By GORDON GLANTZ
GORDONVILLE — Often to my wife’s chagrin, Sofia and I are so much alike that is frightening.
If you ever wondered what the saying of two peas in a pod means, just observe us in our national habitat for a while.
But there is one area where we clearly differ.
I pride myself on being not only on time, but at least 15 minutes early.
And with the ongoing PennDOT conspiracy to road work in my path, I like to leave even extra travel time to get to where I need to be.
If we’re early, we’ll deal with it.
We can always sit in the car and chill with some tunes, until we don’t look too early, right?
I never want to hear the words “it’s about time” when I – or we – are late for wherever we need to be.
That vibe carries into the outside world, where I find myself saying “it’s about time” when enough red tape is cut for logical decisions to be made.
Today, I bring you some examples:
-Ana’s Corner Store, at Township Line and North Wales roads in East Norriton, was held hostage by road work for what seemed like a biblical 40 years. While I like to stop there on my way to make musical magic at Morningstar Studios, I have been avoiding it like the 11th plague that the scenario was. I feared for the survival of the privately owned business but, lo and behold, it has outlasted the road crews.
Instead of amen, let us bow our heads and say, “it’s about time.”
-Speaking of PennDOT –which has twice damaged my car with new road paint, but I digress — it announced that multiple police departments in Eastern Pennsylvania are launching a special aggressive driving enforcement campaign. It will last through the end of August.
Among the participating departments are Norristown, West Norriton, Upper Merion and Plymouth. They will be focusing on a host of aggressive driving behaviors (running red lights, tailgating, speeding, distracted driving, etc.)
I kind of sort of thought this was their job to begin with, and I also wonder what happens after August, when the initiative concludes (17 fatalities in Philadelphia’s five surrounding counties were the direct result of aggressive driving in 2017).
While my own temper is my own worst enemy, I have successfully tamed the beast within as I have mellowed with middle age. Still, nothing like a schmuck thinking the road belongs to him (and it’s usually a him, not a her) to get me angry.
It will be nice to know police will be out to curb this stupidity, which will protect me from myself as well.
Again, instead of amen, let us bow our heads and say “it’s about time.”
-Finally, we no longer have to hear about those a bit longer in the tooth than we are walking to school – 18 ½ miles, each way, in two feet of snow – and mocking us for calling off school before one flake hits the ground.
I guess it does seem a bit foolish, and there have been times when it has backfired, but it is better to be safe than sorry – especially with all those aggressive drivers out there who don’t respect the conditions.
As a kid, I loved snow days. The options were endless. Sledding, shoveling for do-re-mi, playing tackle football or – as it was often with me – sleeping in and then watching movies.
As the parent primarily responsible for Sofia’s transportation, I had quite a different view. There were a few times when the school attempted to stay open during a bad snow storm, and I had to pick up Sofia amid worsening conditions on a day when the school should have planned ahead.
It’s always a tough call, as school districts want to get in at least a half-day so that there won’t be makeups at the end of the year.
But extra buses on the road, with road crews trying to do their thing, make for an added mess.
Why mess with a messy situation?
Tom Wolf signed a bill (Senate Bill 440) this week that will allow the option for “cyber snow days.”
Translation: With computers, which have been around since Al Gore invented them, stay home and do your schoolwork – and still have a chance to be a kid in the snow.
“School districts need the added flexibility of ensuring their students’ continuity of education is not interrupted by the weather or any other unplanned school closure,” said State Sen. Kristen Phillips-Hill said in a statement.
Phillips-Hill, of York, was the sponsor of the bill that is open to all schools, public and private, for approved periods of three years.
To Phillips-Hill, we stand and applaud and say, “it about time.”
The following column ran in The Times Herald on July 15.