This just in from the Associated Press:
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Film director Robert Clark, best known for the beloved holiday classic "A Christmas Story," and his son were killed Wednesday in a car wreck, the filmmaker's assistant and police said... The driver of the other car was under the influence of alcohol and was driving without a license.
I am a good driver. I have good reflexes and pretty good instincts, and have been able to avoid disaster a couple of times. But as the above story shows, there are times when the best drivers in the world are flat out screwed by people who are assholes and don't give a fuck about anyone else on the road.
Last week, my friend Mike, whom you may remember from the near-bar-fight story, was sitting at a red light. He had come to a full stop, and was just waiting for the light to change.
That's when he heard the squealing brakes behind him.
The impact sent his car flying into the intersection, only luck kept him from getting hit by any oncoming cars. It took a moment for him to gather his wits, but when all was said and done, he was ok, sore, but not seriously injured.
I turns out a cop witnessed the whole thing, and upon questioning, figured out the other driver was hammered. But he was also fine. The drunk drivers always are.
It's the people they crash into who are fucked.
Mike's car, a paid off, but fairly old Audi, is a total loss as far as the insurance company is concerned. To him, it was as good as new. Now he has to buy a new one, with about $10,000 in insurance money. Sure, he could sue the guy who hit him, but there's no point. The other guy did have insurance, but the bare bones kind for people who only want the least amount of legal coverage. Her won't have any money of his own.
So Mike is screwed. Alive, and aware of how much worse it could have been, but screwed nonetheless.
Robert Clark and his son Ariel aren't so lucky. 24-year-old Hector Velazquez-Nava, the driver of the other car, is alive.
Like I said, it's the people they crash into who are fucked.