Justice is Inefficient and Inconvenient

I mentioned it only briefly on this site, because I was ill at the time and that took more of my attention, but last year I witnessed an apparently-drunk driver hit a parked car. I reported it to the police at the time, and gave a statement and all that, and figured I’d never have to care about it again. But then, just a month or two ago, I got a subpoena telling me to appear in court. I was surprised to learn that it is apparently common for things to take this long, or longer. I don’t know what I was expected to contribute to the proceedings. If I was expected to pick out the guy in court, I was not confident I would be able to remember what a guy I saw for about four minutes over a year ago looks like (I was, in fact, very confident I would not be able to). But I had planned on going, because that’s what the paper told me to do. And since court is done in the daytime (not like on television), that meant I’d have to be awake in the daytime. It’s terrible.

I booked two nights off work and began adjusting my sleep schedule to minimize how much I’d hate the world. But then, yesterday, the day before I was supposed to go to court, I got a phone message telling me the driver had plead guilty and now I wasn’t needed. I wish I’d been told that week earlier, eh?

Anyway, in the buildup to this, I noticed that, on the night I witnessed the event, I wrote a note in a text file on my desktop and still had it. Even though it’s been a year since I gave the info to the police, I’d hate to delete this, so why not stick it on my website?

It was about 4:50 and I was heading downhill at around 5300 South St. There was a vehicle (a big vehicle, some kind of jeep or suv or something. It was a dark color, perhaps black or dark blue or something, it is hard to tell at night) about three car lengths ahead of me, which had pulled onto the street making a left turn from Queen St. just as I was finishing my delivery nearby. This vehicle was about three car lengths ahead of me, moving the same direction, until it hit a car parked at the right side of the road. The vehicle continued moving forward after the hit, for some distance, but I don’t know if it was trying to continue driving or just if it was rolling after the driver had lost control. When the vehicle stopped, I stopped as well. I approached just as the driver was getting out and going around to the passenger’s side to see the damage to his car. The front wheel on that side was badly damaged and seemed to be nearly coming off.
I asked if he was okay, he said he was. I asked if he had a phone, but he did not answer that, just continued looking at the damage. I did not see any other passenger in his vehicle and he seemed fine. With the damage to his vehicle, I did not think he would be a risk for a Hit and Run, because he would not be capable of the run part. Still, I wrote down his license plate just in case (F** **7). Since I was still working, and since it didn’t seem like I could do anything there, I left to finish my next delivery.
The driver of the vehicle was either a white male, or a very light-skinned brown. He had dark hair, probably brown or black, and (I think) glasses and facial hair. He was wearing light clothes.

And now that that is immortalized on my site, I can get it off my computer. Anyway, as I write this, five hours from when I was due to be at court, I note that I actually have some disappointment that I can’t go. I felt that way too the time I got out of jury duty, but this would actually have been easier even than that. While jury duty would have disrupted my life for a week or more, this was a day or so tops, I assume. It would have been neat to see how things work. Ah well.

Super Sunday: Mystery Fighters

The Situation

A group of teenagers investigate supernatural strangeness and, when necessary, beat it up.

When these four friends investigated their first mystery, a strange kid in their neighbourhood, they made a friend in the half-human, half-otherwoldly creature named Byron G. Rothschild. Now that they have a real live supernatural being on their side, there’s nothing they can’t handle, right?

The Characters

Lucy Suss

The leader of the Mystery Fighters, Lucy is an expert in all things rope-related. She can tie or untie knots, she can throw a lasso, and she is always prepared. She’s an expert at making connections, with ropes and with mysteries. She’s the one who ties the team together.

Lucius Suss

Lucius is Lucy’s twin brother. He’s a sensitive quiet type, who gets overwhelmed when he’s in a loud environment or a crowd, but he is extremely perceptive. He’s the one who will pick up on little details that the others may miss. He uses a specially modified shield when he fights mysteries.

Marjorie Steeler

She may seem like the team’s muscle, and she is, but Marjorie is no dummy. What she likes is the research part of an investigation. If she gets to go through some town’s old newspapers or a murder victim’s diary, she’s ready and willing to turn up whatever facts are needed. She’s also in the contending for the world record of Most Mummies Punched.

Dorian Clock

Dorian is the team’s tech guy, but he’s also the team’s public face. He’s more social than those other losers, so he manages the team’s website and social media presence, and is the one who drums up their cases. He’s also the team member that is least useful in a fight, though the others don’t hold it against him.


I’m calling it a sitcom, because that’s what this year is about, but I see this one more as an action mystery show. It’d be comedic, because these are idiotic teenagers, but if it were a real thing, I’d want actual mysteries. Someone pay me to make this show happen, please!

Superman Need Not Always Be Punching

One of the things I want from Superman stories, and superhero stuff in general, is for them to not always be about beating up the bad guys. Honestly, that can happen. You can use superheroes for interesting sci-fi premises that are about ideas other than violence and villainy. The Silver Age Superman books for were great for that stuff. We can have that again. We need to have that again.

I’m not just saying that we need stories where the heroes resort to non-violent means to bring down the villains. We do need that, of course, Lois and Clark should be bringing down as many criminals with their writing as they do with their punches. But also, I want stories that aren’t about villains who need to be stopped by violence or otherwise. I know we all like to blame people, but sometimes bad things happen that aren’t directly caused by people who we then need to punish.

I think that comics writers hear that kind of thing and assume that with no villain, there is no conflict, but there’s a lot to learn from watching things like the Twilight Zone or better episodes of Star Trek. Superhero comics, I think, would do well to move into that kind of conceptual space, instead of everything being a punching contest. I don’t know that I have more to say on the topic than that.

Anyway. With that said, I will now proceed to make myself look like a hypocrite by spending a lot of time in future weeks talking about how we can improve the villains in Superman comics. Oh well.

Canadian Is Poet, Doesn’t Know It

Today’s Heritage Monument is about the creation of the poem In Flander’s Field. A WWI doctor, John McCrae, is bummed about that whole war thing and people dying and such, so he writes a poem. He then hands it to some guy and claims he doesn’t know what it is. It’s weird. The poem’s Wikipedia page does say that “[a]ccording to legend, fellow soldiers retrieved the poem after McCrae, initially dissatisfied with his work, discarded it” but in this commercial McCrae doesn’t discard it, he hands it to this one guy. If he was discarding it, he’d surely rip it out of the book or something. Is this guy McCrae’s personal whole book discarder? Did they have those yet, or were they invented in WWII?

There is something to be said for the idea that McCrae was overcome by some muse, created his poem, and barely realized what he’d done. I dunno. That’s the best I can manage in explaining this. I have nothing else to add.

This one gets only Two and a Half Pieces of PDR’s Reviewing System Cake. The only quotable thing about it is the thing it is quoting.