I suppose for many people on July 4, in the United States, it’s hard to say “no” to imbibing a cold alcoholic beverage (or two, or ten) during one of the myriad of barbecues and festive events happening during this auspicious holiday.
I mean, I am pretty sure this is the American Holiday that brought us “Drunk Watermelon” and garbage cans full of “Jungle Juice.” Why do I think that? Because according to the police scanner these summer beverages pair best with explosives.
One might wonder if people NEED to get drunk, in order to appreciate the sounds and colors of supposed Independence at the end of the night.
I didn’t have any Fourth of July plans. My day was pretty much like every other day, with the exception of trying out a new Chicken Teriyaki recipe, and firing up the grill to make a beautiful meal that probably SHOULD have been photographed and put on Instagram. I drank a nice Sparkling Lavender Water, and listened to sirens and fireworks.
And, let me tell you, the sirens and the fire works went all day, and well into the night. So, I just had to tune into the police scanner.
Would you like to scare yourself into never drinking again, and staying off the roads on a holiday? Then listen to the scanner on a day like July 4th. It is one call right after another of drunken, violent, idiotic, preventable, controllable nonsense. Most of which is all fueled by intoxication.
I’ve never had so much compassion for our emergency response teams before.
As I listened to the dispatchers taking calls, patching in officers, and making instant decisions; I couldn’t help but be surprised and amused. I listen to the scanner every now and again, but I have never tuned in for hours at a time, where there are very few breaks in the feed. Yesterday was one of those days.
Selfishly, I kept waiting for someone to call about fireworks being shot off near my house (illegal to do because I am in city limits.) A few calls came in about the disturbance, but the officers were never able to make it to those calls, because more pressing issues would over ride their direction.
Drunk drivers. Runaways. Fights in parking lots. A naked woman in the back of a cargo van with the doors open. A man with no legs had fallen out of his wheelchair and was passed out on the side walk. Grass fires all over town. Domestic Violence disturbance. Reports of gunshots. A sixty year old man, on LSD had fallen down, hit his head and was unconscious….
The calls just kept coming. All these people seem to be going to some weird mental extreme to express their “Independence.” But how many of these people woke up today, July 5; only to realize they may have just lost what little Independence they may have had yesterday?
How many people ended their night with the vision of red, white, and blue flashes of an emergency vehicle taking them to jail, or to the hospital. Maybe even the flashes of light behind smoke as firefighters douse fires on property, like homes.
How many people will have their cars towed, and their licences revoked? How many will have lost their pets in the chaos? How many of them will be impressed with deep regret for their carelessness? How long will the blotter brief be, after two days of full throttle parties?
I don’t know, I am just glad I wasn’t apart of any of that nonsense.
We choose where we go, and what we do. We have a responsibility toward ourselves and our fellow humans, to be self responsible. How many people were doing just that, only to have someone else encroach on their life with bad decision making? It happens more often than we would like to admit, and a “holiday” is no excuse for that behavior.
And, this is what I was worried about; If I don’t drink, and I going to become an even more Judgey McJudgerson and the Judgeyville Judgers – type person, again?
No. No. I don’t think I am being judge-y. I am telling it like it is, based off of clear observation. Yesterday and the day before, was a SHIT SHOW for emergency response teams, and I am guessing that 80% of those calls were preventable; that is, if people presented a modicum of self control.
Holiday’s and celebrations seem to trigger the thinking that everything is a “free for all”, and self control goes out the window. It appears people believe the norms of function go on hiatus for 24-72 hours surrounding a celebration. It isn’t healthy. And, worst of all, it appears to be a self-feeding beast. It is an energy that we, as Americans have been fermenting for quite some time now, and it feels like it might burst.
If you enjoy following these posts, feel free to like, share, or leave a comment. I would love to hear about your July 4, 2017. Did anything crazy happen? Did you have any realizations about Independence? For updates on new posts, press the FOLLOW button.
To read the first four parts of this saga, click the links below! Cheers!