Glaze On The Highway
Remember Driver’s Ed? I do. I don’t know about you all, but at our school we drove on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and did classroom work on Tuesday and Thursday. The only reason we didn’t drive every day was because the health teacher used the car on Tuesday and Thursday for Sex Ed. Usually, Tuesday and Thursday was book work, simulators that were made in the 1950’s and films. One film in particular, Blood On The Highway, was used to impress upon us young teens the perils of crashing a 3,000 pound vehicle into another vehicle. Or guardrail. Or the asphalt. It was kind of like Faces Of Death meets Scared Straight. It was quite effective. It was filled with all the blood and gore you would expect from a drivers ed video trying to scare the crap out of young, soon-to-be licensed drivers. I think they use one now called Red Asphalt, (there’s a cheery title) with much of the same results, I’m sure. I had been lucky enough through the years not to happen upon one of those horrible crash scenes where the cars are all mangled and the forensics team is walking around with baggies; lucky enough, that is, until today.
I was out running errands when I saw it. It was too late to swerve, and besides, on a 2 lane highway, one never swerves. We learned that on day 1. I followed my training; I grabbed the wheel firmly at 10 and 2 o’clock, let my foot off of the gas, lightly tapped the brakes and prepared for the worst. Nothing. Not even a bump. I looked up into the rear view mirror and caught a glimpse of white, green, tan and a tiny bit of red. Not enough red to be a femoral bleeder, but enough to notice. I also noticed the lack of anything that looked body-ish. Thankfully, there was no one behind me and I was able to peruse the image in the mirror a little more closely. That’s when more details began to emerge. Details like; the victim(s) were more round than I would have expected. They also had obviously not been wearing their seat belts, which would explain the debris field that now littered the road. There were parts all over the road, in the grass along the shoulder and probably on the tires and undercarriage of many a car. My last look at their vehicle confirmed what I already knew, I had done it; I had killed a box of Krispy Kreme donuts.
About a quarter of a mile further up, I took a right headed towards my house. Up ahead I could see something in the road, something eerily familiar; a rectangular white, green and red box with the souls of 12 more poor donuts smashed underneath it. It was at this point that I felt the first tear fall upon my cheek. I looked further still, another hundred feet down the road there were 2 more boxes, both of them torn apart like so much busted plumbing. Donut bodies were strewn across the road, a few survivors lingered in the grass. I pulled over and did what I could, but without a glass of milk my efforts would only go so far. I just thank the lord that these were all glazed donuts, I don’t know if I could have held down my breakfast if there had been any jelly-filled in those boxes. Imagining the horror of a box of eclairs scattered across the blacktop was enough to get me back into the car. I came upon 3 more accident scenes before turning on my street. Who could do this sort of thing? What kind of animal leaves the backdoor to his Krispy Kreme donut delivery truck open while flying down the road? When they find the perpetrator, I hope they throw the book at him. He obviously bears no remorse for his actions; hell, he didn’t even stop, people! He could have saved some of those poor donuts; maybe not for the front row of the display case, but he could have dusted them off and handed them out as free samples to customers around the coffee machine at his next stop. No, probation is too lenient for this animal; he deserves to be dragged behind his panel truck, like that poor dog in Vacation. And I know, as surely as night follows day, that somewhere, right now, in a convenience store near me: a policeman silently weeps next to an empty donut display case.