On the way to work the other day, something was off.
First, at an area just around the corner, on the highway, the traffic came to a sudden stop for no reason. We went from 45mph to stopped in such a short space that i barely avoided hitting the vehicle in front of me, and then the vehicle behind me almost hit me. That was two near misses.
Then, further up where the highway was divided, someone decided to come all of the way across and pull out right in front of me as if i weren't there doing highway speed. By clever maneuvering and probably wearing a good month off of my brakes, it was another near miss.
At the next light, while waiting to take a left to get on the interstate on ramp, i watched as we got a green light, and the lady in the oncoming lane, eyes fixed to her phone, rolled most of the way through before realizing, stopping, and backing up. Near miss number 4.
Once on the interstate, one person didn't even check his side mirror before switching lanes and almost pulling into me, and he honked at me as if it were my fault.
Finally, pulling into the neighborhood where i work, someone almost backed out of her driveway and right into my vehicle.
Believe me, i breathed a sigh of relief and a prayer of thanks that i even made it to work that day.
On the way home, not a single incident, and then i saw it as i pulled into my neighborhood off the highway. Two cars, one with the front bumper crunched, the other with the back bumper in similar condition, and a sheriff's deputy parked right behind them as they filled out their information.
Six lucky near misses for me, and it seemed that the unlucky 7th never happened to me, but to them. It makes me sad for the two of them that their ride home at the end of a day became an unwelcome incident. After all, considering what had happened that morning, i knew it could just as easily have been me sitting there, now wondering when i'm going to get the time to add yet another car repair to my already stretched thin time.
Antique Marine Engine Exposition -- Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT, US (annual exposition of pre-WWII marine engines and models; through tomorrow)
Baba Au Rhum Day -- of course, on rum day, bake some cake with the stuff!
Battle of Blue Licks Celebration -- Blue Licks Battlefield State Park, Mount Olivet, KY, US (to commemorate the Revolutionary War Battle of Blue Licks with living history demonstrations, arts, crafts, games, reenactments and more; through tomorrow)
Bike Van Buren -- Van Buren County, IA, US (a leisurely two-day bike tour of villages, landmarks and landscapes)
Children's Day -- Paraguay
Daimonji Bonfire -- Mt. Nyoigadake, Kyoto, Japan (spectacular bonfires in the shapes of word pictures on the mountains surrounding the city)
Elvis Presley Day -- can you believe he's been gone 37 years?
Festival of the Minstrels -- Tutbury Castle, UK (middle ages; celebrated with great pomp, as the Duke of Lancaster had decreed that they each year elect a new king of the minstrels)
Fete de l'Independance -- Gabon (National Day)
Harmonic Convergence Day -- modern followers of Maya and Aztec calendars
India Independence Day Parade -- Devon Avenue, Rogers Park, Chicago, IL, US (yes, a Celebration of Indian and American Democracy; anything for a party, even another country's Independence Day, right?)
International Federation of Library Association's Annual Conference -- Lyon, France; through the 22nd
International Geocaching Day -- and i must say this stuff looks cool
International Homeless Animals Day® -- International Society for Animal Rights
Joe Miller's Joke Day -- anniversary of the death of English comic actor Joseph Miller in 1738
Leadville Trail 100 Ultramarathon -- Leadville, CO, US (race 100 of the toughest miles in the country through the Rocky Mountains beginning at 4am; you have 30 hours to complete the course to the ghost town of Winfield and back)
Madonna del Voto Day -- Siena, Italy (a/k/a Palio dell'Assunta, 2nd of the traditional yearly horse races)
Minnesota Renaissance Festival -- Shakopee, MN, US (one of the countries largest and finest; weekends through the end of September)
Mt. Hagan Cultural Show -- Mt. Hagan, Papua New Guinea (one of the biggest cultural shows in Papua New Guinea; through tomorrow)
National Airborne Day -- US (honors all Airborne Military)
National Honey Bee Day -- US (this year's theme is Beekeeping: Ask Me How To Get Started)
National Tell a Joke Day -- seems internet generated, but probably related to Joe Miller Joke Day
National Rum Day
Remember What Your Spouse Wore the First Time You Met Day -- internet generated and dangerous!
Restoration of the Republic -- Dominican Republic
Roller Coaster Day -- the first one was patented this day in 1898
Sandcastle and Sculpture Day -- Nantucket, MA, US
St. Roch's Day (Patron of bachelors, dogs, falsely accused people, invalids, surgeons, tile makers; of over 20 cities in Italy as well as Istanbul, Turkey; for relief from pestilence; against cholera, diseased cattle, epidemics, knee problems, plague [Black Death], skin diseases and rashes)
St. Stephen of Hungary's Day (Patron of bricklayers, kings, masons, stonecutters; Hungary; against the death of children)
The World's Greatest Carrot Festival -- Bradford, Ontario, Canada (unleash your inner Bugs Bunny! through tomorrow)
Woodward Dream Cruise Day 2013 -- Detroit, MI, US (what began in 1995 as a fundraiser for a soccer field has grown into the largest one-day classic car show in the world)
Xicolatada -- Palau-de-Cerdagne, France (hot chocolate festival)*
Sean Penn marries Madonna, 1985
Paul Simon marries Carrie Fisher, 1983
Gioachino Antonio Rossini marries Olympe Pélissier, 1846
Seth Peterson, 1970
Steve Carell, 1963
Laura Innes, 1960
Timothy Hutton, 1960
Angela Bassett, 1958
Jeff Perry, 1955
James Cameron, 1954
Kathie Lee Gifford, 1953
Reginald VelJohnson, 1952
Leslie Ann Warren, 1946
Julie Newmar, 1935
Eydie Gorme, 1932
Frank Gifford, 1930
Ann Blyth, 1928
Fess Parker, 1925
Menachem Begin, 1913
George Meany, 1894
T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia), 1888
Bernarr Macfadden, 1868
Amos Alonzo Stagg, 1862
Hongxi Emperor of China, 1378
"Siegfried"(Opera, WWV 86C), 1876
Today in History:
Henry VIII defeats the French at the Battle of Guinegate/Battle of the Spurs, forcing the French to retreat, 1513
Jack Broughton formulates the earliest code of rules for boxing, 1743
Chang and Eng Bunker, the original "Siamese" twins, arrive in Boston to be exhibited, 1829
U.S. President James Buchanan inaugurates the new transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, 1858
Arica, Peru (now Chile) is devastated by a tsunami which followed a magnitude 8.5 earthquake, 1868
Gold is discovered in the Klondike, at Bonanza Creek, 1896
Edwin Prescott patents the roller coaster, 1898
In Valparaiso, Chile, an 8.6 earthquake followed by fire destroys the city and kills 20,000, 1906
The first color sound cartoon, called Fiddlesticks, is made by Ub Iwerks, 1930
Democrats nominate Adlai E. Stevenson as presidential candidate, 1956
Joseph Kittinger parachutes from a balloon over New Mexico at 102,800 feet (31,300 m), setting three records that still stand today: High-altitude jump, free-fall, and highest speed by a human without an aircraft, 1960
A solar flare from the Sun creates a geomagnetic storm that affects micro chips, leading to a halt of all trading on Toronto's stock market, 1989
For only 2nd time Stanley Cup leaves North America (heads to Russia), 1997
In England, two men who created a Facebook site to incite violence during the riots are sentenced to four years imprisonment, 2011
*Yes, they celebrate a hot chocolate festival in the summer. It all started when the 15th of August was a feast day on which the locals always drank a bit much, and the chocolatier of the town claimed his brew was a good remedy the day after. The original festival on the 15th has ceased, but the hot chocolate is brewed to this day, served at 11am promptly.