It’s Murder Out There

Earlier this year I had a vehicle issue and decided to walk home with my disabled son, starting out toward Crow from Veneta.

It was dark and drizzling. I was amazed at the aggressiveness of vehicles as they flew by us on Territorial Highway, many showing no courtesy whatsoever. At first I attributed this to post-happy-hour behavior, but then it made no sense.

I ended up facing the traffic with my son behind me, literally angling into the road facing the headlights coming at me at 55 mph. This unequal game of chicken seemed to work; the drivers would move over to the opposite lane. Clearly the driver did not want an insurance incident on his record.

It seems to me things have gotten way too tribal now. Perhaps my son and I were perceived as homeless or [gasp] undocumented immigrants not worthy of consideration walking down the highway? We had no curbs to work with. Whenever I drive the back roads of Lane County and I encounter creatures in sight (human or otherwise), I back off the accelerator and move to the opposite lane as soon as safe.

During these aggressive driving incidents, there was no oncoming traffic. Maybe we need to recalibrate and remember the “old days” when the first tribal thought was perhaps these people need help (which I was not asking for), or at a minimum they are deserving of being treated with dignity out there walking along the road.

Mark Story


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