As we enter a period of warmer days when the snow begins its speedy melt, I am reminded of the peril of muddy, slushy puddles on the NDSU campus. When you couple the puddles with pre-occupied drivers who are in a hurry and multi-tasking (be it by singing, texting, talking on the phone or waving to friends) a hazard condition emerges that every walker in the near vicinity is vulnerable to – the mud puddle splash.
I know the mud piddle splash all too well. I have been the recipient of it a few times on the campus. There I was walking along minding my own business when a driver barreled past me on the nearby road and achieved maximum mud spray velocity. The next thing I knew, I looked like Pigpen and had shared with the world my expansive cussing repertoire. And the drivers – well they never did stop – they appeared to be oblivious.
But not this year. Oh no, this year I am tuned into this hazard and I refuse to fall victim to it again. I watch and I wait to ascertain that it is safe before I enter the danger zone (the vicinity closest to the puddled street).
It is a good thing too as I have already seen casualties this year. Getting splashed with mud as you innocently go about campus minding your own business can be a real day-ruiner. People look at you as if you are slovenly and despicable, when in reality you were just the victim of bad timing, bad manners or both.
Today I speak out for all the folks like me who have been victims of the mud puddle splash when I say to drivers everywhere: please exercise courtesy and care as you travel about during the thaw – your inattention could result in another’s muddy misery. And frankly folks, this isn’t the kind of mud I want to wrestle with.
Day nine hundred and seventy-four of the new forty – obla di obla da