In this reality TV era, it seems many are so trained to go after the mundane, burning a lot of mental capital on things that ultimately have no value to make our lives in the community, state, or country any better. My old QLS racquetball partner and friend, Jennifer wrote a Facebook post that kinda shocked me.
Kingwood resident photographed her riding kids to school
So I'm racing across Kingwood on the bicycle, pulling Mike behind me in the bicycle trailer and heading to get Connor at his school... and a cop pulls up beside me at a stop light and tells me that people are complaining ABOUT ME on social media, riding my bike between the schools each day on the road, but then he says he was going to pipe in on it and tell them I had the right-of-way being a cyclist...I just laughed. Watch me give a flying * about negative comments on social media, bahahaa!
Someone created the post on the Kingwood.com forums titled "Please be careful with this person in Bear Branch." As of the date of this post, it has received over 3,638 views. My initial scan seems to show that most of the Kingwood residents were attacking Jennifer for all kinds of reasons. It was amazing how much they assumed or believe they had the right to infer. It is the same behavior that has made our politics so caustic. While I don't chime into these types of petty issues, I really wanted to just put one supporting voice in the thread for my friend.
I am so amazed that a woman riding a bike to take her kids to school in a neighborhood with controlled speeds during school hours can cause this much angst. BTW, I know this woman and she is one of the most attentive and responsible parents bar none.
If I still had elementary school-aged kids, I may have tried what she is doing. I am pretty sure the kids appreciate the bonding time and experience. And other kids watching just may appreciate if their parents who are able would do so as well. And on the positive, she is teaching her kids that one can get around with more than a gasoline/diesel powered metal box.
Keep up the good job biking mom.
A 21-year Kingwood resident who continues to get shocked from some of my neighbor's continually.
But, the take-no-prisoners Jennifer who hustled in racquetball or any of the other sports she decided to take over gave a response I knew was in the making and well deserving to the self-righteous souls attacking her.
Jennifer strikes back
New addition to my bike. I guess I'm feeling a little confrontational right now. I just posted this photo and this remark at the end of the thread:
"OK, since I am now famous on here, and throughout Kingwood I guess- I will leave you with this, because, frankly, I have a life, a business, and no time or patience for this childish, inane nonsense (even though I have enjoyed many chuckles from the remarks).
My name is Jennifer; you all know what I look like and where I am, obviously.
- If you are law enforcement and see me doing something illegal, by all means, stop me (just as the officer did yesterday at the stop light on WLHP- but only to tell me that I was in the right, and let me know about this crazy post).
- If I have buzzed you on my bike because you are in the middle of the path, have earbuds in, are on your phone, taking up the whole path with your dogs, a team of runners, or a cluster of people- pay attention to the very distinguishable bicycle bell that I RING.
- If you have been sitting in the pickup line for 45 minutes prior to school letting out, and you see me whiz by you at 5 minutes till and leave at 1 minute after- STFU, you are just jealous.
- Yea, I grew up in the 70's, in the country, not wearing helmets or seat belts, so no, I'm not a fragile-minded or fragile-bodied millennial that is ever going to wear a helmet- if you get off your phones in a school zone (which is a $200 fine), you would see me and my very legal bike trailer, and I wouldn't need to wear one out of fear that a careless driver will hit me.
- I am a 23-year resident of Kingwood, drive a Cadillac, and own my home outright- this isn't because of finances...it is freedom of choice.
- NOW, if any of you have a set of these, get out from behind the anonymity of your little computer and approach me with any VALID points. (You won't change my mind with your personal beliefs and I won't try to change yours- what you do is your own business.
- If you choose to make threats of hitting me or my child, or want to start something, be advised-not only could I probably bench press you, but I have an LTC, and my son's father is a Sheriff's Deputy- bring it...
- If you are some of the cool cats on here that support me, feel free to give me a "rock-on" fist up as I pass...if you're not, feel free to flip me the bird... at least you have a set of balls!
Now, go find some politics or religion to argue about.
Look, folks, Jennifer is right. If there is something she was doing "really" wrong that somehow needed addressing, I am sure she would always have been ready to take the advice. But the way folks came at her is counterproductive. Moreover, even the police officer corroborated that she never placed her kids in danger. And yes while so many complain about helmets and other issues that in her situation was her choice, I find it ironic we do not get these complaints on everyday issues that affect your children here in Kingwood and throughout the country.
We tend to have tunnel vision and unable to see the big picture on issue after issue. Do you want discussions? Watch your school board and just like many on the chain researched whether Jennifer was breaking the law and posted laws in the thread, do the same as you watch our local school board to ensure the best interest of your kids are really being addressed. Remember, to many they are just the raw material for the income of a few companies salivating to profit from skimming a few dollars that could ultimately affect their education going forward permanently. Get out of the comfort of your echo chamber and explore.
Also published on Medium.