The Dude on the Right
First off you might have noticed some changes with this page and the updates you
receive. Simply put, I’ve decided to combine our "What’s New?" listing
with our blog posting since, many times, they meld together. Let me know
if you "like it," "hate it," or really don’t care. I always like feedback.
That aside, this blog isn’t about changes on the website, this is about
something that is still kind of bothering me, knowing I should have probably
called 911, or is it 999, or is it *999, or is it *911. Let’s start with
the initial incident.
I was driving back to the dude-pad from a company where I do
some consulting. All of the traffic is cruising along the highway and I
couldn’t help but notice, up in the short distance, a dude walking along the
highway. First thought, a hitchhiker, although you don’t see many of them
these days anymore. At quicker glance the dude didn’t seem to be
hitchhiking because there wasn’t a thumb in site, and he was facing the
direction of the traffic, but as my dude-mobile came nearer to him, he didn’t
look like others I have seen walking the side of a highway. As I traveled
past the dude I tried to take a look, and it looked like a younger dude, maybe
even high school age, with a backpack, and I wondered if I should do something.
But what is that something I should do? I could try and pull over and see
if he was okay, I could try to call the police, and here is where, sadly, I
ended up. I decided to do nothing.
Lots of wrong thoughts have come into
my head since I got home, had dinner, and have been doing this, that, and the
other thing before writing this blog, and most of them have been bad,
disappointed in myself, and hoping the dude is okay. There is the simple
thought that A) The dude was a psychopath, and if I had pulled over I might be
on the evening news in a way I wouldn’t ever see. B) The dude gets
picked up by a psychopath, and if I had pulled over and tried to help, he
wouldn’t be on the evening news in a way I would be sad to see. C)
Why didn’t anyone else pull over?
Then I wondered other things like, in a
fucked up kind of way, maybe life as a drifter is actually better than his life
at home, and stopping him would have sent him back to the hell that had been his
life, maybe I missed his broken down car and he was just on the way to the exit
to get to a phone, or maybe he was just a kid looking to walk along the highway
(and that could be a song lyric, but I digress).
But here is the weird thing,
and since I’m a nut-job, for me it’s crazy. In the end, in the grand
scheme of things, I wasn’t sure of what number to call to report the dude
walking along the highway in the first place. At home, or even at work,
the choice for an emergency is easy, it’s simply 911. But ever since I’ve
sold cell phones, and have driven highways, the emergency number seems to be
different. I know, the easy answer is that I should have just pried my
cell phone out of my pocket and at least tried to dial 911, but I became
conflicted. Is the best route "911." Should I go for "*999," or is
it "*998?" Is the "*" necessary? And "What Exit did I just pass up
if they ask?"
In the end I called no one, but still, in my head, I see this
kid/dude walking along the highway, and just hope, pray, and hope some more,
that he is okay. Why? Because I did the same as everyone else in my
front view and in my rear view mirror who drove past him – I did nothing.
I really hope I wasn’t wrong to do that.
That’s it for this one! I’m The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!