So last night we decided to commemorate two occasions with one stone: the Finishing of the Christmas Shopping and the Last Night of Irresponsible Childlessness. (Technically, the Second-to-Last Night, but since we’re heading out tomorrow morning early, we won’t be in any position to go celebrate tonight.)
There’s a local jazz band–the Pete Krebs Trio–that Jim had seen before and enjoyed, and they were playing at the Press Club last night. We hopped into the BLT and headed out to the Clinton area.
Suddenly, this huge white thing came billowing up in my face. I shrieked, and realized the car wasn’t moving. Then I realized two other things at the same time: the white thing was the airbag, and there was another car wedged against the door with a frightened-looking girl in the driver’s seat.
I climbed out of Jim’s side of the car, a bit disoriented, and we started piecing together what had happened. At first, I thought either Jim or the other driver had run a stop sign. But as the other people got out of their car and a couple of witnesses approached, we realized that there was construction at the corner we’d just passed and that the stop sign had been removed from its place on the corner. There was a small stop sign attached to a sawhorse placed at the end of a line of sawhorses, but it was impossible to see as you approached the intersection.
If we’d come through the intersection a quarter of a second later, that stove-in part of the car would have included the shattered remnants of my legs…
Fortunately, the people whose car we hit were incredibly nice about it; they could tell that there was no way we could have known there was supposed to be a stop sign there. Their car was also much much less damaged than ours. Things are a little fuzzy–I think I must’ve been in shock or something–but I think their fender might’ve been damaged and that was all.
Also fortunately, we had two witnesses come up and volunteer their information. One works in a building on that corner and saw the whole thing; the other works in a gas station across the street and said that he’s seen tons of near-misses at that intersection since the construction began and that every night except last night that block’s been closed off to through traffic. (The "Road Closed" sign was off to the left of the construction stuff.)
(Right after he shot this picture, Jim dragged the stop sign out from behind the sawhorses enough so that the next driver would be able to see it.)
And although the poor little BLT won’t be making the drive to California tomorrow, it did manage to limp home… groaning with pain and with various lights flashing at us all the way.
The iPod connector and the stereo, though, continued to work absolutely fine. Important things in life and all that.