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A very scary Halloween on two wheels


One of the perks of working at a newspaper that publishes 365 (or 366) days a year is that I get the opportunity to work when most of the rest of the world is languishing at home.I have worked on every major holiday, and most of the minor ones, too, and, thus, have ridden my bike to work on most holidays.Each holiday ride seems to have its own character and obstacles; I've had fireworks thrown at me on Independence Day, for instance, and had folks offer me rides on Christmas.The holiday on which I least like to ride just passed: Halloween. I like to ride on All Hallows Eve about as much as I like to lash on antlers and prance about in the woods during deer season.For kids, Halloween is about costumes and candy.For adults and near-adults, it's about costumes and adult beverages, and the costumes are optional.Don't misunderstand: I like adult beverages as much as anybody. Heck, one of my neighbors kindly dished out candy to my kids and a beer to me, and it was the best treat I can recall, going back at least as far as the time I was handed a fistful of Zotz as a precocious youngster.As much as I like beer, the streets tend to get a little risky when they're bumper-to-bumper with tipsy drivers.This past Halloween had the makings of a doozy - it was a Friday, after all - and I should have known it was going to live up to its billing when I walked out work early Friday morning and encountered a young woman stumbling around the sidewalk outside the News Center.As I prepared to leave, I saw her lurch to and fro before face-planting on the sidewalk. She stayed down for a while, got up, stumbled into the street, navigated back up the curb, then body-surfed the concrete again. She got up, then stumbled into the grass for a little nap.I asked if I could call her friends or a taxi, but she was incoherent, so I called the authorities. The next day, I learned, my wife and her co-workers debated whether I did the right thing, and curiously (to me, anyway) it seems the office was divided on whether I should have "turned her into the cops." (Feel free to let me know your opinion in the comments section below).Regardless, that was just the start of a wild Halloween on two wheels.During the day, I took a recreational ride around Clinton Lake. Without thinking, I rode to Stull. Yep, the purported Gateway to Hell. On Halloween, when the devil himself is said to make an appearance at the haunted old church. Ol' Scratch was a no-show, though, at least in the middle of the day, so I pedaled on home.My ride to work Friday afternoon was uneventful, but on the ride home for dinner I was: yelled at and almost hit by the parent of a cute pirate trick-or-treating downtown; nearly sideswiped by a car turning left in front of me; nearly hit by a car backing out of a parking spot; nearly ridden into the curb by a car pulling into my lane; and, oddly, offered a watermelon by the passenger of a passing car. I declined.Then on my return to work Friday night, I tried to thread my way between a slutty nurse and an escaped convict and almost ran into Moses. The prophet was crossing against the light. Sounds like there should be an 11th Commandment.My next holiday ride should be Thanksgiving. I expect a less eventful ride, though I might encounter an inordinate number of stuffed, sleepy drivers.


coolmom 9 years, 7 months ago

i think you were right to call the police for that young woman. to much can happen to her that she would not appreciate while so inebriated or unconcious. i once stopped by a high school party to check on a friend and found her unconcious in a yard a few doors down and another not inebriated party goer trying to strip her clothes off. safety first in public or private settings and god forbid that was my daughter i would rather a public drunk call than a hurt or killed kid.

mom_of_three 9 years, 7 months ago

I think you did the right thing, because the authorities could determine if she needed medical assistance. Better than leaving her there...

tvc 9 years, 7 months ago

Andrew, I also think you did the right thing. I would be grateful you found me and called the cops versus what might have happened had someone else found me there.

Ragingbear 9 years, 7 months ago

According to our Judge Paula Martin, if you are drunk and something happens to you, then that means that you facilitated it. So it's their own fault if they get raped or killed. That is what our legal system says.

notjustastudent 9 years, 7 months ago

I used to send an old roommate of mine out with a piece of paper with "please call" and our number on it. That way when she couldn't make sense (which happened far too many times, really) she would just hand them the paper, they'd call our place, and my other roommate and I would go get her. I always wished I could be there when she handed it to them... "Do you need help? What's your name? Have you been... what's this a note?" (We only resorted to this after many other failed attempts to get her to stop, and took her to the hospital twice before she finally agreed to seek treatment). Definitely a good idea to call authorities-- most times they check you out for free, and don't charge you with anything. It's strange there were people who thought differently...

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