Monday, May 23, 2016

Was I a Headline This Morning? My Adventure on Chicago's Dan Ryan Expressway ( 9-9:46 AM on May 23, 2016)




 "Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no." Ian Betteridge's Law of Journalism

" A Semi driver was shot and seriously wounded as he drove north on the Dan Ryan Expressway near 95th Street on Thursday night, the second shooting on a Chicago expressway in five days and among more than a dozen this year, state police said." - Chicago Tribune

Taking a friend to the airport is a task that most of us view as a simple obligation to family and friends.  Taking a friend to the airport in Chicago is another matter. For a resident of the Morgan Park neighborhood, the choice of route depends upon the airport - Midway Airport, or O'Hare. Midway is a breeze - head north on Cicero Ave to 63rd street and get in the right lane.  Going to O'Hare should be determined by the Tolls, or the Chicago traffic. One can easily go directly to O'Hare on Interstate 294 and pay a couple of tolls, if one is going directly to O'Hare. My task required a trip to River Forest; thus, the Dan Ryan and the Ike.

Recently the stretch of the Dan Ryan between 127th Street and 95th Street has been the site of a number of lethal thug killings and woundings.  These incidents that the media and political social justice charlatans call 'gun violence' have boosted Chicago's reputation as the nation's number one Thug Comfort Zone and will only increase the municipal exeunt omnes brought on by such law makers and loud mouths.

I left the barn for my good deed a few minutes before 9 AM.  As my friend's flight on United was scheduled for 1:45 PM and required a three hour pre-TSA Mugging arrival and the one hour and change it takes to get to Division and Harlem, I did not wish to shoot craps with Jane Byrne Interchange Cluster Hug.

Driving 111th Street east to Ryan is a breeze.  People from Beverly, Morgan Park, Roseland, Mount Greenwood, Washington Heights and Fernwood are generally traffic observant and friendly.  There is also the neighborhood's bastion of Service and Protection - the 22nd District of Chicago Police Department at Monteray - just before the Dan Ryan entrance ramp on Hamlet Street.

There was a red light before the ramp and I was enjoying WCDB 90.5 jazz,when my car jarred.

The driver of a red, late-model Nissan Altima had bumped me. As it was slight bump, I turned in my seat and waved off any concern for the driver's inattention, or technical problem.  Seconds passed and the light changed.  I took my foot off the brake and checked my rear view mirror - the driver, a thirty-something African American man, was screaming at me and laying on the horn - He was saying that I am a Caucasian Fornicator of Oedipal Inclinations.

I recalled the recent spat of Dan Ryan shootings.  Though they took place during wee small hours of the mornings, perhaps the huge thick portion day-break was not out of the question: 1. the man hit me. 2. I was sure that he was not infuriated because I had not given him the opportunity to make a clean breast of things concerning his violation Secretary of State Jesse White's Rules of the Illinois Roads. The driver was going apeshit and now was trying to run me off the road.

I am a very good driver and I did not want to allow my nemesis to pull up even with me.  After checking on-coming traffic in the rear views, I hit the brakes and swerved in behind the red Nissan and we engaged what can only be described as an expressway dogfight - doing vehicular Immalmans, and two dimensional barrelrolls from 111th Street all the was to 87th Street when I managed to secure my place behind this person who intended no good for me.

On several occasions my enemy in this duel of American ( I drive a Chevy) and Japanese cars managed to pull up next to and began lowering his window. With my peripheral vision I gauged traffic and looked for a firearm and hit the brakes whenever he was close to giving me a more robust burst from his arsenal of epithets concerning my race, or a sound hosing of 9mm pills.

Just past 87th Street, I made a call to 911 and asked for Illinois State Police - I gave the make, model and Illinois license plate numbers and hung up.  I was not going to pull over and test Dame Fortune with this gent. All the time I managed to stay behind this guy.

No State Troopers anywhere, Not at 63rd.  Not at 47th Canaryville.  Not at Sox Park.  Not at Chinatown and the guy was staying with me - though just ahead me.  He kept turning his head to shout at me.   I called again and was told that ' we are covering an accident.'

I followed him to the Ike at the Jane Byrne Interchange onto 290 and west side.  The guy pulled as far to the right as he could and I remained on his tail.  He faked an exit at Racine. Another at Western Ave. and gave no indication that he was going to allow me top avoid a confrontation with him.

Finally, he gave up at Homan Ave. and I continued on to pick up my friend and take her to O'Hare.  we arrived in plenty of time.


After fulfilling my simple task on that particular Holy Trinity Sunday, I headed back to 111th Street and went into 22nd. District Headquarters and made a hit and run complaint, as that was my only means of getting on the record - he hit me on Hamlet Street and that was not on the Dan Ryan.  I did not pull over and 'wait' for the Illinois State Police show up.

Mostly, I did not wish to be headline - 63 year old shot in yet another expressway incident - no suspects.

As it is, I was blessed by God.

I have no idea what the other guy is all about.



1 comment:

CurrentChoices said...

YOU sinned probably by.....OBEYING Traffic sign/signals causing Fellow to strike YOUR car in the REAR! Fender Bender Scams also in the back of most people minds=Survival Instincts.
Guardian Angel/St Christopher on OT...these Days!