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Based on a True Story

Happy Monday! Let’s get right to it.

Here’s a story that was told to me by a lady in our office. It just happened last week. I might be taking a little bit of literary license with it, because I don’t remember the exact wording. However, it’s like those magical words at the beginning of a movie that always get my attention, Based on a true story.

I decided to go for a run in my neighborhood. On one side of the road is a sidewalk. I don’t necessarily like running on the sidewalk, because it’s uneven. However, I wanted to run against the traffic, so today I decided to run there.

On the other side of the road where there is no sidewalk, I see a runner coming toward me. He is running close to the side of the road, with traffic. As he gets closer to me, I see a car turning right and toward him. He is running ahead of the car, so he doesn’t see how close the car is coming toward him.

All of a sudden, I notice that the car is traveling too close to him. I hear a loud noise and realize that the car’s side mirror has smacked into the runner and knocked him down. The driver pulls over to the side of the road, and I run over there, past the car, to check on him and see if he is hurt. He is hunched over, holding his arm.

I haven’t seen the driver of the car, as I ask the runner if he is hurt. He says, “I think I’m OK”. I ask him, “Are you sure you’re not hurt, you really got smacked?”. It’s then that I hear the driver’s voice from behind me, as she tersely says, “He said he’s OK“. Then she added, ‘I didn’t see him. I don’t know where he came from‘.”

That story irritates me on many levels. There is no “I’m sorry“. Instead, only a dismissive driver. I won’t outline all the arguments of a defense attorney that I would expect to hear about the runner, and what HE could have done differently. Sometimes I think their best defense would be to just say what they really mean, “If only he hadn’t gotten out of bed that morning” or “If only he had worn a clown suit to get more attention”.

Imagine how the world would be, if the first reaction was not to go into defense mode. Instead, “Are you hurt?” or “Is there anything I can do?”. I suppose if that happened, less people would need a lawyer. Some things just make me stop and think!


And for our pic o’ day:


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