Did I Jinx That Guy?

Traffic cones set up to direct traffic around a police car.

Have you ever jinxed someone, but didn’t know it?

A few weeks ago I was at a red light right after leaving the police department parking lot. While I was stopped, a guy rode by me on a bicycle who was pulling a shopping cart. That was something I hadn’t seen before. Lately, I’ve been seeing bicyclist pulling suitcases, but not shopping carts.

I thought to myself how I’ve never taken a crash with a guy on a bike who was pulling a shopping cart before. It was a quick thought that I forgot as soon as I said it.

About 7 hours later I was sent to an injury collision involving a bicycle and a vehicle on the west side of the city. When I got there, the officers told me the fire department had already come and gone after the injured rider refused aid. There was a witness standing by, so I spoke to her first.

The witness told me where she was standing when she saw the crash. She described how he was riding the wrong way on the street and how he crossed directly in front of the vehicle when the collision occurred.

She said, “He was pulling a shopping cart.”

Of course, that made the call more interesting now. “He was? Where’s the cart?”

“Yeah, it’s still in the street,” she said as she pointed.

I looked and sure enough, there was a shopping cart that was knocked over in the street. The bicycle was damaged beyond repair and was lying next to the cart.

I had jinxed the guy for sure.

I then spoke to the bicyclist and asked him what happened. He gave me a slightly different version of how the collision occurred, but it was close enough. I looked at the rear wheel of the bicycle and saw that it was bent and twisted from the collision. It was more a paper weight than a bicycle now.

After I was done with the investigation, the rider asked, “What do I do with my bike?”

“Do you want to put it in the shopping cart?” I asked.

By the look on his face, it wasn’t the answer he was looking for. With a bit of a pout he walked over to the cart and picked it up. He then lifted the bicycle into the air and half threw it into the shopping cart with a frustrated look on his face. The bike landed hard in the cart and caused it to tip over with a loud crash that echoed in the night.

It was actually pretty funny to watch.

The rider stood there in the street with a defeated look on his face as his shoulders sagged. He then pulled the bicycle out and got the shopping cart back up on its wheels again.

Now it was time to watch operation bicycle in a shopping cart 2.0.

He lifted the bicycle up in the air and put it in the cart with more care this time. He picked up the rest of his belongings and was able to push the cart out of the street. The cart looked funny with half of the bike sticking up in the air like it was doing a wheelie.

It just proves that you can’t make this stuff up.