Friday, May 22, 2009

Friday Reactions

It can be said that our actions are really reactions, to circumstances, situations and people. Here are a handful of reactions noticed in the margins of the news on a brisk Friday morning.

Integrity: Last Friday we blogged about a poor single mom's reaction when she discovered that her banks' clerical error made her rich. She admitted to the temptation to steal the money but nevertheless contacted the bank about their mistake and returned the full amount.
Today, a different reaction to similar circumstances in New Zealand, where a bank error added extra zeroes to a line of credit, turning a gas station owner into an instant millionaire.
His response: take the money and run.

A businessman and his girlfriend, whose bank accidentally handed them a $6.1 million credit line, have managed to flee the country with more than a third of the cash, the bank said Friday.
An international search is under way for the couple, who are believed to have gone on the run, possibly to Hong Kong or China, to avoid having to give the money back.
Heroism: In Nebraska, a remarkable six-year old son is sitting in the back seat next to his 3-year old brother when he suddenly notices his dad had fainted while he was driving them. Realizing the danger, he leaps into the front seat in order to safely take over the wheel of their family car:

Police say a 6-year-old boy grabbed the wheel of their pickup after his dad passed out from low blood sugar and kept them from crashing until a North Platte police officer could bring the truck to a halt.
Tustin [Mains] hopped up from the back seat to his father’s lap so he could steer and see out the windshield.
His dad’s foot had slipped off the accelerator, but even at idle the Chevrolet Avalanche was going an estimated 10-15 mph.
Tustin remained at the wheel for several blocks, even turning around when he got into a neighborhood he didn’t recognize.
The young son was not the only one with quick-thinking initiative on the scene...:

Other drivers noticed the boy driving the truck. Some maneuvered their vehicles in front or behind the pickup and turned on their emergency blinkers.
When officer Roger Freeze noticed the child behind the wheel, he quickly sprang into action as well, managing to catch up to the truck on foot without getting run over, reaching in through the window and stopping the vehicle by grabbing the gearshift. Later, the father expressed his gratitude:

“To chase down a moving vehicle and get it stopped the way he did took a lot of nerve, and if it weren’t for him, things could have turned out much worse.”

Battle: Headline of the day: "Hero cruise ship Britons fight off armed Somali pirates with deckchairs and tables".
British pensioners on a cruise ship bravely fought off machine gun-armed Somali pirates by hurling deckchairs and tables at them.
The holidaymakers were enjoying a midnight Mozart concert onboard MSC Melody when pirates armed with Kalashnikovs attempted to board it using grappling hooks and ladders.
But passengers forced them back to their boats by throwing chairs and tables over the stern of the ship as Israeli security guards onboard the cruise liner fired warning shots.


truepeers said...

Man, New Zealand may be a socialist paradise, but, quite aside from the moral question, forever running around the world in order to hold on to a (dwindling) couple of million...?

Dag said...

I'm struck by a boatload of geezers pumped at a Mozart concert, head-bangers high on Geritol, tossing deck chairs at sea-borne jihadis, in time to the Jupiter Symphony. Heavy metal grannies, born to be wild.

Charles Henry said...

Today's Somali pirates story seems a perfect, multi-layered metaphor for modern times:

It's the older generation that remains more committed to defending the West's cultural traditions;

The world looks to Isrealis as the people who know how to get the dirty work done;

We all postpone solving problems through endless "warning shots", instead of actually doing something that solves the problem.

regarding the take-the-money-and-run New Zealand story... it reminds me of Uncle Remus' sage advice:
"You can't run from your trouble, because there isn't any place that far away to run to"...