Monday, October 15, 2007

Leading the blind

Sometimes I act without thinking. It is as if I know the right thing to do without thinking about it. This innate ability rests within me for some reason,. I do the right thing despite the consequences. I can firmly say it is not because I learned it from the bible.

Last Saturday I risked my life to save a man from being hit by a car. The story is a little convoluted so bear with me.

I met a blind man at a service station in Carson near where I work. He was trying to use the bathroom, but was told it was unavailable.  I knew the real story. I few months earlier,  two employees were executed by high school aged gang members during a robber. The new employees have little trust. I remember thinking how sad it was that ramifications from two murders were still felt in the community and even extended to affect innocent blind pedestrians who just needed a place to pee. I resolved to help the man find a toilette. However, when I finished my transaction, he was gone.

It took a few minutes and a painful $65 dollars to fill my tank. As I finished, I caught sight of the blind man standing at the curb, white cane in hand, 100 feet from the corner crosswalk. I jumped in my truck to pull around the pumps toward where he was standing only to find that he was gone. I spotted him up the street another 50 feet flailing away at the center divider while standing in the north bound lanes of Avalon blvd. I saw him trip on the curb and fall toward the grass in the divider, as he tried to stand, he stumbled and fall toward oncoming traffic. I jumped from my truck and ran in front of the oncoming cars with my arms waving; breaks squealed, I nearly peed my pants, nobody hit me or the blind man.  I walked over to him and offered assistance, he asked to be taken to the 7/11 across the street. An awkward moment passed between us as he reached for my arm and we ended up holding hands. A few minutes later I was back in my truck. I knew I had done the right thing, I did not know why.

As I sit writing this post the thing that bothers me is the inaction of the drivers from the 20 other cars stopped in the south bound lanes.  As I walked the across the street with my new friend, one of the drivers even honked when he accidentally bumped into his car. I mean, what the hell?

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Carolyn Ann said...

People, as a rule, don't stop to help. I don't know why.

You did the right thing.

Carolyn Ann

Dreyksune said...

Just about every morning, I walk my son to his school. It's about a fifteen minute walk, but we have to cross two fairly busy streets. Even though our state law says you're supposed to yield the right of way to people in intersections, maybe one in one hundred actually does. I would assume that it's focus more than anything; you want to get from point A to point B, and anything which would slow you down should be ignored.

My only complaint about your post was the fact that you say you don't know why you stopped to help. Of course you know why; because you're a decent human being who doesn't believe that someone else should be put at risk because of something they have no control over.

Congratulations on being the 1 in 20 worth the oxygen.

jamon said...

Good for you. You're one of the 'other people' that will help someone as the rest drive on.

I guess this is a symptom of urban living - we're somehow divorced from the plight of others...

tina said...

My ex-boyfriend and I were driving in our car and seen a guy just getting the crap beat out of him. Five big guys were taking turns hitting him, he was all bloody and trying to get up off the ground, on his knees, one guy just drop kicks the guy in the face! Scary to watch. My boyfriend decides he's got to help this guy. So we get out and he says, hey you guys, don't you think this guys had enough? He said it a couple of times and they kept knocking the guy around. My boyfriend decides someones got to stick up for this guy. He hands me his cigarettes and lighter and says, ok, you guys have to fight me too. My boyfriend was not that big or strong, just very brave, or should I say stupid? :) Well, I guess I was going to get my ass whipped too, so we stood our ground and they said to the guy that was hurt, you're lucky to have someone here to help you and just kind of brushed us off as to if to say, meh, whatever, and they left. Crazy world.

tina said...

Oh and thanks for stopping to help someone that is handicapped, (do they still use that word?) you would be one of the few that would help my deaf son to communicate with the station worker.

Johnny Crow said...

as a general rule, those who are a waste of oxygen don't help others. So people like you me and those who would stop and help are those who actually have a brain and a heart and care more about the world than the crap people care about nowadays.

Mojoey said...

I think this issue is one of my biggest problems with religion. No matter what they say, their filter does not let them help if the situation is incidental. I eat lunch several days a week with a pastor. On at least four different occasions I have seen him walk by a hungry homeless man without a second look. Each time I’ve bought lunch or if pressed for cash, split my meal. It mystifies me.