Monday, September 02, 2019


A crew showed up to put speed bumps on the street above the school where I work. For a few months I enjoyed a supremely smooth ride over that hill on the new asphalt poured after the pothole riddled surface had been stripped away. And it's not so tough, considering the majority of my route is still filled with tank traps and chasms large enough to swallow pets and small children. A speed bump is a necessary civic reminder to those of us who can get up any real velocity to remember that there are pets and small children about and that we should be mindful of our progress through the neighborhood.
Speed bumps certainly had that effect once upon a time on the street where I live. The roar of minorly tuned engines in front of the house where teenage girls lived dissipated after a few of those custom street machines bottomed out while making the circuit around the block. Sure, we had to endure a few massive scraping sounds as these young turks began to understand that the track was now closed, but that was some time ago.
Even longer ago was the drag strip just east of my parents' house when I was growing into my driver's license. It was a residential quarter mile with no stop signs. Just a block to the left or right would have meant that I would have had to deal with school zones and those big red octagons. No thank you. Not when I had places to be and a stereo turned up loud.
That has changed too. There are now traffic circles that are designed to bend and constrict the flow of traffic on many of the thoroughfares in my hometown. I don't know where the boys take their cars these days to show off their testosterone. Or maybe these concrete and asphalt constructions actually have the effect for which they were intended. Maybe they influence the speed of traffic enough that they don't have to sit a police car at each end, waiting for someone to light up that radar detector for their excesses.
And all of this got me thinking: Why not put speed bumps in the hallways of elementary schools? The number of each day I have to remind boys and girls that we walk in hallways would probably diminish a great deal after a few of them dropped their transmission while sprinting to the water fountain.
Something to think about.

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