the wretched condition of the American news media, this post just might end up being the most penetrating piece of investigative journalism that you get to read all week.
A discussion was initiated over the past two monthly newsletters about the ice cream truck that is frequently seen driving through the neighborhood. A resident voiced suspicions about this person's intentions and solicited feedback.
Twenty-two residents offered comment. Raising the question was completely reasonable and appropriate, but here's what astonished me: of those twenty-two respondents, not one reported having asked the ice cream truck driver a couple of neighborly questions (except for one person who apparently once told him to get lost). An inquiry was launched, suspicions were expressed about security, an investigation was begun into the legality of operating ice cream truck around here, but nobody appears to have engaged in actual communication with the person of concern (or if they DID, the news didn't make it back to me).
For goodness sake, if there's something going on in the neighborhood about which you have legitimate questions, then trot your bottom out your front door and simply ask about it. Either that, or send me an email via Centerpointe.firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll be happy to do it for you! Or if for some reason you suspect that a situation is unsafe, call the League City Police. But however this present situation unfolds, I do believe that everyone would be better served if the neighborhood didn't jump into a Bogeyman decision tree before even confirming who the players are, and what they're doing.
So I did that very thing, pursuing the poor ice cream man down White Oak Pointe like a dog-jogging madwoman earlier this evening.
And guess what else?? Mike says that there's more than one ice cream truck company operating in this area. If we go through a spell where the selling of packaged ice cream feels more like a plague of locusts than a microbusiness engaging in mobile retail activity, I suspect it's not because Mike feels compelled to consume the balance of his golden years in endless circulation of Centerpointe. It might be because we've got multiple unrelated trucks coming through, each not knowing that another has recently been here.
|AAUUUGH!!! IT'S THAT MUSIC AGAIN!!!!|
Plague of locusts pic from
Meanwhile, here's my challenge to all of you:
Don't take my word for it! Go say "Hi" to Mike, the ice cream employee who diligently follows his employer's route instructions, the next time you see him. Make a little small talk with him, enough to get the beginnings of a 'feel' for him as a human being.
After you get done with that, comment below (or send me an email if you wish to remain anonymous), and answer me this:
Which do you think is more likely? Does your gut (based on your newfound actual experience rather than a bandwagon of generalized hysteria) suggest that this guy might be trouble? Or does he seem more like the kind of guy who would call the police on your behalf if he happened to be driving by your house when you weren't home and saw something that didn't seem quite right?
Remember, it cuts both ways.
|Boo Radley thumbnail from the film adaptation of one of the greatest American novels of all time, To Kill A Mockingbird. For those who may not be familiar with the story, |
Boo was widely demonized by his local community,
but he saved the lives of two children.
(Photo source: http://www.saraethompson.com/megan_port/subject_web/bios.html)