As something of a follow-up to the comments below, I note what may be the most..interesting..designation of “hero” to have been made- so far- this year. I don’t remember the particulars- where, who, and specifically when- nor will I spend even 30 seconds retrieving that info; it is irrelevant! If you had the TV on during the last few days, you’ve probably heard the story anyway and I do you no service by re-heaping the details onto your already creaking-with-overload memory.
A pizza was delivered to a home way outside of town, in some state, near some medium-sized town. While inside, the deliveryman saw a woman with her hands tied who was mouthing the words “Call 911.” Now, I’m not going to quibble about the likelihood of understanding someone’s mimed plea to call 911; try it, you’ll see the words are not easily seen. And, it would seem to me that the tied up hands and wrists would probably be a sign, adequate unto itself, that something was amiss.
All of this non-verbal information was being passed, by the way, while the client had his back turned to the deliveryman and his victim, WHILE HE WAS SIGNING THE CREDIT CARD SLIP for the pizza! One must ask, if you’re going to be a kidnapper, and if you’re going to feed the victim, wouldn’t it be a good idea to meet the delivery guy outside the house, with cash? That’s not relevant, really, except that it goes to show why the status of “hero” is deserved even less than it may have been deemed to be deserved at first glance. Stick around, it gets even less deserving.
The pizza guy left the house, got in his car, and called 911. That’s no big deal; if you’ve done it, you know what I mean. I’ve called 911 twice; the first time was the day after 9-11-01, 9-12-01, if I must spell it out. It was evening and I was sitting in the backyard. I was home alone when a transformer on the telephone pole behind my house exploded. Being 9-12-01, it crossed my mind- I’ll admit- that the 9100 block of Clemson Drive in Garland, Texas was under attack. The second time I called was when I was trying to help a man stand up who was trying to faint. He wanted to sit down, but we were outside and all I could aim him toward was a riding lawn mower. He had a bowel movement before he was seated and while I was trying to tell the operator the address. As difficult as the circumstances were in both cases, the dialing of the numbers, the placing of the call, was easy.
The pizza guy had none of those extenuating circumstances. He simply called 911. And then he waited for the police to arrive so he could provide- his words- “back-up” ! What, one must ask, might the back-up have been which he could have provided? Good intentions aside- and I’m sure they were good- but what could he have done? What might have been needed to be done? Face it, I say..the guy hung around- as I would, as you would- to see what was going to happen. In fact, the police would have had to forcibly remove me from the scene for me to have left such a scene of interesting potential! (When I was in college, I delivered pizza for a year; not much that is exciting happens while delivering pizza. An event like this would have been regarded by most of us drivers at the time as a gift from an almighty and loving God.)
The woman was rescued- hallelujah!- from the cashless kidnapper. He will probably be able to kick himself in prison for quite a few years for not stopping at an ATM machine on the way home from his criminal activity. Adding further insult to injury, I’m guessing his story will take on mythical dimensions of stupidity and ineptitude after a few years of being embellished by various cell mates. I refuse to imagine anything else that may befall him beyond this point.
But I continue to wonder about the pizza delivery guy, as I wonder about all persons like him who seem to hang around long enough to talk to a news reporter. What would he have said to enquiring minds who need to know? “Well, I held the phone firmly with my left hand, and dialed with the second finger of my right hand because I had previously injured my first finger- the one I would normally dial with.” I’m not- no way, no how- demeaning what this guy did; I’m just saying, who wouldn’t have done the same thing? A person is in trouble- it’s easy to make a contribution toward the solution; do it.
Hero? Again, the guy who falls on a grenade is a hero. The woman who runs into a burning house to save children or pets is a hero. The employee who blows the whistle on a criminal employer, and risks their job to do so, is a hero. Calling 911 is not heroic. It is practical. It is the proper thing to do.
OK. I’m not only sliding this soapbox back out of the way, I’m taking an ax to it. You might want to hang around in case the ax head flies off. You can call 911, and tell whoever asks, about what might have happened. Shoot, some would say you’re already a hero since you’re willing to take on such a job. In fact, you ARE a hero! You are!
You are. Really. You and the pizza guy.