Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Another Personal Freedom Falls

Another Personal Freedom Falls:

Starting today, January 2, 2008, we won’t be allowed to “text” whilst driving. That means sending a text message via cell phone behind the wheel. What better reason could we have for taking the bus or train? Personally I don’t think I can spend more than ten minutes behind the wheel without the overwhelming urge to text. It’s an obsession. Wait, is that “obcession?” No, I guess not.

So here’s my plan: first learn new lingo for texting. They shorten phrases that get used often to a few letters. For example “bite me” would just be BM. That could mean a couple of other things just as appropriate. It’s all in how you read it. And I need to subscribe to some of those internet happy face symbols that depict emotions. The goal is to reduce my text messages to a series of letters and symbols so that I can send an entire note in mere seconds. Because, if there’s one goal in this life it’s to do something illegal without getting caught. Certainly not actual communication. Right?

To help catch naughty drivers Seattle is installing red light photo boxes at 24 “more” intersections. If you’re texting and don’t notice the light is red you may scoot through the intersection. Click! You get a ticket in the mail for $101. It’s going to cost a million bucks to do all 24 intersections but the city says the ones already installed have paid for themselves two and a half times. For those of you who haven’t passed the WASL it means a good deal. We don’t know if they’ll actually analyze the photos to see if the driver was doing something other than driving but they could.

That sets up a challenge sport. Here’s how it would work. You get a witness or two in the car and they make a list of all the stupid stuff you do that you shouldn’t. Like eating a taco, applying makeup, phoning ET, brushing your cat, and texting… The one who wins is the one that does the most stupid stuff while running the red light and does NOT get a ticket in the mail. Losers have to pay the $101 and take the WASL again. Oh, and if you have a wreck, you lose by default.

This is yet another good reason to take the bus. One possible outcome is that you lose your license which means you have to ride the bus anyway, so you might as well get used to it. I’ll see you at the Lake Boren Transit Center where I’ll wave as I drive on the newly opened Coal Creek Parkway. Wait, is waving still legal?


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