So, this post is going to be a soapbox post, fair warning.
And it's not going to have any pretty pictures because there's nothing pretty about the subject.
On Saturday night, when we were leaving Eric's birthday dinner, I noticed that one of his back tires was really, really low. So we popped into a gas station, put some air in the tire, and decided to just head straight home. Because the tire had been so low, and we didn't know if there was a nail in it or something, we decided to take back roads home instead of the highway. Insert pitch black, narrow, tree-lined, 2-lane roads - in the pouring rain.
There was a small SUV right in front of us, but we noticed that the car in front of it was swerving all over the road and into oncoming traffic. After watching this happen two...three...four times, it became way too obvious that the person driving the car was completely and utterly drunk. We decided to stay a bit further back, but as we continued driving the person continued to drive into oncoming traffic in the other lane and ran car after car after car off the road and into ditches. Luckily, most of them were SUVs or trucks and were able to pull out of the ditches - if that had been me? There would have been no driving my tiny little car out of the ditch without damage. At this point, we had enough, and Eric called 911 to report the vehicle and give a location for the cops.
This was no tattle-taling; this was literally us fearing that the person in that car was going to kill someone.
While Eric was on the phone with the dispatcher, the person ran at least four or five other people off the road and mowed down both a speed limit and deer crossing sign! I was hoping that he would wreck himself and that his car would be too disabled to drive any further, but the person was driving an older car, and it just kept going. But, SERIOUSLY, people....how do you run 10 people off the road, mow down two signs, and just keep going?!?! I wish we could hear the 911 recording because by that point, I had my legs curled up under me in the seat, hands over my face, and was shreaking things like, "OMG he made that person wreck!!!," and "OMG he just took out two signs...," and "OMG Eric, tell them to hurry, that person is in the ditch!"
Seriously, one of the scariest times that I can remember.
Dispatch assured us that they already had officers on the way, and since we were following this car, they had a pretty good location match to go off of. Then...we came to a stop light. The SUV in front of us pulled around in front of the drunk person and stopped (I think to block him to make sure he didn't run the red light.) But THEN this person, a woman, proceeded to get out of her vehicle, march back to this person's car and pound on his window, yelling at him and asking if he was crazy and to get off the road.
Ma'am. While I appreciate your sentiment...are YOU crazy?
You are a 115 pound woman, alone, on a dark back road, screaming at a highly intoxicated person outside of your car. This sounds like a perfect set up for a front page news story in the a.m. in the Sunday paper to me.
I really don't have a high tolerance for situations like that, so we drove around and headed home, confident that the man wouldn't make it much further before the cops found him.
And then I cried.
And was mad.
Because those people that were run off the road are someone's family members.
They are loved by someone.
They have children and parents and grandparents and spouses that would be devastated by their loss.
Whose lives would be forever changed.
Because of someone's irresponsible, selfish, drunken decision.
People who were driving home just like us at 9:30 pm.
(it wasn't even that late!!!)
Who probably couldn't see as well as they normally could because of the darkness and rain.
Who were not expecting some nut job to run them off the road.
I am not exaggerating folks.
And sorry I'm not sorry for the public service announcement.
This is serious stuff.
Please think twice (or three, or four, or five times) before you make the decision to drive after you've been drinking.
I would hate for you to kill or hurt yourself, but what's way worse is that your actions affect other people.
Stupid, drunken decisions ruin lives.
If you call me drunk, and I physically can, I will come pick you up. If you drink at my house, you will always have a place to sleep.
And if you manage to get past me and leave my house drunk,
I will call the cops on you.
I will ruin a friendship to keep you from ruining your own life or taking someone else's.
And while I'm on a roll here.
For the love of God.
If you are that person who sees something like this happening,
do not try to save the world single-handedly.
You are asking for trouble.
Call it in.
And then write a blog post and rant about it.
In all seriousness folks, watch out for the crazies on the road even if you're sober.
Do not drink and drive.
Do not let your friends drink and drive.
It's just really not worth it.