(March 7, 2019)
again like surf’s edge shorebirds
school-cars* not so smart!
*(The rush to pick up privileged progeny on sidestreets flanking public – and perhaps even private – schools shove industrial-strength statistics as no longer are the schoolbusdriver scofflaws the real danger for rushing-for-placement in line ignoring sidewalks, driveways and sometimes, yes, even lackadaisical inattentive students sauntering, sprinting or sprawling en route down the street with cruel competition from sheet metal or hard plastic as emergency-room – at a hoped-for best vice the other obvious destination – fodder for an old man’s fears ratchet up as enthusiasms run amok and go agog for getting to the next stop so quickly you save, what? – a few fractional half-minutes? Pray one sixth grader unused to crossing crowded streets does not dart from behind an obscuring SUV into the pass of a gotta-get-out-now other SUV. Or, worse, a bicycle hitting a small rock and tumbling a rider before a too-soon-to-stop car or bus. And there’s often but one cop on duty, and he or she is not protecting unguarded schools from terrorists but making impossible spaghetti-getting out of designed-for-teacher-parking-spaces instead of privileged-student-exiting-spaces/ In my own area of expertise – Sanford Middle School at 18th Street and U.S. Highway 17-92 (four-laned French Avenue) in Sanford, Florida, USA, there exists a perfectly adorable multi-acre parking lot patrolled at its crosswalk to the school by whistle-toting, stop-flag-sign waving crossing guards with cops in traffic-control mode conveniently hiding behind the drive-through bank’s dark hedges to catch flashing slow-speed scofflaws…unless they, too, like the school safety officer are called out on a different and immediate mission. This is the perfect place for a multi-million dollar walk-over viaduct affair. Then those who insist on cluttering at least three adjacent streets to the school’s homeowners’ driveways, sidewalks and sundry useful impediments, such as, say, garbage twice weekly and recycle one weekly removal days not to mention mail or, pray heaven forbid, especially in my growing more ancient by-the-day all-aged-out whitehairs need for occasional fire and rescue which sometimes finds cars and trucks lodged on both sides of the street! Help!)