I passed a truck today, one of those six story tall tractor trailers. As I checked my side mirror to move into the lane ahead of him, I noticed his big front bumper was dented. What, I wondered, dented that thing? It looked just short of four feet tall, a slight exaggerration, maybe, but just slight.
A dent, you see, is a badge of warning to others, this vehicle has been going at it with something else. These scars are the witnesses.
So what is the story? Is it something the driver did? Were they at fault? I know from driving dented cars that it's not always the driver's fault but I hear myself wondering when I'm in such a vehicle. I want to attach a large post-it to the dent, "THIS WAS NOT MY FAULT" lest they think the dent proof that I'm a threat.
But I can't help thinking of the drivers going by and wondering, "What did you do to dent your door? Why is your back end bashed in? How is the whole right side of your truck dented in? Where is your hood?"
Okay, the hood may not be an accident's result but it's still a sign of something amiss. I also find dirty cars a sign of something amiss, along with cars leaving a stream of black or gray smoke, or one with a cracked windshield or broken headlight or tail light. That's why I always fix things right off, keep the car right clean, sir, so they won't see me coming.
Past all that, I want to know the story of what happened and why. It's another story, another clue in another life to what's been happening to them.
Or their car.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com