Carnage Lottery

I play the carnage lottery.

At least a couple of somebodies lost the lottery today, bits of their journey sprinkled south along the highway an impressive distance downwind from the where the automotive carcass had skidded to a halt -- a slurry of glass, plastic and metal kipple impelled by inertia to bounce and skitter on in blissful ignorance of the fact that their collective mission of travel has been cancelled.

Two trucks, the locomotives of the road, were twisted around each other like tangled kites. It is like seeing dead lions. Predators rent open like prey.

Smaller cars, dented or bent, crouched at the side of the road or at odd angles across the lanes. The way behind them was a fairground of ambulances and police, with lots of red lights and yellow tape. Beyond that was a solid river of stopped cars undulating away to the twilight horizon, a southbound pudding of caravans and speeders and freighters whose voyage had been subverted by gore.

It was twilight. In pockets, people had started to get out of their cars to stretch or smoke cigarettes or shoot the shit with one another. Some people were lucky or smart enough to have brought books, so they turned on the cabin lights in their cars and sat back to read. Children in SUVs watched Pixar on DVD.

And me? I was northbound.

I flew by at a hundred and twenty and watched the scene dwindle in my mirrors, chewing raspberry flavoured gum.


Dan Hulton said...

Here in Kingston, I noticed a great deal of big-truck-traffic skittering about on the "side roads" to the 401. Both I and the secretary where I'd been interviewing theorized an accident.

We may have been viewing the same deal, just from a different vantage point.

Cheeseburger Brown said...


Reckless trucks are scary. It is my conviction, though, that the majority of the trucks on the road are pretty safe. Truck drivers are usually the last ones to do something unexpected or risky, in my opinion.

(Of course a statistician I am not. Anecdotal, only.)


Derek said...

Like other lotteries (the financial scam ones usually run by the state to tax the stupid), this is another kind I'm happy not to play (at all if possible). And people wonder why I'd want to hide all day in my basement.