Stories from my Past: The accident that almost was

Driving is dangerous and so is being a pedestrian. Once I was turning right and the road I was turning onto was obstructed by a building, and it was a very sharp turn so my visibility was limited. As soon as I turned the almost 360 degree right, I saw a mother and her two children crossing the road while traffic was moving. I was going slow enough to stop, and avoided the accident but it was a scary moment for all of us. The mother grabbed her kids and returned to the curb, but I was shaken and bothered by what almost happened.

When I had a chance I called the city that it occurred in and spoke to their Public Works department. Since it happened on a state route, I was directed to talk to the state. I called the state and was directed to talk to a specific engineer. That engineer was apparently busy but I called everyday for 3 weeks until I got a hold of him. Once I explained the situation he recognized the problems and agreed that it was a concern and that part of his team was working on redesigning it. The corner was made even more dangerous by illegal double parking that was done from the local citizens, so he suggested I speak to the police as well. I called the police and informed them that they needed better patrols in that area and they said they were patrolling the area but I may not have seen that.

The point of me sharing this with you is to point out that sometimes we can have tragic situations happen because no one did enough to fix the issue previously. Now even if something happens in that corner, I know that I have done everything I could do to address the issue. It is painful sometimes to follow-up and make sure that things get taken care of. It is painful to have to spend time dealing with “other people’s problems”. I got no reward from the many hours I spend dealing with this situation other than the fact that my actions perhaps might prevent a tragedy that I almost experienced.

I have said it before and I really believe it, that we have opportunities everyday to make the world a better place. Sometimes they are not easy and sometimes they are. Do not let your decisions be based on an inconvenience to you, when it could mean a life to someone else.

Did you get the LinkedIn spam about Strikingly?

I have received three exact emails from LinkedIn contacts about Strikingly in the last 24 hours. The message says this exactly with each message:


I think you’ll like this useful tool I just found. It’s called Strikingly – it generates a beautiful personal website for you using your LinkedIn information. It takes only 5 seconds, and is free. I just got mine, and it’s super cool:

If you have a min, you should definitely try it:

Let me know how you like it.

It is one thing to send a personal message to me based on something that I might enjoy, but these emails always are sent to a larger number of other users who are usually Lions (big LinkedIn net workers) themselves. It seems clear that this is a form message that is being sent by Strikingly. The first time I received this message I clicked on the subject and looked at the result webpage. It was ok. Nothing fantastic or couldn’t be done better with a little effort. In fact it would be perceived as a negative by an employer since the individual didn’t have to work to understand anything, just click on something to create it.

So in the past I have not marked things as spam because I didn’t want to hurt people who might be new to LinkedIn or not understand its social rules. I think that when it clearly is advertising and self-promotion that it crosses the line from being a resource to being a nuisance. What do you think?