Friday, January 13, 2006

Slow Down!

A number of years ago I started taking photos of road kill with the intention of exhibiting a show called "Slow Down". My goal was to get even just a few people to realize that we all drive too damn fast.

This morning I was reminded of this again. Now I shouldn't say that I ALWAYS drive the speed limit or below, but I'm very careful and I try to be aware of the road conditions, other drivers, visibility, etc. And I work hard to keep my car in top shape so I know I can rely on it in all conditions.

But quite often, like this morning, I'm tail gated by someone behind me wanting to go faster. And many times, there's someone in front of me so I CAN'T go any faster even if I wanted to. And another thing: I usually allow for a space between me and the car in front of me so that if they slow down or need to stop, I have time to react. Well, aparently, this some people don't like that, and they think that every square inch of road should be covered with a car at all times, regardless of speed. I guess they can't tell that I'm GOING THE SAME SPEED as the cars in front of me, but I'm just leaving a space. So they try to pass me and fill that space.

What, can I ask, is WRONG with people?

Slow the hell down, leave earlier if you have to, and get off my back.

And watch out for the animals out there. What's the hurry anyway? Gotta get to McDonalds? Or is it Starbucks? Those animals that you've run over on the way there don't get to nibble on their next french fry. By the way, if you haven't seen the movie SuperSize Me, you owe it to yourself to check it out.

Here's another thought: please friggin' SIGNAL when you are going to turn. I can't tell you how many times I'm waiting to turn left or pull onto a road and the schmuck coming the other way doesn't signal, and then turns. I of course now have to wait another 30 seconds for the next break in traffic and pray that another dolt doesn't do the same thing.

All I ask is that you are respectful, courteous and careful out there on the roads. And I promise to do the same thing. If we all did this, road rage, rear-end accidents, blood pressure, and hatred towards our fellow drivers would probably be reduced. Isn't that a worthwhile goal?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

We live about a block from a major 4-lane road out here in the sticks. Coors Blvd. runs from the north to the south and is pretty much the only route that doesn't have speed bumps. The posted speed limit is 55 and of course folks often go faster than that.

I left work a few minutes early yesterday for no particular reason. My eyes were stinging from too much reading and computer work and it was Friday. I just wanted to leave. I popped onto the freeway, on the east side of the river, traveled south and west as always to cross the river, got off, and headed for Coors. This is my standard way home every day.

Heading north on Coors, I spotted a black and white border collie in the south bound lanes limping with one front paw held up, going kinda in circles with a 'help me' look about its face. Knowing how dangerous this road is, and fearful for the dog, I pulled to the side of the road as quickly as I could, got out of the car and started back to see if I could somehow help the collie off the road. But already heading south were two cars, filling both south-bound lanes. I waved for them to slow down. I don't know if they did. I never heard brakes or saw any attempt to swerve. Instead, I saw the limping collie completely mowed over. She was run over by all four tires of one of the cars and was dead in seconds.

Angry and horrified, I screamed as loud and hard as I could as the murdering car simply drove off. Someone stopped and helped me move the body off the road, our gesture of helpless respect.

The one thing I have always hated about living in ABQ is the road kill. And until now, I always said that it must have been a sad accident. But last night I saw someone who was either too busy to stop, too distracted to stop or just saw a target that they could brag about later.

I've been crying on and off since then. I keep seeing the killing in my mind over and over and I feel so much grief and anger. And uselessness.

Everyone: Please slow dow. Please stop tailgaiting. Please treat other lives with the same kindness and respect you want for you and your loved ones.

2:11 PM  

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