An ac/dc sorta bike day, today; a gale going in, a zephyr coming out. Most cyclists, I think, prefer a day with no wind. True, one gains no advantage on a calm day; equally true, one suffers no disadvantage, either.
Downside of a strong tail wind, of course, is a strong head wind. Today, I maybe averaged 12 MPH into this hurricane east wind, but murder! I was flying on a magic carpet when I turned west. I have always dreamed of starting somewhere down in south Texas in April, then letting the south wind carry me on the back roads north to Canada. The winds blowing up the treeless plains and funneled by the Rockies would carry me along as if I were on a racing cloud. That's my idea of heaven.
Alas, many strangers to the island still see me--and all cyclists, I suppose--as moving information centers. Although I have not mentioned it lately, I have one or two such requests per month for “Which way to this beach or that beach?” “Where can we three party beasts buy beer?” or “Do you know where Donna Summers’ home is?” These lost souls stop their cars in the middle of the road, generally on a jungle curve, hold their hands out, wave their arms, then expect the cyclist to screech to a halt and give them directions. They obviously have not done much bike riding. If these folks had done much bike riding they would know just how difficult it is to regain momentum once you’ve lost it, especially if there is a strong head wind. I never stop any more, for anyone; I simply ignore ‘em. Maybe someday when they try biking these people will understand.
Rant Therapy--Honestly, a blog—and a very big blog, at that--could be devoted solely to pit bull attacks in Florida alone. Two pit bulls, appropriately named “Rage” and “Grinder,” attacked and killed a pony and a pet goat the other day; another pit bull tore a ten-year-old’s arm off; the mother who defended her child the other day against a pack of pits is back in for more surgery (“Full-Time Mom,” 5.9.13); and so on. Now, over at Daytona Beach the other day. . . .
Two fun-loving pits were out early trying to break the all-time pit bull speed record in the “Most Victims Killed or Hospitalized in the Shortest Amount of Time” category. First up, cops found 69-year-old Frank Andrisano leaning against a telephone pole, more dead than alive, spurting blood from virtually every pipe in his body. "Call the ambulance, O’Malley." Next, cops tracked the blood trail until they found 42-year-old Billy Boles on top of a utility box balancing on his last good leg (the other was nearly sawn off). "Call the ambulance, Clancey." Trailing the blood and bones a bit further, the cops found another poor dodger who had been attacked and knocked to the ground while riding his bike to work. The blood-soaked victim was barely alive and . . . well, really, this does get downright repetitive after awhile. "This is a rush order, O’Malley, call the chopper."
We could go on and on, not only with this canine crime wave, but a dozen more some such similar attacks around the state. Although Daytona was beginning to run out of ambulances and helicopters, all the victims were rushed to hospital ERs, of course; both the dogs were found and killed, of course; and, of course . . . so what? This crap goes on and on and on like the days of our lives, like the leaves of a calendar, like the cycles of the moon—full moon, half moon, new moon, pit bull; full moon, half moon, full moon, pit bull. I can just as easily be reporting tomorrow or the next day on an entire family of albino dwarfs living in the woods near Lakeland who are attacked, killed and eaten by a herd of “loose” pit bulls as easily as I can be reporting on the sunny weather—both are about as common.
I guess Harley-Davidson motorcycles are a good analogy. If most Floridians ride these outrageously loud things, whose gonna complain? Likewise, if most Florida “families” own four-legged food blenders known as pit bulls, whose agonna stop the slaughter?
Just curious. Wonder what the names of the two “great with children” killers above were? “Shredder & Sugar”? “Mauler & Mindy”? “Rager & Rosey”? “Bonnie & Clyde”?
Rage Therapy--Another pit bull, the two-legged kind, was put down yesterday here in Florida. Back before the dawn of time, convicted child molester, Elmer Carroll, 56, raped and strangled ten-year-old Christine McGowan. The dead man had been kept alive on Florida’s Life Row these past 22 years because of constant appeals and the argument that he, the convicted man, was clearly, patently, and beyond-a-shadow-of-a-doubtly, insane.
“As far as I’m concerned,” said Carroll’s pettifogging attorney, Michael Reiter, “he was mentally ill at the time of the offense. He has had mental illness all of his life.”
My question, nay, my comment, to Councilor Reiter is: “And? And your point is? So what if your client is nutz? Most of America is mentally ill, to a great, greater or a much greater degree, yet most of us don’t go around raping and killing children. I could care less if your client, this POS, that you wanted to keep breathing for another twenty-two years had bad potty training as a kid or heard (and answered) voices as an adult or believed in alien abductions or that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone or can’t count to two with his fingers or toes. His “insanity”--if that’s what maniacal lust and murder is being called these days—is even more reason to get rid of him. A pity he was not strangled in the cradle.”
Twenty-two years! 264 months! 7,920 days! 190,080 hours! 11,404,800 minutes! 684,288,600 seconds! That not only looks like a mountain of time to me but it IS a mountain of time; a mountain of time since the victim of this devil’s rage breathed her last.
“Five of Christine’s family members were among those witnessing the execution,” concluded the report.
Five relatives of the dead child show up and a dozen more have themselves died in that mountain of time that passed between the commission of the crime and the punishment. No mention of the other people who may have loved the little girl and who have lost their minds from grief while waiting for justice.
Sadly, justice is something in short supply in post-civilized America.