Thursday, December 04, 2003

I'm worried about BBY KAT, the light brown Honda.

She's one of the cars that I frequently see during my drive to work. I'm usually on the road at about the same time, traveling the same route, and I find myself riding along beside many of the same cars each morning. It's like a playgroup for my Ion. He perks up when he sees cars he recognizes.

There's BBY KAT of course. And the white truck with the Attend the Church of Your Choice sticker. And the silver Ion whom my green Ion thinks of as a sort of cousin. (We let each other over in the sticky construction spots).

There's the orange Cougar. And the bright yellow Beetle. And the car that I only saw once but can't seem to forget because of its sticker.

But I'm just hoping BBY KAT is all right. I caught up with her on an entrance ramp to the highway. The streets were rainy, cold, and slick, and I was just trying to get to work without random cars losing control and sliding into me. As I pulled up behind BBY KAT, one of her rear wheels began wobbling alarmingly as if it were about to fall off.

"What do I do?" I wondered. "Do I honk, flash my lights, roll down my window and shout?" I felt terrible, but I did nothing. I watched her turn onto the highway and speed up to match the traffic, unaware that anything was wrong.

A police car passed me. "Catch her!" I silently prodded him. "Pull her over and warn her about the wheel!" But he didn't. The wheel continued to wobble, and the officer passed her without a glance.

My exit came up, and I took it, spending the entire remainder of my drive with my knuckles clenched on the steering wheel. I imaginined BBY KAT's wheel coming loose, her car careening out of control, flipping several times into oncoming traffic, and ending in a twisted wreck with many innocent people dead. All because I couldn't bring myself to flash my lights at the woman.

I know it sounds silly, but I'm going to be checking the paper for traffic fatalities. The world is just too darn dangerous.

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