and said he would handle it
just in case those of us that remained in the car were all stuffing pennies under our tongues just in case we were issued breath-a-lizer tests
in moments Les was back in the car
being a Chevy Chase resident he knew how to handle the Chevy Chase Police
as it turns out Les had foolishly torn up the handbook and tossed it out the window
we had been pulled over for littering
not for drunk driving
or worse yet.... hit and run

another close call
another narrow escape

the specifics of the rest of the evening are not significant
but I will tell it this way....
yes, we did hook up.... and I was fantastic!

(just kidding of course... I am sure I was a foolish gentlemen that walked my date to the front door, maybe swapped copper penny flavored spit, then went home to Friday Night Videos and the Victoria Secrets catalog*)

*that last addition was put in there as I am more than confident that people have better things to do that read my BLOG and
when they read my blog
my antics in high school may not be what they are looking for

Final Words
every situation will have its list of excuses why leaving a note would be a bad idea
but
the final measure should be, "what would you want someone to do if they hit your car under the same or similar set of circumstances? would you understand or agree with their set of excuses and your having to pay for their mistakes?"
okay then....
do the right thing
leave a note
pay for the damages
or better yet
don't hit anyone else's car




2 comments:

riderx said...

I hear ya'. a few months back I come out of the deli, find a note on my car: "Rubbed your bumper. Jen 555-555-1234". Rubbed was a generous description, dented and cracked the chrome was more accurate. Not the end of the world, no big deal. Until I called. And called. And called again. Bogus number, static like I was trying to connect to the mother ship. Someone must have witnessed the event, otherwise, why leave a note?

gwadzilla said...

oh.... jen....
I know her
met her in a bar
thought we were hitting it off
she gave me her number
I called a few times
but everytime I called all she wanted to do was talk about THE WEATHER
never let me get a word in
never let me change the subject
never listened to a work I said
never stopped talking about THE WEATHER

then I learned she gave me her work number
guess she thought she would have time to talk
but was wrong
must be a nice job telling people the weather over the phone each day