Friday, February 18, 2011

A Glorious Friday Afternoon and New Orleans' Finest

New Orleans pedestrians are among the most aggressive on the face of the planet.  They challenge vehicles, as if daring the drivers to hit them.  Their sauntering, I-have-all-the-time-in-the world gait is infuriating.   And don't get me started on the bicyclists.  It's a literal miracle that more of them don't die on the mean streets of the Crescent City. 

Two of them almost did today.

I'm normally a pretty nice person, considerate of others, and willing to wait my turn in most situations (unless it involves major blood loss, or something in that vein).  I always defer to pedestrians when I'm supposed to -- in crosswalks and at major intersections where signs instruct me to yield to folk on foot.  (Well, almost always).  And I always slow to posted speed, or slower, in school zones.  Children are unpredictable and can dart past a crossing guard on a lark, not thinking about the consequences.

Adults should know better.

I was toodling down Prytania Street earlier, on my merry way to accomplish some stuff, and the light turned green for my direction as the car ahead of me approached the intersection at Napoleon.  Two oblivious young women -- twenty- or thirty-somethings -- stepped into the street to cross, causing the car in front of me to stomp on the brakes and swerve to avoid them.  But, even as they looked up to note that they were crossing against the light, did they return to the sidewalk?  Did they even stop

That would be a big negatory.

And they kept right on strolling!  One of them was even talking on a cell phone!  (There's a shocker, huh?)

Moogie must've been feeling a little peckish this afternoon because I slowed, and as I swerved around them, I laid on the horn.  That got their attention and they stopped long enough to allow me to pass, after they returned to Earth from their startled leaps into the air.

I didn't see the Police car on the other side of Napoleon. 

He woop-wooped his siren at me, and I briefly thought, well, hell.  I'm going to rot in the Orleans Parish pokey for terrorizing thoughtless pedestrians.  But, no.  This is New Orleans!

As I looked at him to see what he wanted me to do, he flashed me a big ol' grin and shot me a thumbs up out his open window.

Sometimes ya really gotta love the cops in this city.


  1. Perfect Moogie. I'm afraid that I don't have the balls to do that very thing but have often wanted to. Two thumbs up from
    the Great White North!

  2. Sometimes ya really gotta love the cops in this city.

    Ah, and there ya go. A "feel good" story like this only comes along once in a (great) while, but I love it when it does.

    I hope you put the Fear O' God in the clue-impaired. It's obvious the cop felt the same.

  3. Nice.

    I still remember driving home from the French Quarter one night. I was on Rampart, sitting at a light--rum drink in my hand like an idiot--when an NOPD cruiser pulled up alongside me. Being cool, I just lowered the drink below window-level so the nice officers could not see it. Unfortunately--and probably due to the influence of a few earlier rum drinks, when the officers looked over at me and we made eye contact, the first thing I did was go: "How you doing?" and raised my hand with the go-cup in it as a salute.
    I realized what I'd just done as soon as I'd done it. Cue the facepalm. Cue the loud "DOH!" Big sigh. SO busted.

    The two officers just looked at me. Then the driver pointed at the ground and said: "Boy, pour that out." And I dumped it like it was on fire.
    "Boy, don't you hit nothing on my beat, you understand?"
    "Yessir!" I replied.
    And with that, the officers drove away, leaving me sitting there with Oliver, my first Shepherd, looking at me like I was the world's prize jackass.

    Ah, good times.

  4. New orleans has to be the most colorful town any funny!

  5. Moogie, same here! Shreveport is just as bad. BTW, I spend about 3 hours a day in a patrol car in the lot of a large hospital...crud, don't get me started about pedestrians...I'm telling you, DON'T GET ME STARTED!!!

    I do often wonder if it's a Louisiana Thang...