Clearly, the Northern Snow Geez are back. And, of course, they be back doing what they duz worst--driving.
Today on the bike I had my share of problems with drivers. Mostly it’s those little old people that sit sunken in their seats like shrunken mummies. Most pull all the way into crosswalks forcing me to either a) stop or b) go around behind (you don’t dare pass in front of seniors under the assumption that they see you—do so and I guarantee you won’t be long for this world). Some oldsters pass perilously close to me on the beach road as if they see my wildly florescent green riding shirt and red strobe light only at the last moment. Some, it is clear, never do see me.
But today, while running around in the car, it occurred that the normally smooth moving and predictable traffic was anything but. For example: If a certain beige, gray or white four-door is first in line at a red light and you suspect it is a geezer . . . when the car sits and sits . . . and sits and sits some more after the light has turned green, all doubts are removed. In fact, the car would probably sit there and rust down to the axle from old age unless someone behind toots the horn. Invariably, that horn honk seems to startle these folks awake again and nudges them forward ever so slowly. Rather than apologetic, some of these testy old coots actually seem to get rankled at the honkers.
If another pale four-door ahead begins a right turn onto a side street or into a shopping center, know now for sure it’s a senior behind the wheel when they mostly just slow to a crawl half way into the turn, as if they either a) forget why they are turning, or b) chose that inauspicious moment to decide if this is really the right address, or c) pick this dangerous time to search out handicap parking spaces. Again, as brakes screech and ten drivers try to avoid a chain-reaction pile up, more outraged horn honks generally moves these seniors along, ever so creepingly.
Down here, if you anticipate the car ahead is going to do the normal, predictable, reasonable thing, like move forward on a green light or make a turn quickly and safely, then you might just anticipate your car right into the body shop and you also might anticipate your own body right into a hospital. It’s good these seniors are slow and cautious, I suppose, for it would be a flaming disaster if they were fast and reckless; nevertheless, this over-cautious business also gets its fair share of people killed
Thought: No wonder frustrated East Coasters use their car horns like weapons with so many geezers on the roads. I had noticed this honking phenomenon in the past up in the Northeast but just brushed it off as Mediterranean types bringing their “Me First” culture to the United States. It is indeed very frustrating to be in heavy traffic and the light ahead seems to go from green to red in five seconds or less and you’ve got some old person in front and they sit and sit there for three of those five seconds, lost in a fog. I must admit, distasteful as it is to me coming from the Midwest, I too have hit the horn a few times to move people along.
Ha. Generally, in the Midwest, one may live out their entire existence and never ever hear a horn fired in anger. Out in heartland America, if the horn toots at all it is teens saying “Yo” to a friend. No, a geezer could sit at a light in the Midwest and those behind are so polite that they will go through ten or fifteen light changes, will get hungry, will run across the street to grab a bag of something, will return to their car, will eat the stuff, will have to pee. will hold the urge for hours, indeed, the polite Midwest motorist will nearly die right there at that intersection before they would think of honking a horn to make some dolt move.
Sand Sex--As I was laying on the bench at Manasota Beach today, I looked over in the dunes and saw what I thought at first were two gopher tortoises fighting. It seemed the smaller of the two (maybe four pounds) was trying to invade the larger’s (maybe eight pounds) hole, which was a few yards from my sweat bench. The big one kept bumping the smaller, hard enough to make a noise, then he even began biting the foot of the other (all this was followed by long pauses). Well, when the larger started bobbing his head up and down and sideways in a rhythmic way, it dawned that the two were going through the ritual . . . as in THE ritual. Modest, mild-mannered Midwestern man that maybe I mostly might be, and even tho I did muse to myself how they would do it with 99% of their body covered in armor, I quit watching and lay back down.
Ten minutes later, up came three noisy women, anxious to take photos of the “gophers.” When I politely mentioned that the two were mating (“two”? whoever heard of three mating?), it did not register and the ladies crowded even closer. Of course—POOF!--there went the romance; the moment of passion had passed. Although the frenzied male seemed to have no problem and would have probably put on a real XXX porn performance for the women, the demure female tried to flee these loud giants by crawling under the wooden barrier fence. Alas, her shell got suck and the younger of the giants “helped” her.
What can one say? I considered chiding the ladies to leave the animals alone; but who made me Roger Ranger? It was one thing had the women harmed the beasts—I would not have sat for that--but they clearly were just curious. Still, the fact is that these well-meaning people interrupted an important natural process. It would be awful if this breeding female of this endangered species failed to lay eggs because of the understandable curiosity of the humans. Whether we are loving these creatures to extinction or curiosifying them to extinction the result is the same--we are bugging them to extinction.
Who has not seen the “nature” programs on TV in which some so-called scientist is running down some animal either from the air, land or sea, to dart, net, disable, clip, cut, prod, probe, and sample something? When they are finished, almost always these people “painlessly” tag the animals, then fasten on one of those obscene and god-forsaken “tracking” contraptions--or even cameras--so these gung-ho naturalists can trace the movements of some species as they avoid predators and death and try to resume normalcy. It all looks rather harmless, and we are assured that it all furthers our knowledge of the animal But really, imagine the trauma you would suffer if space aliens ran you down to utter exhaustion, sedated you, stuck all manner of things in you, cut off pieces of you, then put an ill-fitting alien collar on you to follow your movements forever? My bet is you would be just as traumatized as the animals. You might even go crazy and avoid food, sex and even the light of day or the dark of night. It’s a safe bet you will never be the same person again.
I am all for protecting wild animals, but with minimal humanal, and that goes for the Steve Irwins of the world who must fill half hour TV programs each week by capturing terrified animals, over-handling them and acting like Tarzan as they do. We certainly must start blinding or killing poachers in Africa, Asia and America, for the heartless, soulless beasts they are, but we must also stop studying these animals to death simply because some college yo-yo is curious about the sex habits of something and needs to feather his resume or because some ego-Godzilla wants to boost his ratings for his weekly TV program.
Rant Therapy #339—I read that the US is again threatening to “Bomb, Bomb, Bomb . . . Bomb, Bomb, Iran” (as that demented old loon and neocon coon, John McWar [McCain], laughed back during his ridiculous and repulsive presidential “campaign”). We haven’t even seriously sat down with the Iranians and talked peace yet and still these blood-thirsty Israel-Firsters are talking more shock & awe.
Sixteen to 200 trillion dollars in debt (depending on who’s doing the lying), 11 to 30 million illegal aliens (depending on which liar is lying the least) strolling across our non-existent border and roaming free as the wind in this Third World paradise (we went from First World to Third and never even slowed for the Second World), robbery, rape, murder, crime galore . . . screams to disarm us from the Jewish media, a Socialist government and sundry social sissies . . . unemployment at 12% . . . people living in the woods . . . drugs . . . suicides. . . . And now we have these military ghouls like John McWar threatening Iran and even sniffing up new nations to attack. This monstrous excuse for a federal government, as evil an empire as ever there was, now matter-of-factly spies on its own citizens ala George Orwell (then eagerly hands over that info to Israel), gleefully tortures people, happily murders people, and, for the last twenty years, merrily starts one war after another with as little concern or conscience as a movie-goer eats popcorn. . . .
For the record--The U.S. military, spread around the globe just to make the world safe for Israel, slaughtering those who never harmed a hair on my head--are neither my soldiers nor are they my heroes. Simply put: Anyone fighting for and propping up the evil that the U.S. government has become, IS the evil. Repeat: Anyone who fights for the evil, IS the evil, regardless of whether they happen to be young and dumb, which most clearly are. If the American military is ever brought home and does something which actually works for American interests--guarding the Southern border would be a nice start--then they will again be MY army, but not before.