Rumor has it…

Published 11:06 am Thursday, April 28, 2022

We recently had an ‘incident’ in our little town which, to the best of my knowledge, no one was seriously injured.

 

From published news reports, it appeared that a driver, with three other passengers in their SUV, suffered a ‘medical issue,’ resulting in veering into the wrong lane, then overcorrected, obliging the vehicle to mow down a light pole, trash cans, bouncing off other cars and, horrifyingly, running into a parked VW with three people inside before it rolled over in the middle of the street. 

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That’s one long sentence to describe an incident which must have felt like it lasted forever for all passengers concerned. 

 

For most of us, before we learned the facts, what seemed incredulous was to see a flipped vehicle in the middle of our main drag where it’s pretty much impossible to go over 20mph because of a couple of traffic lights and a steady stream of traffic. Not to mention the row of parallel parked cars flanking each side of the street. How could that possibly happen?

 

And so the rumors and speculation flew faster than the beleaguered Kia SUV ever did. From social media, to local chit chat, to texting back and forth with friends. It’s the most entertaining—as well as the most frustrating—part of small town life. While I did hear and read, ‘Cops think it was a medical issue,’ I was also told with conviction that it was a mom, sober, with two kids in the backseat who fell asleep in her car. Right away that didn’t sit right with me because what mother has ever enjoyed the luxury of two toddlers being quiet enough during a car ride to even have a chance to nap at a red light?  

 

Then there were two other people who insisted it had been someone texting, probably a teen driver, who hadn’t noticed they were running up and over the VW before flipping over. Darned irresponsible kids, they’re gonna kill us all, they muttered. 

 

Nah, as usual fact is far, far less interesting than fiction. I had a taste of this, twenty years ago, when I was grading the area where my riding arena now stands. It measures 65’ by 196.’ Big, ol’ rectangle. Which made it, to some, appear that I was creating a massive swimming pool. As if. But what was the funniest bit was the argument I had with a fellow in line at the post office who knew the person who lived there and was told that it was going to be an ‘Olympic sized swimming pool!’

 

But I’m the person who lives there, I laughed. And an ‘Olympic sized pool’ isn’t nearly that large. Build a swimming pool in those dimensions and you’ll have an undertow as well as swimmers needing a lift back to the other side. But there was no reasoning with him and I chuckled all the way back to my truck.

 

We’ve been toying with the idea of bringing a gas line onto the farm which would include quite a bit of trenching. I’m going to have to think carefully about that. There’s only so many times I’m going to be able to set the record straight and assure folks we’re not recreating the Western Front…