Saturday, February 25, 2012

Modern Mature Motoring

Every day on my bike ride I have one or more close calls with geezers.
  Not every bad driver is an old person, of course, but the fact is: I fear little red sports cars only a tithe as much as I fear encounters with “sensible” beige, gray or white four-doors.

I think even more than their sloth-like reaction time, even more than their turtle-like traffic creep, even more than their mole-like blindness, even more than their some kind of animal-like deafness, it's the deadly indecisiveness of eldsters that’s most frightening.  "When in doubt, DO NOTHING!" seems to be their motto.

I have mentioned in past blogs how maddening it is when Chester or Ruth is out enjoying modern mature motoring and they try to make a turn.  For some reason, and almost without fail,  they slow to nearly a stop right in the middle of that turn.  It's almost as if they 1) forget why they are turning or 2) that they think slowing to a crawl half way into a turn is as good a place as any to scout out a parking space.  Many an accident--I wager--and many a near-accident--I KNOW--has been caused by this maddening characteristic of older drivers. 

Just as they seem baffled ("confused" is the word newspapers use) when making a turn geezers seem just such so at intersections.  They pull too far into the pedestrian crossing and block the path for walkers or bikers who want to cross. And given their penchant for hitting the gas instead of the brake, none but the quick, or the dead, would venture in front of their vehicle. 

In fairness to oldsters, most all age groups pull too far into crosswalks. Unlike most age groups, however, when the slow bulb finally flickers on that a bike--me--is flying along and wants to cross, these stunned seniors just seem to flash freeze. 

"Do . . . I . . . pull . . . forward?” seems to be the painfully slow mental process.  “Or . . . do . . .  I . . . back . . . up?   Or . . . maybe . . . do . . . I . . .  just . . .  sit . . . here . . .  and . . . stare . . .  like . . . a . . . fossil . . . frozen . . . in . . . stone . . . and . . . make . . . this . . . stupid . . . idiot . . . go . . .  out . . . into . . . traffic . . . to . . . get . . . around . . . me?" 

zzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzz . . . . . . . . .  

Actually, I may be giving these old folks too much credit--they may not be thinking anything at all. 

No doubt in my mind that these individuals—men and women--could not pass a driving test and are obviously not fit to drive.  And—no surprise here---these ancients are incapable of even riding a bike safely.  When I encounter them on their bicycles (often those three-wheel types) or when they are simply walking in the bike lanes it seems to take forever for them to move in the proper direction. I clink my bell and if there is no reaction (usually the case) I repeat “On Your Left!” with increasing decibelage until I get a reaction.  Often, like today, yesterday and the day before, I never do get a reaction and am forced to slow or drive off the sidewalk because these living dead are . . .  well, dead to the world.  I would really like to just yell, “Get the fork over!"    Often, there is this look of mild-to-moderate irritation and annoyance written on the faces of these people as you pass; obviously, they consider that YOU are the one in the wrong and that YOU should get over and not make them move and “Why are you moving so damn fast through MY world anyway?”

Down here in Florida at Senior Sentral, one never assumes anything.  One must be on one's toes 24/7.  Never assume while walking in a store parking lot here in the Sunshine State that a car backing up sees you.  If it's a geez behind the wheel, odds are they do not and WILL NOT EVER see you until cops pull them over one or two hours later and show them your lifeless body laying in the parking lot.  Also, never assume just because you are on an interstate or driving on a one-way street that everyone is copacetic and purring along the right way.  With a million senile seniors driving around here, that assumption can easily earn you a one-way ticket to the graveyard. Never assume in a bank or restaurant drive-thru that everyone understands which way is the proper way to enter and exit. 
In all likelihood, just around the corner of that building is a modern mature motorist totally "confused" and heading your way.

Funny.  Odd.  Strange.  Now that I am on the threshold of geezerhood, I seem to have less and less patience with them.


Choking the Chicken
--Up the bay, over Punta Gorda way last Thursday, seems hot sex was hard on the mind of one Wallace Wendel Wesley (uh-oh, there's that middle name again--Lee Harvey Oswald, John Wilkes Booth, John Wayne Gacy, James Earl Ray--something bad a comin').  And so, when the 61-year-old spotted a six-year-old walking by his drive-way, WWW made his move.  Dashing outside, this frenzied miscreant unzipped his pants, pulled out his whang, then engaged in some vigorous hand sex in front of the child.  Fortunately, an alert neighbor spotted the wretch whacking away and yelled for him to stop.

When cops arrived, WWW denied the charge; insisted that he was an innocent man.  Both the neighbor and the little girl disagreed with the gentleman, however, and nailed his pervert ass to the barn door.  Today, WWW sits in the local lockup w/o bond.  Okay.  Good.  Great.  Fabulous.  Now, if someone will just slip a hundred bucks to some thug on the inside to put this moral meatball down, then a bad story will truly have a happy ending. 


Caricature of the Day