Tonight I began driving home from my sister's house, when a rather rude car approached in my rearview mirror and passed me at 50 miles an hour on a residential city street (not a two lane road). I considered honking at the jackass, but decided a) it is a residential street and after 9pm, b) he is a jackass and by definition would care less that a random car was honking at him, and c) my horn is way whimpy. (I heard recently that this can be remedied - they apparently sell many varieties of horn at car parts stores, so it is just a matter of seeing how many you can sound off before annoying the hell out of everyone in the store or finding the sound to match your personality. I, personally, would like one that is manly, yet not overly aggressive.)
Anyway, the car speeds in front of me, goes through a STOP sign, and about 5 seconds later, a police car with lights a-flashin' also passes me. (and runs the STOP sign.) I proceed to the sign, and STOP like a law-abiding citizen, and another cop car appears suddenly in the mirror just as I am proceeding through the intersection. Flustered, I try to pull to the side and the cop gives a teeny toot with the siren as I watch the two cars in hot pursuit.
As I continue on my way, I see a car, sitting in the middle of the road. But then I realize, the car is not just sitting, it is backing up. And then I realize that the drivers side door is open. And that there is no driver. Like me, two pedestrians are just staring at this unusual phenomenon, and I begin to wonder what I should do. The car did not hit anything. It rolled backward, up over the curb and came to a stop just before hitting a chain link fence. I decided at that point that my work was done. It did not hit anything, the authorities were obviously aware of it, and I didn't have my cell phone. So I drove the 100 or so yards to the next stop and rather stupidly sat there at a red light with my window down thinking how it was cool that I had been in a police chase. Then it occurred to me: an alleged criminal had just jumped from his car to flee on foot a few feet away, and I was sitting there with my window down. I quickly rolled it up, hit the lock button, and grabbed the 8 year old pepper spray keychain my mom gave me for Christmas when I was in college. Would it even work? I know not, but it made me feel a little safer.
For some reason, "The Wire" is constantly recommended on Netflix because I live in Baltimore. I ask you: Why would I want to watch a drama about crime in my own backyard? Especially when real life is right there to remind me a bit too often.