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Good Citizen

I was out for a quick spin around Fremont Older the other day between other commitments. These are usually a fast ride with nothing more to say other than an occasional "Hi" or "Thanks". This time was different when I had a few opportunities to be a good citizen.

The first opportunity was when I was cruising down Seven Springs Loop and came across a young guy that looked a bit out of placed. He was obviously out having a great time on his brand new DiamondBack that didn't have any dust on the rims yet. He asked how to get back to the parking lot. After confirming he wanted to go to the Prospect parking lot, I told him that he could go either way and get. He asked if he could follow me since it was his first time at Fremont Older. I agreed and suggested that he might pick up a map at the trailhead for his next ride so he could explore more confidently. I noted that he was young and enthusiastic but not outfitted like many rider since he was wearing jeans and tennis shoes and no helmet. I pointed out that the rangers are known for giving out expensive tickets for infractions like riding without a helmet or speeding, but there was nothing more to do at that point and we started toward the parking lot.

When we got to the parking lot, he discovered that this was not the parking lot that he had started from and he apparently wanted to go to Regnart Road. While we chatted and he caught his breath, a couple of gals came up to give him a friendly warning about helmet tickets. After their warning, they headed up the trail with my new friend following them. As bad luck would have it, the only ranger to be seen that day came rolling up and called him back over the loudspeaker. The guy came back and tried to explain his situation to the ranger. My second opportunity for good citizenship presented itself. I jumped in and vouched for the guy and got the ranger to relent on issuing a ticket and let him get off with "a stern talking to" before letting him walk his bike back to his car at Regnart.  Apparently, you need to wear your helmet even when pushing your bike (!?), so he got a pass on that too. That done, the ranger focused attention on some people that let their dog poop on the side of the trail and then push it off a bit. She forced them to clean it up with much embarrassment after giving them a hard time on the loudspeaker.

This was supposed to be a short ride and I was on a timer, so I headed home. I was riding along the railroad tracks. Just after I crossed the road I passed a lady letting her dog take a dump. I could tell that she wasn't about to clean it up. I watched until the dog finished and she started to turn away when I reminded her that she forgot to clean up after her dog. After an angry scowl, she got out her plastic bag and cleaned it up while I waited a short distance away. This was my third good deed for the community in less than an hour.

I felt like I had really done my part to make things better. Then came the election and I realized it had all been pointless. Apparently, most of the country thought I should have avoided the guy on the trail or told him it was his bad luck that he didn't know where he was. He should have been locked up for his egregious violations of "the law". And cleaning up dog shit is just government meddling and intrusive laws. I need to get with the "new program" and become a real AmeriKKKan.

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