One of my favorite films is “Defending Your Life,” a practically perfect film about courage and personal responsibility and how it’s never too late to redeem yourself. Al Brooks’ character dies in a car crash when he reaches down to save a stack of birthday CDs from the floor of his new BMW. We are led to believe, in the film, that he only hurt himself in the crash. If only that were how the world really worked when people act like selfish what’s-it-calleds while driving.
Those who know me a little know that I get somewhat aggravated when those who choose to conduct a couple of thousand pounds of metal and rubber around various streets at speeds that could kill or maim a human being decide to rush around without common sense or feel they need NOT pay attention to anything other than a foot on the gas and who is asking “Wuzzzzup?” on the phone. (Yes, aggravated enough to write a sentence like that one.)
In most cases, thankfully, I have been lucky enough to be reacting angrily or sadly or self-righteously to situations that are further from my life than what happened on Hallowe’en. Some selfish [totally appropriate nasty word redacted] decided that he should be texting while traveling on a major highway during rush hour instead of paying attention to the stop-and-go traffic ahead of him. And this is what happens.
He ran into a stopped car – my brother-in-law’s car – which was then pushed into another car which was pushed into one more car. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries, although there is a sore-necked and backed daddy of two whose family didn’t complain at all when he got home late for trick-or-treating.
So, let’s think about what would be important enough to text instead of paying attention to traffic or *gasp* pull-over to read or type. Perhaps someone was asking him to pick up milk on the way home? Or, since it was Halloween, an extra bag of Milky Way bite-sized bars? Was that worth creating a four-car collision? Or how about answering the text:
“When will you be home, honey?” “No traffic. Be home in a few…” Yeah, so you missed Halloween, huh? That Karma is a total wench, isn’t she?
So here’s my All Saints Day message to you: STAY OFF YOUR PHONE WHILE YOU ARE DRIVING!*