Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Wave

Ah, the wave. Not your garden-variety-crowd undulation that happens at sporting events. I'm talking about the conciliatory wave that driver's give one another when one has yielded to the other. I love that wave. I consider it one of the final vestiges of humanity. I depend on it. When I get it, my faith in mankind is refreshed. When I don't get it, I am offended.

The least a person could do after you have made their day a little easier in traffic is throw up their hand and acknowledge the kind gesture. Do the people who don't wave feel entitled? Are they some kind of royalty who assume that people should defer to their presence? Just who is it that they think they are?

Recently, a guy on Facebook took the time to post the law in Illinois that states a driver doesn't have to stop when an ambulance passes with sirens blazing they only need to slow down. How stupid people are for stopping instead of slowing down, he argued. If only these simpletons knew the letter of the law these idiots would not get in his way when he: Mr. Smarty Pants, simply slowed his roll in deference to peril. Clearly, wherever he needs to be in these moments is far more important than where any ambulance might need to be. Really, buddy?

Despite my new knowledge of this factoid I will always come to a full stop when an ambulance needs to get through. If there is an ambulance there is an emergency. Something bigger than myself. I can stop. Just because we don't have to doesn't mean we shouldn't.

If it's a firetruck rushing to get a cat out of a tree or a policeman turning on his lights just to get through, I'm going to stop. I'm going to wave when people are kind enough to let me go and I'm going to continue to let people go ahead of me. Cause that's how I roll, T-style.

To quote Jon Stewart in his final speech at The Rally to Restore Sanity in Washington, D.C. "And yet these millions of cars must somehow find a way to squeeze one by one into a mile long 30 foot wide tunnel carved underneath a mighty river... You go. Then I’ll go. You go. Then I’ll go. You go then I’ll go... Well, that’s okay—you go and then I’ll go."

Err on the side of decency and kindness. "You go then I'll go." There's a mantra I'd like to have sweep the nation.

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