Two weeks ago I'm pretty sure we had snow on the ground, or at least torrential downpours. Our ability to deal with inclement and constantly changing weather is probably why Chicagoans are such hearty and resilient stock. Are you listening @amazon? There's nothing we can't accomplish in this town. Some of us even sail in all of these conditions @3rdcoastcruisin.
Because it is going to be incredibly hot and humid day, I decided to take my 2 chihuahuas out on a nice long walk early in the a.m. That way they'll veg all day as I go on about all the things I have to do. As I crossed a small almost empty street in downtown Chicago I was witness to another bicycle/black suv incident. I was crossing in accordance with the suggestion of the 'walk' street line, something that is generally optional, for commuters of any kind, in this town.
Yet again, I see a black SUV turning left. A bicyclist comes whizzing by and almost gets creamed by the SUV. The bicyclist screams at the SUV - I turn around and yell at the bicyclist 'he had the right of way!' Admittedly the signage for bicyclists, pedestrians and vehicles is not intuitive. It's getting better as people grasp concept that the street sign will not flash at the same time for bikes as the sign for vehicles. There will be a handful of casualties no doubt as it continues to get ironed out.
Two days ago I feared getting shot. Today, I could have had to live with the horror of seeing a young man hit, thrown from has bicycle and attempt to calm the hysteria of the driver who unknowingly him it. Again, I didn't bring my phone. I just need a break from my digital leash sometimes. I didn't want to hear it pinging while walking my dogs on a pleasant Sunday morning.
What's different in these two stories? The first bicyclist was riding a really old bike, he had no helmet. His total investment was probably $50 bucks. The second bicyclist was totally sculpted, he was wearing a spandex body suit with shorts that came to the knee. He had a helmet. His investment was probably $10k. They were both whizzing around with no attention to traffic or their surroundings. The first black SUV was driven by an angry man, mad at the world for some reason. The second black SUV was driven by, I think a woman, (can't verify as I was visually seeing the bicyclist thrown from his bike while I was screaming) who was totally unaware.
So how do we govern for lack of awareness, dismissal of rules, apathy, anger, manipulation? Right now, I think the answer is 'we don't'. There's no way we could create any set of stringent rules that could possibly cover every situation. We each have to do the best we can in the moment and hope for the best from there.
Alicia Dale is a strategic thinking Creative that understands the power of words to influence, change and build new infrastructures. This Blog is to capture ideas that have no where else to go at this very moment. Who knows how they will be developed? Or where they will go? For now they are sparkles of light easily stored where I can search and find them when they call my name again.