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Make Your Own Roadside Memorial
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I'm sure self-actualization/self-acceptance epiphanies happen to gay people and disabled people and white supremacists and guys who like fat chicks. Those people probably
can pinpoint the specific moment when they conciously realized, that while they might not like it, they are who they are and decide to embrace their true selves and not
apologize for it from that moment on. Lord knows those fucking born-again jesus thumpers can't order a Big Mac without somehow weaving in a reference to their
watershed moment about Christ to the drive through operator.
I remember mine. The cognitive moment I reached enlightenment about myself and accept who I was;
an asshole who enjoyed other peoples' self-induced and senseless pain, occured
at 5:05 on a rainy spring day in 1993. Two minutes prior to my epiphany I was sort of paying attention to the local newscaster who was doing a quick story on a car load
of teens that won an all expense paid trip to the afterlife when they came in second to the train they were racing to a crossing. That story made me smile and focused
my attention on the news. Immediately following that story, and I mean immediately--there wasn't even one of those shitty news segues or tossing it to the co-anchor
sitting two feet to their left so they could take their turn reading the teleprompter, was a report about another idiot 100 miles away getting Burlington Northerned to death
themselves. Some old lady, who witnesses say didn't act like she saw, heard, or even thought to look for a train as she unyieldingly crossed a pair of tracks and got
ground into granny goo.
I lost it. I couldn't stop laughing. Two seperate incidents within hours, within less than a fifty miles from me of dumbfucks eating it underneath trains. Trains for fuck's
sake. They don't fall out of the sky. They don't freely roam the countryside stalking Honda Civics as prey. Trains are loud, they're huge, they run only on designated
tracks, they vibrate the earth, crossing arms come down, warning lights flash and horns sound when they they approach. Helen Keller easily avoided dying underneath one.
Between gasps for air and wiping away tears of laughter, I realized that not only did I not feel bad for laughing, it didn't even enter my mind that I should even consider
feeling bad. That was the moment I realized that dumbasses were put here on earth to cause themselves pain for my guiltless entertainment. More importantly, I realized that
I should always stop before railroad tracks, look both ways, look both ways again and haul ass across them. I sure as shit don't want to help others reach enlightenment
about their assholishness by getting train-raped and ending up on the news
Or worse. How about a ending up on a fucking billboard?
Lord almighty, fuck. Once I had a dumb bitch send me an email essentially goading me to find
her sister's memorial. But
family and friends actually took out a 650 square foot sign so that I wouldn't miss hers. Unfortunately for them, I don't take marketing materials at face value. From
a police summary I learned that at
5:05 pm on a clear April day in 2007 in Sedgwick, Arkansas Briana Arford drove into the path of a train. Spoiler alert: The train didn't swerve.
After 12 years of chronicling roadside memorials and actively looking for a memorial for some dumbfuck who Thomas The Train snuffed out, it is with much, much,
much, unrepentant joy I finally add a picture of a roadside tribute to my collection that itself is a tribute to that eye opening day I accepted who I am.