A Small, Inconsequential Death

Yesterday, I was driving Hilde to a doctor's appointment across town, taking the 101 freeway, in the middle lane, when I glance over, and I see...

Oh, jeezus, there's a kitten in the right-hand lane!

And I'm just starting to think, Can I pull over? Can I stop and run back and...? and we're already past the kitten and I look at the right-hand sideview mirror and I see the kitten vanish underneath the wheel ("OH SHIT! JEEZUS!") of another car. Gone, in a split second.

I drove on, shaken, knowing that I had just watched something die.

This is a bad story, isn't it? No happy ending. But these things happen. Animals, pets, stray onto roads all the time. These things happen.

These things happen.

Wait. I haven't told you everything.

When I first saw the kitten, in the traffic lane, it wasn't trying to cross the road, and it wasn't standing still, paralyzed with fear.

The kitten was sliding and spinning across the asphalt, scrabbling desperately for footing.

I think...

...I think it had, just a second before, fallen out of someone's car.

These things, these things, DON'T have to happen. If you're carrying a pet in your car, you DON'T let it run loose inside. You DON'T leave windows open enough for your pet to squeeze out. You DON'T. You DON'T do that, you stupid, careless, senseless fucker, whoever you were.

(link to a short guide on transporting pets: Carrying Pets Safely)

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