I’ve decided to walk home from school today. That’s how I’ve ended up standing on this particular street corner waiting for this particular light to change when this particular distinguished-looking middle-aged dude in a scarf and Chesterfield combo steps up beside me. I don’t know him, I’ve never seen him before in my life, but going by his cheerful disposition and expensive demeanor, I’m guessing he’s a banker or businessman, an elder statesman or bestselling literary novelist.
We wait together in silence.
“Screw it!” Scarf Dude steps from curb to crosswalk, beckons for me to follow. “Let’s jaywalk!”
“Huh?” I mumble (as is tradition whenever an adult addresses you unexpectedly).
“No guts, no glory, right? Come on, kiddo, let’s grab life by the—”
A brown convertible being driven by the spit of Kurtwood Smith comes hurtling out of nowhere and not only collides with Scarf Dude, but pulverizes him on the spot, right then and there. Meaty gore washes up the windshield, douses Kurtwood, who, inexplicably, is already blood-soaked and irritable-looking as he floors the accelerator, barrels on down the street.
I back away from the curb.
This is why strangers shouldn’t talk to you.
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