A Tiny Plea

For those of you celebrating the civil New Year tonight, please don’t drink and drive. I take this very personally, because 12 years ago, my sister, then 18, was hit almost head-on while driving, by a drunk driver with a list of priors as thick as an old NYNEX telephone book. He’d been in a bar, and the bartender had taken his keys away, but he had a spare set. I’m given to understand he got a nice taxpayer-funded vacation in a stone hotel somewhere out of the deal.

Her defensive driving probably saved her life, as she was able to swerve and avoid a full head-on collision. As it was, the crash put the engine block of my parents’ Chevy SUV on her feet.

She had serious injuries, went into hypermetabolism, and is still suffering the aftereffects today. She lost her last year of high school and had to do extensive adult ed to catch back up, due to a curriculum change. I’m very grateful our family didn’t have to bury her that year, but by the same token, she has never been the same since.

Please don’t drink and drive. The life you save may not even be your own. Thank you.

Note: And for the dati folks out there, the minor fast of the Tenth of Tevet, which commemorates the beginning of the siege of Jerusalem by the Babylonians, begins at 6:33AM tomorrow and ends at 5:26PM. Drink lots of water!

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