Photo: @PJ (Twitter)
I went on a memorial (and protest) ride this afternoon for Mark Angeles, a recent Reed grad and by-all-accounts Swell Guy who was killed by a distracted driver not terribly far from where we live. 100s of bikes. The awesome Olive Rootbeer and Dingo Dizmal brought up the rear of the chain on their tall clown bikes.
This huge group stopped for a long moment of silence at the Ghost Bike marking where Mark was killed. It started out awkward but as the silence grew so did a deep sadness. There is something in a huge gathering of silent people that draws the soul out. The Quakers are onto something there.
I imagined Mark's family, so proud at his recent achievement (graduating Reed is Not Easy)…his friends who had such awesome things to say…I thought of his last minutes on our world, the one we share, all of us, Swell Guys and douchenozzles alike. He spent those last minutes on the inhuman pavement in front of a minimart. I never met Mark but I suspect our world is worse for his absence. Olive and Dingo were hugging a few feet from me and crying and I nearly lost it. One driver started berating the huge group which was slowing traffic through the intersection. Dingo said a few words to her, I don't know what, and as she drove off she shouted “I love you guys!”
I can think of nothing more senseless than for a person to die for the idle convenience of another. When I see a douchenozzle eating yogurt while driving, that senselessness rises to the surface. The world is full of Shit Happens but THIS Shit sure as hell doesn’t have to happen.