DIstracted Driving 40 years ago

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Distracted Driving- 40 years ago

Accidents will Happen – Elvis Costello

I was reminded of this just the other day.

In 1978 I was taking an ornithology class at ASU (I really wanted to be a wildlife biologist then). A large portion of the lab for the class consisted of bird identification at the Phoenix Zoo. Each Thursday, our class was loaded into institutional vans promptly at 6 am, so you can imagine many undergraduates were left at the curb each week.

My primary mode of transportation at that time was a lemon yellow 10 speed Schwinn. Living about four miles from the takeoff point, making the race to the van, it was often like the last leg of the Tour de France. On this particular morning, I was of course, racing the clock, and was wearing my favorite 10 inch bell bottom jeans. I can still remember to this day, the tugging feeling of the pants as they became entangled in the derailleur, looking down, and then blackness. Talk about distractions!

When I came to, my first memory was of the parked 59 Ford Galaxy (the last year with the big fins), that I had hit, my totaled 10 speed, my chin cut to the bone and bleeding like a stuck pig. Gathering my wits, I made it home, several stitches later my chin was repaired but not my ego. My story about that scar was for many years, was that I had earned it from a football game.

I often feel my chin when I see so many distracted drivers on the road. Remember a car at 40 miles per hour travels about 60 feet every second, and a parked car can be like a cement wall So please leave that cell phone alone until you are stopped, and avoid those distractions!