Drunk on truth to stupid baby power.

The Luckiest People in the World

This piece originally appeared on The Cowbird:


The first time I ride my bike across the Golden Gate Bridge, it’s sunny. And not just sunny, but warm, too. I’m with my friend Lizzy and at one point while we’re gliding over the sidewalk, one of us shouts to the other: “We’re the luckiest people in the world!” Then for about a half a minute we both just keep chanting that – “We’re the luckiest people in the world!” – each with one hand on the handlebars and a fist pumping in the air.

We make our way across the bridge, sometimes getting caught behind packs of slow-moving cruisers and sometimes darting out and around them. At one point, a man coming in the opposite direction yells “Get over!” at me as he speeds toward me in his little cyclist leotard.

His aggression reminds me of a woman I saw earlier, as we were rounding a tight corner to get up on the bridge. The woman screamed at a little boy standing in the middle of the bike path with a camera. “It’s just the worse place to stand!” she yelled, part to the boy and part to everyone else. The way she looked around for affirmation made me feel dirty and I avoided eye contact.

I mean, I get it. Nobody wants to crash into anyone or anything, ever. That’s kind of what keeps cities running – this mutual understanding that we’d all rather not collide into one another. We veer over street lines, double park, hop down from sidewalks to walk in the street – all with a shared trust that everyone else is going to shift to accommodate us. It’s when this trust is broken, that people lose their sense of how to behave.

At the end of the bridge, Lizzy and I descend into Sausalito and press on to Tiburon. In Tiburon, we take a seat on the patio of the Mexican restaurant right by the water. We order margaritas and ceviche. We take effortless photos of nothing in particular and watch them turn out beautifully. “We’re the luckiest people in the world,” one of us says again.

I don’t notice the ambulance that’s parked on the street outside the restaurant until we’re getting up from the table after settling our tab. When I do see it, all I think is: “Sometimes ambulances just have to park somewhere, right?” and move on to grab my bike.

Lizzy and I get in line for the ferry and I pull a beer out of my bag and we pass it back and forth as we chat with the couple in front of us. We watch the giant boat floating in to take us home.

When ferry pulls in, it spits out passengers and starts taking new ones. But after only about a half of the people waiting to board get on, the boat closes up quickly and pulls away, leaving about a hundred of us behind.

It’s around now that a helicopter swirls in from above and lands in the grass nearby. Soon after, another ambulance arrives with about five or so cop cars behind it. And it’s also around now that we first notice the coast guard boat that’s chugging in from the Bay with a speedboat in tow. The windshield of the speedboat is shattered and the front of it mangled.

Read the rest here.

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