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A Narrow Miss

Strolling through my lazy neighborhood, I came to a corner with a clearly marked crosswalk. I stopped, checked traffic, and proceeded over the boldly painted, white stripes. There was a single sedan quickly heading toward me, but there was also several blocks between us. Partway into the street, I could tell this oncoming car and I were going to have an unfriendly meeting if we kept our current rates.

I have never been bulky enough to pose a serious threat to a mid-sized car travelling 50mph, but it has been twenty years since I might have been called 'small'. In the middle of a spring day, with a break in the clouds, it would've been hard to miss me crossing a nearly deserted street.

"Still," I thought, "maybe he hasn't noticed me."

I slowed, raised my hand, and attempted eye contact with the driver... eliciting nothing from the speeding bastard, who had certainly seen me by then. I lifted my hand further, turning it in a salute halfway between a futile plea for civility and an ironic 'thank you'. As he angrily flew past (coming within five feet, and staring right at me), he replied with an imperious three-fingered gesture I understood as, "You expected me to stop? I'm driving like a madman!"

I wished I had something to throw at him, but I am not in the practice of carrying stones or eggs. Perhaps it is for the best.


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