Tuesday, April 22, 2008

On the road

(two posts in a row? bah! no way am I making a habit out of this.)

Today I drove to work just like I do every day.

It was cool, springlike, and the traffic positively glistened in the early morning sunshine. As I neared my destination, I passed an ugly car accident. U-G-L-Y: Rollovers, blocked lanes, red and blue lights everywhere, and worst were the ambulances that didn't seem to be in much of a hurry.

It made me think, as I drove past. My own route was unobstructed as was my view of the scene. It was an awful scene, though, and I hoped and I hoped and I hoped that those ambulances weren't going to be there long and that the people for whom they were summoned would be able to get back to their lives very soon. All of them. Regardless of who caused what.

It made me think. And I have since decided to post this message publicly just to sortof make sure in a non-legally-binding kind of way that at least a few people know about this.

Please, if I die in a grizzly car accident, please don't put one of those smug little white crosses in the oily sand smack-dab on the site where I met my sticky end. Seriously. Don't do it. I don't want a self-satisfied little cross to act as my invisible shrine in the dust and salty grime of daily traffic in a numb and forgetful city. First of all, a cross? The international symbol of torture and pennance? If you MUST put something there, put an upside-down peace sign. Make sure it is upside down, I'm no a flowerchild. Put it flat on the ground. Never visit that site again. Put no name, no date, and for gods' sakes no stupid silk flowers to stain and melt and fade and become unrecycle-able garbage.

If you need a shrine or rememberance or something, fine. Do it someplace easy to get to, safe, quiet, and maybe kinda pretty. Do it for yourselves. Don't do it for me. I'll come talk to you on my own, but I won't be at any shrine. I don't want a shrine or a cross, or some news team taking soft-focus slo-mo filler of candles in cracked glasses standing infront of my highschool picture. I hate that picture. Don't do it. It serves no purpose other than to lash and re-victimize and moreover to really bother the tar out of me.

If I meet an unpleasant demise some other way, please keep this in mind. Do what you have to do and want to do in order to keep the good memories and get rid of the bad ones, but don't turn it into some kind of wedding-industry mourn-o-rama so as to demonstrate how demonstrable each level of bitter sadness can be. Geh.

Finally, if one of you, my sweet readers, meets an untimely demise... I want you to know that I will. not. visit your little wooden cross by the side of the road. I won't do it. I know you won't be there. We'll chat about whatever we need to chat about later on our own. I'm not going to go flog myself at the scene of the accident just to see how brutally unfair the whole world is. Let's face it: you and I both know already how brutally unfair the whole world is and neither of us has died messily. I'll miss you terribly, and my grief will be profound... but I will not participate in accident-site shrine-making. I won't do it. You deserve better. So do I.

The sun is still glistening off of the cars down below there on the highway. The air is still chilly and cool and filled with the promise of sprintime and summer on the way. There is a metallic scrape across one of the lanes on the highway and a crumpled chrome bumper and some black tire marks pointing to a new hole in the concrete dividers. I hope I hope I hope all parties will be okay, and if not okay then at least in a place where they can get to okay in short oder. And if not, if someone doesn't make it past today... then I hope I hope I hope the families decide to honor the passing in a way that can forego the little white cross on the side of the road.

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