“School’s back in so watch out for the little ones – they won’t be watching for you.” How many times did we hear our favorite DJ say that on morning radio? I know – I must have said it about ten million times. Cliché? Whatever – it’s still a great reminder.
As I was leaving Bill Miller’s yesterday morning, just as the morning sun was peaking over the horizon, my attention was nabbed by the revving of an engine. I turned to see a guy around 30 years-old leave the drive through like it was the beginning of the Indy 500. He turned left and raced across the still dark parking lot at a rate of speed Mario Andretti would envy. His little toy car Altima was straining to give him the power he was demanding.
He flew past 3 cars and two trucks, and me as I mounted my black steed.
His tires squealed as he turned right out onto the main street. Thank God there weren’t many cars on the road at 6:30am because he had no intention of stopping to check for oncoming traffic. He was through the light and gone in a matter of seconds.
So as I took a minute to ponder where on earth he needed to be in such a hurry that early on a Sunday morning it hit me. What if a little girl had been crossing the parking lot with her daddy at that moment? What if an elderly grandpa was making his way to the front door for his weekly coffee with his old military buddies? A great many lives would have been tragically changed in a split second.
So I authored this Facebook post:
So this is not directed at any of you because I know my Facebook friends are not guilty of doing this. No, I am sending this out to the guy racing the black Altima through the parking lot of Bill Miller’s 5 minutes ago.
I too love speed, bro. In fact no-one loves it more than me. BUT it has it’s time and place. If you would like you may choose your weapon, (race car, motorcycle, or even your little boy Altima), and you and I can go at it on the track. And after I wear your butt out for a few laps and you are used up – maybe you won’t race through parking lots.
Here’s my point – there are little kids and grand-kids in those parking lots, MINE included, and I love them more than anything on this planet. I will not let some crap-weasel like yourself take them out. I’m there every weekend eating breakfast. If I see you do it again you will meet me and have the opportunity to take your childish antics to the race track – where the big boys play.
This post struck a nerve and I am flooded with stories of cars racing through parking lots, school zones, and residential neighborhoods.
I come from a family of racers. My dad owned two speedways, my brother traded paint with Foyt, Allison, Wallace, and many others. I raced in the series that features the fastest stock cars in Texas. I raced everything that had an engine and tires. Dirt track, asphalt, big and small. Racing cars is very cool. It’s a rush like non other. I will probably do it again someday just for grins.
Racing through a parking lot does not make you cool. It makes you an idiot. Killing a kid while doing it makes you subhuman.
I’m sure there are no parking lot racers reading this, but if by chance one of you pretend NASCAR big boys stumble across this – I have two words for you.