bunt sign

Wednesday, April 23, 2003

One driver pulled over and waved me past him. The other backed out of his driveway into my path so that I had to slam on the brakes. Guess which one I yelled at.


As I was leaving on my first errand run this morning, I found myself coming up fast on the rear bumper of a tan Toyota that looked a bit lost. The driver must have been paying attention to his rear view mirror, because he pulled as far over to the side as he could and waved me past.

I had to veer into the oncoming lane to get around him, which wouldn't have been a problem, except that he was waving me by on a blind curve! He must have been watching me more than he was looking where he was going. I did ease around him, and there was no one coming from the other direction, so I survived. But the Toyota driver got a few choice expletives as I questioned his eyesight, his sanity, and his moral integrity.

As I rounded the turn, I glanced back and saw him make a U-turn, on that same blind curve. Then I figured it out. He wanted me to run interference for him, so he could turn around without worrying about what was coming. If there was a pickup barreling along in the other direction, it was going to hit me, and he'd be safe to turn around in the middle of the road. Ingenious!


Top branches of the birch, blown by a stiff spring breeze.

On my way home from that same trip, I'd nearly made it back to my street when I saw a white van backing out a couple of driveways ahead. I jammed on the brakes as the guy, in no hurry whatsoever, made his way into the opposite lane. What could I do?

More importantly, what could he do? He was safe, as long as I was paying attention. The way the hedges are built up along that road, if you're driving a big hulking SUV backwards, you might not be able to see very far in either direction. You have to leave your house some time, so you take a chance and hope for the best. Maybe you close your eyes as you hit the street.

Anyway, he gave me the universal wave of thanks. I waved back, and it was over. I drove the rest of the way home pondering the irony that I'd cursed at a driver who thought he was doing the right thing (I hope that's what he thought he was doing, because the alternative is freaky) and waved at a guy who cut me off.

It just goes to show that situations make actions and reactions relative. If you don't know the context, you can't predict what you'll do. Absolutes and certainties are for preachers, pundits and politicians, mostly the last of these.

previousbunt signemailnext


The Giants were one inning away from losing their third straight game, but they tied it in the eighth and won it in the thirteenth tonight, 4-3 over the Pirates. They've been playing sluggishly all week. I blame the fact that they had a day off in Pittsburgh Monday.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Overshadowed
"I don't know who he is, but most of the time I think he's everybody who isn't me."

Subscribe to the notify list to be advised when this site is updated.

Now the things that I remember seem so distant and so small,
Though it hasn't really been that long a time.
What I was seeing wasn't what was happening at all,
Although for awhile our path did seem to climb.