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Dave the killer…

I’ve often promulgated myself as some sort of holier-than-thou path-side environmentalist. I’ve yammered on and on about removing trash which, in theory, might find a way to waterways and into the gullets of unsuspecting and innocent creatures.

This morning I’ve been knocked off my self-created pedestal.

A lovely Eastern Box turtle. I could have done something to save one, but instead did nothing to help. (Image from Western Carolina State University.)

While driving last night, I came across an Eastern Box turtle square in the middle of the road, its neck craned outward and upward in alarm as if to say ‘What the hell is that big thing coming toward me?’ I could see I would miss the large, beautiful and slow moving beast. I quickly scanned my rearview mirror. Cars were several hundred yards behind me; I’d have time to stop, put on my flashers, and pick up the turtle to accelerate its movement to the other side of the street.

But no. In my self-important haste I decided against it. Instead, I thought, I’ll check in on her/him on the return leg.

My errand done, I retraced my route to the very spot where the turtle was simply trying to move from Point A to Point B. I slowed to a near stop to survey if the creature had made it across safely.

To my undying horror, it had not. The spot was now a murder scene. The lovely turtle I could have saved had been run over, it’s shell exploded and the contents crushed over a small area. In that moment, a great sadness came over me.

I was the de facto killer, perhaps even moreso than the driver of the vehicle who actually committed the deed. All my posturing as a protector of animals was now muted and lessened. If only I’d stopped to gently lift the turtle on its merry way.

Instead, I became Dave the killer.

About Dave Bradley (264 Articles)
I'm the one behind two totally unrelated blogs; the first on 17 years of writing weekly letters to my kids (plus other recipients), the other on my localized environmental responsibility ( I'm a writer by trade and both endeavors are accepted practice for me. As for the letters, my adult children Ellen and Reid may have seen these single pagers as corny at one point, but it's accepted practice for them, too, to find something in their mailbox other than bills and junk mail. Email and texting don't do a lot for me for a lot of different reasons. Snail mail has its place in the communicative world and so as long as they keep selling stamps, I'm buying. As for and the environment, I advocate what citizens can do themselves to take a direct hand in their neighborhood environment. But Pick Up Your Path is also a general environmental blog. It may be largely about litter and trash, but both of those are just one element of the total environmental picture.

2 Comments on Dave the killer…

  1. Hello there! This post couldn’t be written any better!
    Going through this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He continually kept talking about this. I most certainly will
    forward this information to him. Fairly certain he’s going to have a great read.
    I appreciate you for sharing!

    • Well, thank you much. I go by the ‘scene of the crime’ with some frequency…and just wish I had stopped when I had the chance. I really appreciate that you read that post.

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