Watch for Speed Bumps

Last night I got up around 3am for the regular middle of the night stretch. I was about 3/4ths of the way back to sleep when I heard a loud engine zooming down the street. I like the windows open in the summer and the bedroom is in the front of the house. I guessed it was a speeding motorcycle and about the time I was thinking, “What a moron,” I heard: THUMP SKID CRASH.

This was way down the street and I wondered if I should do anything. About 10 minutes later I could see a reflection from flashing lights on the wall and I thought I heard voices and that deep rattle-y sound that a firetruck makes when it idles and I drifted off to sleep.

This morning when I took off for work I looked around for evidence of a crash. A number of years ago the cops were chasing a car late at night and he tried to turn onto our street and lost control and took the turn way too wide, smashed a car on the far side of the street, bounced across and hit a huge truck on the driving side of the street and then spun back across and clipped another car before crashing into a giant bush in a neighbor’s yard. It was very exciting. The police siren kept blaring and all the neighbors got up and stood out in the street in their slippers and bathrobes and watched. Our neighbor across the street, Olivia, was a senior in high school and she came and asked, “Does anyone know? Was it some kids?”

Just so you don’t get the wrong idea, we actually live in a nice neighborhood. Not nice like McMansions and fancy homes but nice like, small mostly well kept homes where lots of teachers and people with small children live. It’s not a like a suburban development. Well, maybe you could argue it is, but the 1940’s version. What do I know, I’m not an urban planning expert.

Back to last night’s crash: at first I didn’t see anything. When I got to the end of the street I saw the problem. Mr. Speedy hadn’t been able to make the turn. The street ends at a T and you have to do a slight left and then right (is that what they call a dogleg?) to follow on the other side of the cross street. Mr. Speedy went diagonally through the landscaping of the house at the end, went up and tore apart a little rock wall, through a giant shrub then in a shower of dirt apparently caught some air and landed on a compact car parked on the street before bouncing off and hitting the street. That must have hurt.

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