There I was, driving along, minding my own business on my way to pick up the kids from summer camp. In front of me was a normal, unassuming newer Lexus GX SUV—the 7 passenger kind. The only thing that really struck me about it was that it had one of those “In Memoriam” decals across the top of the back window. I find it odd that some people choose to put that type of lettering on their vehicles, but eh, whatever—to each his own, live and let live. As I was driving behind this SUV—it was just the two of us for some stretch—I noticed a couple of kids bouncing around; yep, unbelted. That isn’t so uncommon around here, but you’d think that someone with a Lexus might know a little better. Ah, there I go ASSuming. Silly me.
I’m still behind the SUV until we reach a light, when they pull over into the right lane and we’re both positioned first in line, side by side. Then I look over to see how old the kids are that are unbuckled. Now really, I’m not one to get angry or upset when I see unbuckled kids. It’s not in my nature. In fact, I might be one to have a Darwin fish on the back of my van 😉 . I do educate children when I can, because as dumb as their parents can be about buckling up, kids *can* take control of their own safety when it comes to seat belts and they *can* wear them properly when they are taught how to do so and why. So, keep in mind I’m thinking “idiot driver” in a split second as I look over at the jumping kids. I see a girl about 8 or 9 years old leaning on the dash board—whoo, won’t she fly when that airbag goes off! A girl of either similar age or slightly younger behind her in the 2nd row, possibly another unbuckled school-aged child. But right then and there I nearly lost it. Sitting behind the driver was a woman with a 3-5 month old baby on her lap. I guess she was planning on using the baby as her personal airbag. They were turning into a retail area just after the light and if there hadn’t been traffic behind us, I would have gone after them to give them the whatfor, plus some serious how-tos. There was no car seat in the back seating area that I saw. I did manage to get their license plate number and reported them to our buckle up hotline after we got home. I thought about calling the police, but when I’m angry, I’m a blathering idiot and I wouldn’t have been able to accurately describe where they turned into (“It’s that place with the Burger King and the gas station with the expensive gas and the fast food Italian and blah blah blah . . .”). They were gone by the time my kids and I got back to the retail area. If they hadn’t pulled into the retail area, I would have followed them and called the police because I could have told them directions and street names at least, lol.
I guess what shocked me most was that it was someone who was wealthy enough to drive a Lexus for which the minimum price is $45K, someone who presumably is intelligent enough to hold down a job that pays enough to purchase said vehicle, but who can’t be bothered to use a freaking $49 convertible seat or the seat belts that come attached to the vehicle? This someone also has experienced a loss deep enough to warrant putting an “In Memoriam” decal on the back window, yet can’t be bothered to make sure anyone in the vehicle uses the most basic of life saving devices. What a numbskull.