about the talking fish

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Writer. Wheelman. Occasional DIY mechanic. Walking collection of hang-ups. Hopeless romantic. Old-school. Analog soul in a digital world. I am all of these things and more.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Funny how some mishaps can be avoided just by not deciding to do something or go somewhere.

All day I had planned to go to SM Bicutan on the way home to see if I could get an issue of Autocar Asean. Getting off the Skyway, I had already prepared to make a U-turn toward the mall, but I stopped because I waited for the traffic on the other lane to clear. Then I felt an infuriating thud on my rear.

Turns out a white MGE taxi braked into my right rear bumper and left a palm-sized dent. So I did the usual: check for the license, get the driver's contact info, and we were (un)fortunate (you'll see why) to have a traffic enforcer come along and sketch the accident site. The problem was that this officer took his time doing a sketch that I frankly could've done in less than a minute, and it wasn't helping things as our position already compromised the traffic on both Doña Soledad Ave. and the Skyway off-ramp.

Then IT happened.

While we were finishing up and preparing to separate the vehicles, I heard another thud on my car. This time the offending party was a police dispatch truck, and it left a black palm-size scrape on my right front bumper. I just snapped. I yelled at the offending police cruiser all vitriol and bad temper spewing out of me (to my surprise I didn't cuss).

The truck stopped and the police driver got off in an arrogant swagger. He was civil enough to ask what could be done about the damage, but he was obviously impatient and had the look that said "you're worthless" on his face. They were supposedly on red alert (God knows particularly what that was for) and they couldn't wait so he decided to run my bumper and leave a souvenir.

Before I did anything I'd regret later, I told the errant cop to get out of there.

While following the traffic cop's motorbike in heavy Bicutan evening traffic, I heard another thud from the inside. The errant taxi driver which was tailing me got off and told me my rear bumper "healed" the dent itself, so all it left was a white paint scrape half the length of my forearm. I inspected it again and he was right. We decided to lay off the police report in exchange for paying me PhP200 to foot the bill for touch-up paint. An agreeable amicable settlement for me and my parents (who are in Baguio right now), so all we had to do was to get our licenses back from the traffic management office.

I'm cool with the taxi driver now; he seemed like a good man who was unfortunate enough to passenger two lost souls who didn't know how to go to Pasay and mistook the Skyway for a route going there.

My beef is with the police. I understand they have their own reasons for red alert but couldn't they have been a little more considerate as drivers? We were already going to separate our cars and hie off to the traffic office. That could've taken just a minute. Worse, they acted as if they had every right to bash into my car. Red alert or not, that's still a quasi-delict.

Sigh...if only I decided to go straight home.

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