I can beat this drum all day. Not because it’s fun – although, often it can be funny to
witless witness – rather, because it’s quasi therapeutic to not let these moments pass unrecognized.
Also, I like that people are coming around to my way of thinking. It’s about damn time. One is, after all, either a part of the solution or else part of the problem.
I’ve been kvetching about how cities protect themselves from skateboarder liability suits for over a decade. You know those little metal pucks that cities put on the corners of railing/benches/dividers to keep sk8ers from doing tricks on them?
Yeah, those gotta go.
If for no other reason than cities haven’t managed police reform to protect their BIPOC citizenry from police brutality – and they are willing to suffer those wrongful death or excessive force suits without taking action to correct the problem. I say “Why? Why, then shall we protect the city from lawsuits from injured skateboarders?”
Let’s face it, skate culture is – in my observation – largely a white guy thing. And they choose – free will and all that crap – to perform tricks on these public constructs, using them in a manner that is not intended. Without helmets, I might add.
But, no…these little metal pucks are somewhere on virtually every block downtown. Not in neighborhoods, mind you. Liability there rests with homeowners. On public property, though, the City is potentially liable for injuries on its property, so it protects itself from frivolous lawsuits from parents of brain damaged teens or spouses of the paralyzed father of their children (proving that we really need qualifiers for parenthood beyond the almost involuntary ability to attain an erection) by installing these pucks to help prevent injury.
No, what we need here is a justice system that is a little more bitchy.
Hold on a second…you raised a child without enough common sense to wear the recommended safety equipment and bought them the skateboard and let them out of the yard unsupervised and they hurt themselves on City property. Now they are a vegetable and We The People are expected to shoulder the blame?
Ok, bitch. First of all, the correct answer is “No”. “Hell no, even”. Secondly, the key phrase there is “they hurt themselves. Periodt. We The People had nothing to do with it, this is totally a “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction” moment.
And, lastly, We The People think that we owe it to ourselves to ask if you need a date to the Darwin Awards, because we have a feeling you’ll be invited…and we’d really like to go!
Seriously, there really should be a public ceremony – if those are ever allowed again – actually awarding the families of people who improved humanity by removing themselves from the gene pool.
Maybe then we’d stop seeing unqualified humans released into the world unsupervised. Just a couple generations ago, we’d lock our less fortunate family members away in an attic to protect them from themselves and the family from the fallout of any potentially untoward behaviors.
Now, we lack the commitment to our families and our neighbors and buy them skateboards or smartphones, which allow them no end of potential trouble. And then we sue a third party
if when shit goes sideways.
Also, now…we have these skateboarder-type people who cheated death and survived what likely should have been last words – think “Hey, watch this!” – and grown up.
And <shudder> procreated. Because wearing condoms was as much a violation of their rights as wearing masks during a pandemic is.
And, worst of all, 70 million of them have now been duped into thinking they were qualified to make an informed opinion about who should lead our country.
Why am I surprised? How long have we been putting the Surgeon General warning on cigarettes…40…50 years? Yet I still see people in their 30s and 20s smoking.
Like I said, I’ve been a proponent of letting Darwin sort it out for quite sometime. Alas…
But that affords me the opportunity to observe and report on the stupid things we do as a culture to help – or exploit – those poor, stupid, Stupid Americans.
Luckily, what I see is usually more entertaining than watching anti-maskers during a global pandemic or white supremacists vote.
Don’t believe me?
Maybe that’s for the best, since now that I’ve made the sad supporting case, the things I’ve ruefully chuckled about when I’ve witnessed them over the past weeks are <poof> gone. I knew I should have taken pictures.
The vagaries of aging…
Things like the sign I saw on the side of a cart in the local Kroger outlet, Fred Meyer. It was on a piece of merchandise handling equipment for an employee gathering online orders:
Free In-Store Pickup!
Um, isn’t that always the free option?
Mentally bending over backward, I know what they were attempting to say. F for execution, though. I get it, you’re trying to differentiate your online shopping/in-store pickup service from say…restaurants, right? When you’re too lazy to cook and order takeout or – for those of you old enough to remember – go to a restaurant to eat, you pay a premium to have the work done for you.
An example of this from my personal history:
I love pasta. It’s a genetic trait passed from mother to child, as far as I can see. Hehe.
But sometimes I just don’t want to expose myself to my own lack of discipline by preparing a full batch of pasta – which I always do, because who wants half a package of pasta in their cabinet and a half jar of sauce in their fridge? And what if you improperly dose out the sauce and don’t have enough left for the second batch?
Ergo, I cook it all up. Because pasta is one of those few foods that I will eat as leftovers. But then…I eat the whole pound of pasta in one sitting.
So to me, it’s sometimes worth paying the markup for a single serving.
To my ex (Rib), though – a chef – it was a non-starter.
I’m not paying $15 for something I could make at home for $.25!
I feel the same about eggs, so I get it. Although, when someone else is buying, I shut up and eat eggs! He stuck to his guns, though. I think I successfully ate pasta in a restaurant once while we were together. Hehe.
So what Freddy’s is saying is that they will shop for your groceries for you and not charge you extra like that chef that boils water for you does. But as far as marketing goes, I wanted to stop and argue with the cashier that made me pay for my groceries.
But, but…it says “free in-store pickup and here I am! Why are you making me pay?!?
Although, since I was picking up cat food and a plant, arguing that I had “groceries” might have been tough.
The plant was “free”, because I’ve long wanted a fig but didn’t want to spend money on one, thinking Myrtle would just
eat ruin it anyway. This fig – working name Figly – represents 300 recycled cans and bottles, of the Coke Zero (take that, V!) and craft beer variety, save the occasional fizzy water bottle. Thus, it was “free”. Since all of my Myrtle-free Zones are either too small, too dark for plants or already occupied by other plants like Cornelius, my corn plant, I had to improvise to protect Figly.
I’ll figure out something better. First, I need to get dear Figly a permanent pot, then I’ll rearrange furniture to create a better Myrtle-free Zone. Right now, I’m busy not spending money on a pot for my new plant that I “picked up in-store for free”.
In other stupid news, there have been a few public works projects around my home specifically tailored toward protecting our dummies.
First, with our new trend toward outside dining to protect against COVID spread while also supporting the restaurant industry and also definitely not curbing our right to not prepare our own food…I’ve noticed some issues.
Mostly, I love the City responding to the public need by allowing restaurants to use two to three parking spaces adjacent to their doors as outdoor dining areas. A few non-essential side streets have been turned into on street dining plazas and beer gardens. This has allowed restaurants and bars to add not just seating, but in order to create a dining “experience”, some restaurants have added foliage to their street dining rooms. Now that the weather has turned from False Fall to Actual Fall, sided tents and heaters are being added to the mix – just in time for Lockdown 2.0!
Hey, it even helps the air…plants take CO2 out of the air and release oxygen. That’s a bonus, even though I couldn’t say with any scientific certainty that COVID particles ever get absorbed into the plantings with the CO2. It’s pretty, and that’s enough for me.
But then I see this bar next to my house setting up their outdoor area. They’ve built picnic tables and benches, built planters and then stained them so patrons have a nice area to enjoy their fare.
Then they posted this sign to help people not get stains on their clothing.
On a GD tree. Gourd help us all. I doubt Bob Ross was actually responsible for this apparently recently-painted tree.
Mind you, they built all this on a day they were closed, so they wouldn’t have been ruining customers’ clothes. Just lazy bastard passers’ by clothes who copped an entitled squat on the bar’s work in progress arts and craft project.
More global city-wide cures for stupid that I’ve seen recently involve solutions for one-way streets.
Personally, I think these signs should be replaced with something like…
If you haven’t seen the original Total Recall, the head explodes right after this warning. I think drivers going the wrong way down a one-way street should be prepared for something equally damaging.
But, not Portland. No…
In our bicycle-friendly little burg, where cyclists are expected to follow the rules of the road, we’re creating bike lanes on both sides of one-way streets.
Well, so we have a bike lane for travel in each direction…on a one-way street.
For the cyclists that are supposed to follow the rules of the road.
Sidenote: the song Warning Signs just came on my Of Monsters and Men Pandora station. My Pandora app isn’t even open while I’m working on this?!?
I’m not sure it’s perfectly clear here in the 4:30 PM darkness, but this is a two lane one-way street. See? No yellow line down the center. It used to be a three lane, but in order to protect
retired skateboarders cyclists from their own inability to follow rules, the City removed a lane and added a second bike lane for against flow riding. The left-hand bike lane is inexplicably bordered by yellow stanchions instead of white, as on the right-hand with traffic flow bike lane.
Please. How is this possibly expected to work? We’re trying to protect a public who refuses to put forward an accountability for their own well-being.
Note of interest: yes, I was standing in the door of Portland’s oldest strip club – Mary’s Spot – as I took this pic.
Not to be outdone by cyclists, I saw a traffic accident the other day. I was getting on the freeway and a
Trump Truck pick up truck exited the freeway on the on ramp I was attempting to use, experiencing a solo spin out and coming to rest pointed the wrong way against an overpass pillar and canted out into traffic so it blocked one lane and almost all of the second lane.
Good citizen that I am, I squeezed by and continued on my way, leaving the situation in Darwin’s capable hands. I also wanted to confirm my recollection that the next ramp on this freeway was actually to – or from in the case of this particular idiot – another freeway. Either this joker successfully drove the wrong way on not one, but two freeways before unsuccessfully exiting on the on ramp I was trying to use or he (I just chose the dumbest gender, I didn’t see that the driver was actually male) drove for multiple exits on the one freeway going the wrong direction.
These are our people…
I do not like them.
Not one bit.
But I like even less waiting for them to show me that their heads are full of shit.
What do you think, do I have a future as a Dr Seuss For Dummies author?
Why can’t families go back to locking away their embarrassing shortcomings, both genetic and/or rearing failures? I figure it’s a toss up, should what I ask for come to pass. With 70 million voting age Americans voting against rationale, science, basic rights and common sense, I know it’s almost as likely that I’d be the one living in my family attic.
At least there’s more than just books to keep me company. I would have the interwebs and social <shudder> media. Words With Friends and I could even take up video gaming!
Hell, maybe that should be what my long game is. My sister has a much nicer home than mine…maybe I should give into it!