Saturday, August 30, 2014

Road Rage, Stupidity and Inattention (Not necessarily in that order...)

This photo is what you might call "foreshadowing."
From Google Maps Street View
Prior to heading on up to New England for a visit with her parental units, her sister and her niece, The Nuke had called me with some ideas for activities to partake of whilst she was visiting.

Well, to be precise, one activity.

The Nuke: "Dad, we should go to Maine."

Yours' Truly: "Maine."

The Nuke: "Yes Dad. Maine."

Yours' Truly: "Why Maine?"

The Nuke: "Lord's."

WARNING: Digression Ahead!

Now Lord's used to be a mighty fine dining establishment. Note the use of the past tense there, "used to be," not that the quality has gone down mind you. It's just that Lord's has closed. Here's what I got from Trip Advisor:

Yup, they've closed.

FWIW, my Mom and Dad were in there one day when George and Barbara Bush came in for lunch. Good thing Waylon Jennings and his party were just finishing up. Heh. (No, seriously. Waylon Jennings was having lunch at Lord's that day too.)

End Digression...

Now at the time of my conversation with The Nuke, I was not privy to this information. I only became aware of this fact just now (well, as I was writing this post, when it's your "now", the "now" of my discovery of the fact of Lord's closing will be in the past).

So, The Nuke wanted to head up to Maine (all of us being oblivious to the fact that where she wanted to go no longer existed) which is a 300+ mile round trip for us here in Little Rhody.

Now I've done this before, twice as a matter of fact. Drove 300+ miles to have lunch in Maine with my parents. Who used to have a place in Maine.

While that is a long way to go for lunch, Lord's was that good.

But all of that aside, the planning (such as it was) for the trip to Maine and the circumstances surrounding same was simply the prelude to the main topic of this post, alluded to in the title. (Up there, near the top!) But we're getting there, slowly and with the odd digression or two. But (yes) I digress.

Therefore, it was decreed by Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed by The Nuke and The Missus Herself that on Friday, the 22nd of August, we would all pile into The Missus-mobile and head to Maine. Come Hell or high water.

On the Thursday eve preceding that date, The Missus Herself said that we would be arising at 0800 and proceeding upon our journey once everyone was showered, dressed and fully kitted out for a journey of such magnitude.

All the while I'm thinking, "Maine, 300+ miles, 8 o'clock in the frigging morning. Woe is me!"

I should have realized that the progeny (Dad - I asked you to stop calling us that...) were even less likely to awaken at such a beastly hour than was I. So there was no gnashing of teeth, wailing nor rending of garments by me (though I was sorely tempted) upon retiring for the evening.

And 'lo, it came to pass that no one got up before 10:00 AM. Not even Little Bit, who is normally an early riser. Upon my arising from my slumbers I discovered that a decision had been reached vis à vis the trek to Maine.

The WSO: "No Dad, we're not going to Maine. It's too far. We're going over to Mystic to see the aquarium."

Yours' Truly: "Mystic."

The WSO: "Yes Dad. Mystic."

So into The Missus-mobile we piled (after showering, dressing and fully kitting ourselves out for a journey of lesser magnitude) and headed to Mystic.

Now shortly after getting onto one of the two main roads through our rustic and lovely seacoast town, I noted a driver in a white van whose skill at driving seemed to be less than desirable. His control of his commercial vehicle seemed tenuous at best. Don't ask me how I know these things. It's a talent which has helped me avoid many an accident.

I pointed out this driver to The WSO who was our pilot on this mission (I like to style myself as "Mission Commander" but The Nuke said, "Yeah, right Dad. Even the cats outrank you." I swear their promotions did not go through proper channels and...

Oops, digressing, aren't I?)

So the suspect van operator was pointed out to 
The WSO and she backed off accordingly, giving this fellow a wide berth. So to speak as we were following in his wake.

It was on this stretch of road that things got interesting...

The Scene of the Crime
From Google Maps Street View
I watched (with some detachment and some horror) as a few cars to our front, there was a vehicle stopped in the street. No doubt stopped for someone ahead who no doubt wished to make a left turn near that sign in the photo. A common occurrence on this stretch of pavement. Note that I said "stopped," said state of relative motion being critical to our story.

Just behind that car was a white BMW, late model, also stopped. Just behind that car and immediately to our front was that white commercial van being operated by that fellow I suspected of being less than a great driver. And that fellow was completely oblivious to the traffic stopped ahead of him.

Van meet BMW. BMW meet van. Oh, sorry! Was that your rear bumper that just came off? Is that the tinkling of tail light parts I hear gently floating onto the pavement?

Yup, Mr. Van smacked right into Ms. BMW. Then proceeded to "go around" to the Beemer's right (which as you'll note, there is no place to "go around" without climbing the curb and going off-roading).

The WSO stopped a good eight feet short of the van and we all sat there having a "WTF" moment.

The Situation
From Google Maps Street View
(a) is the position of the vehicle to the front of the Beemer,

(b) is the position of the Beemer,

(c) is the position of the white van after impacting the Beemer and

(d) is the path the white van took after the collision.

Now The Missus Herself wanted to pull around this mess and continue on to Mystic. Well, with two officers in the Naval Service and a retired Master Sergeant of the Air Force on board, this was not going to happen. After all, we were witnesses, doncha know?

While awaiting the arrival of the local constabulary, The Nuke and I dismounted the vehicle, she proceeded forward to assist the young lady driving the Beemer, who had a very pronounced bloody lip and was sobbing most piteously. I held myself in reserve, in an over-watch position where I could render assistance if needed yet still maintain situational awareness of the surroundings. After all, there was rather a lot of traffic on the road. Most of which was proceeding slowly as many of the local maroons slowed down to gawk and point.


Now van guy was sort of stumbling about, mumbling imprecations against his fate, knowing that he was clearly in the wrong. Asking if the young lady was alright, The Nuke told him (in her command voice) to go over by his van and await the arrival of the Paladins of Law Enforcement. (We could hear them coming as their station is nobbut a mile or so to the south of where the accident took place.)

Now at this point, things got interesting. See that blue arrow labeled "e?" That's the path of "enraged boyfriend" (whom I shall refer to henceforth as "Asshole") coming from the vicinity of the liquor store (out of frame to the left) and screaming imprecations and such at van guy.

The Asshattery Begins...
From Google Maps Street View
Now Asshole (who later filled out the accident report for his girlfriend, while sitting IN the Beemer as if to indicate he'd been there all along) was yelling at van guy, "You were obviously going too fast and following too closely! I'm gonna get a lawyer..." And various and sundry other things that assholes do when showing off for their girlfriends. She was just upset and bleeding like a stuck pig (facial wounds do that ya know, I've had a few).

I went forward to assist The Nuke in dealing with 
Asshole and give the young lady a wad of Dunkin' Donuts napkins (clean ones mind you) so that she could apply pressure to her bleeding lip.

My arrival in close proximity to The Nuke
Asshole, the bleeding lady and van guy was just in time to hear The Nuke :
  1. tell van guy (again) to go wait by his vehicle,
  2. tell Asshole to shut up and wait for the police to arrive and "why don't you help your girlfriend?" and
  3. let the lady know that the police and medical assistance were on the way.
Now apparently Asshole's Dad was in the vicinity and Asshole was yelling at Dad to "call a lawyer, people are going to pay!" (At this point I wondered, did Asshole's entire family live in this vicinity? Was there a herd of assholes grazing nearby? Where are all these assholes coming from?)

First non-involved party on the scene was the Fire Chief, he proclaimed himself to be said lofty personage when he asked The WSO and I to go stand on the curb, rather than on the curb side of our stopped vehicle (where we were safer I might add). The WSO and I of course ignored his instructions and I suggested somewhat sardonically that perhaps he could make himself useful directing traffic until the police arrived.

"After all Chief, though I'm no expert, I see nothing on fire or otherwise requiring the intervention of the Fire Chief. But I can see that traffic is backing up and people are slowing down to gawk."

Chiefy promptly stepped into the roadway and began directing traffic. Sometimes it's good to be authoritative in one's dealings with the local minions of town government. FWIW, the Fire Chief is a nice guy. But give a guy a badge...

The constabulary arrived on scene, they were briefed by The Nuke and they had The WSO fill out a written report (in my day the cops did that, they were good at asking all the right questions and such, now-a-days, I guess not - another sign of the Apocalypse).

The police did give Asshole a rather stern warning and suggested that if he didn't calm down they would be more than willing to put him up for the night. If you catch my drift. He did manage to shut up and control himself. Van guy fessed up to his lack of paying attention, bleeding lady received proper medical attention (the damage was mostly due to the multiple piercings she had in the lip/nose region according to The Nuke. Another good reason to avoid piercings around the mouth. Though some peoples' mileage might vary.)

Excitement over, we piled back into our vehicle and departed the scene. Eventually we did get to Mystic. Where we had a great time.

The Vicinity of the Aquarium
From Google Maps
Went to the Aquarium (on the right above), ate at the restaurant labelled "Go Fish" (near the lower middle) where my meal was absolutely superb. The WSO was heard to ask:

"How do you mess up lobster ravioli?"

Someone found a way. After the weekend that was, I doubt she'll ever order lobster again!

Behind the restaurant you can see there's an area with the label "Olde Mistick Village" (quaint, neh?) Interesting shopping and things to see. Little Bit was fascinated by the duck pond. As was I.

'Twas an interesting day.

Would have been more interesting had we driven all the way to Maine only to discover that the reason for the trip was no longer in business.

But I'm betting they would not have screwed up any lobster dishes.

It being Maine and all.

Ya never know.


  1. Now I have a hankering for lobster.

    I knew if a BMW was involved there would be an asshole close by.
    A very eventful day which would have been more eventful if you were not cautious of the van!

    1. That's it, the BMW must attract them!

      I felt proud of myself having spotted the van's sloppy driving earlier. But The WSO drives pretty well without me nagging her.

    2. No, assholishness is a requirement to be allowed to lease a BMW. It also determines which model BMW you are allowed to lease. Model number reflects the parts per thousand asshole to regular person.
      Did you know that part of the lease contract for a BMW is to NEVER, ever,never use the turn indicators? Should you be caught using one, your lease is immediately terminated, vehicle impounded and your name blacklisted from ever leasing one again.
      All true, I read it on the internet.

    3. Furthermore, I do believe that in Little Rhody, the use of turn signals is not only optional but frowned upon!

      It is known...

    4. Ahem. I once owned a Beemer, a lil 320i I picked up in Munich while I was stationed in Ol' Blighty. It was a fine car and I had the thing for well over a decade; it was one of the best cars I ever owned. One problem, though... The guys at the Bayerische Motoren Werke delivery center must have forgotten to give me my official Certificate of Membership in the Asshole Fraternity. How COULD they forget that, I wonder?

    5. Not all Beemer drivers are assholes (my son has a Beemer and a Mercedes, because he can) and certainly not all assholes drive Beemers (in this neck of the woods many of them like pickup trucks).

      One thing I should note, the asshole of the story in question was NOT the owner of the Beemer. He was the boyfriend.

      Hhmm, I might be on to something here...

      No certificate? Odd that. But remember, the Bavarians are a breed apart. Perhaps you didn't meet their standards of assholishness.

  2. With such a famous restaurant, I wonder why they closed? In Bezerkely, there is a venerable restaurant called Spenglers. Known far and wide, they closed for about a year/2 - then reopened, under now management I think.

    Almost had an episode like the van yesterday. A pickup towing a boat decided in the left lane that he had to turn into a strip mall just off to my right.

    With me on his right.

    Glad the ABS on my old Mercedes still worked.

    The funny thing is a moment later, he decided to signal letting me know he wanted to turn right.

    No $%^&.

    I think with the BMW assholes know no brand loyalty.

    They drive all kinds of marques.

    1. I read an article where the guy who owned the restaurant had opened a clam shack further up the road. The town of Wells is trying to get another restaurant to take over the old location (which was right on Wells Harbor).

      Assholes like pickup trucks too. But like you said, they'll drive anything.

    2. Assholism knows no bounds.
      Assholes are as ubiquitous as ABC Stores in Hawaii.

      The only thing I disliked about Spenger's in Berzerkely was the wait for a table and that it wasn't real easy to get to from the freeway.
      The fact that it wasn't on the water did not one bit affect the ambiance.

    3. Berzerkely?

      I like it, never heard that before. But I like it!

  3. Well, that trip was certainly an adventure. That said, there are some adventures we can definitely do without.

  4. Thanks for the laughs! I'm sorry that a car wreck caused me to chuckle, but once again the asshole factor took an unfortunate situation all the way to ridiculous. By the way, they are everywhere and the asshole herds are growing rapidly (as a wiseman once said, even the dumbest human being knows how to reproduce).I wasn't aware of the lease requirements on BMW's, but it sure makes sense now!

    1. Yes, they are breeding like, like, well, like assholes!

  5. Sounds like an 'exciting' day... :-)

    1. Wasn't the best start to the day.

      Things did get better!

  6. I've been away too long and missed some adventures.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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