Friday, 12 November 2010

Drenched Hiram B Birdbath Takes Consolation In Dayglo

I'm the subject of a complaint from our new driver - Hiram B Birdbath.

One morning last week, it was exceptionally wet and hard to see much. The early morning service I was driving was ploughing through the puddles. I did not take much notice of the motorbike coming past me on the other side of the road and continued ploughing through the puddles, and regretfully through one particularly deep patch of water, just as Hiram was level with the bus. The result was that he took a drenching and was not too pleased when he reached the depot.

I thought he was avoiding me for the past few days. Now I know why. On the plus side, it is gratifying to know it was not so much because I smell.

One of my relatives used to tell tales when I was a child of splashing pedestrians with his car. He would tell them with relish, which I now realise verged on the sadistic. One which sticks in the mind is of the hitchhiker who was sheltering under a tree on a bank, just above a roadside puddle. He indicated as if he was stopping to offer a lift, the hitchhiker walked away from his shelter to the kerb, at which time my relative accelerated through the puddle and soaked the man.

He has had to tone down his behaviour these days. The law takes a dim view of splashing people and there are some large fines around. Hiram seems to have tried a new offensive against bus drivers like me. He has invested in a very bright dayglo fluorescent jacket in the hope that we will see him better.

As Voltaire said: "Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd."

Good luck, Hiram.

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