(This is a copy of an email message I sent to the OKC Parks and Rec offices. It is in reference to the tragic accident noted in previous posts on this blog. There are minor differences in content based on administrative trivia.)
I am fully aware that this message will be propagated among various offices and city agencies. As far as I’m concerned, it’s public anyway. Further, I know that it is unlikely anyone will respond substantively until somewhere down the line in this process. I’m seeking a clear conscience with my God and will let Him take charge of the consequences.
Further, I am fully cognizant of how bureaucracies work. I spent several years in the US Army Military Police, mostly as a back-office guy, and sometimes in PR. With that experience, I’ve spent several decades learning to understand social psychology, organizational theory, and I can give lectures on what to expect from the bureaucratic hive-mind (I refer to Glennon’s National Security and Double Government as a good source on how I view such things). I know that the system can’t wait to see what I’ll do because it has no idea how to define me, except to suspect that I am a some kind of threat.
We are not enemies. I am a client of Parks and Rec services; I firmly support the job you folks have done with the bike trails. Anyone can rant about how it’s less than their personal nirvana, but I’m too cynical to expect that much. So I’m pleased and quite willing to keep supporting what comes out the program. It’s not bad, all things considered.
Indeed, if you check the blog linked in my signature, you can scroll back, or simply use the search function on the blog using the term “cycling” and you’ll see that I have been quite some years cycling around the county and taking lots of pictures to show all my friends (~800 subscribers) the lovely country side and things to see, from Draper Lake to Arcadia, to Overholser and Hefner, and beyond. I have good reason to believe I’ll get back to that mission in about six weeks or so. Any of you could join me, if you like.
Yes, dozens of folks have pressured me to get a lawyer, but they are not me. This is my life to direct. I am not a materialistic man, but I do use material stuff to get my otherworldly mission done. My boasting of OKC’s beauty is a part of that mission, though I would be hard put to explain it without referring to my religion. Take my word for it — we are not enemies. I just need restoration of certain material goods that other folks paid for; the bike was bought with a donation from my blog readers. In a moral sense, you owe them, not me. But I’m the legal focus so I’ll make it easy. Hiring a lawyer is more like a last resort (OSHA violations and all that stuff).
I have no experience with filing claims and your lawyers are likely hoping to take advantage of that. But for the other folks who are not totally absorbed into the bureaucracy, let me point out two things that occupy my attention right now.
1. EMSA — I don’t want to hear from them about paying for ambulance services.
2. The bike — the vendor is repairing it now. I want the City to pay for it.
Two other things: The VA has my medical needs covered. However much physical function I’m going to recover, they will get the job done working with me. They’ve never billed me because I’m 50% service-connected disabled. With that rating, I have long since retired from work, so I’m not suffering lost wages. My paycheck will be the same as long as the banking system can pretend that the US federal government is solvent. So those two common issues are not your problem, so far as I can tell. And while there may be a bunch of other tort liability issues, my life is too simple to make much of them.
I’ve shown you my cards. I’m waiting for some really smart official to realize that this tragedy can be turned into an advantage for the City. I’m still interested in working with you, and it seems events beyond my control have made it necessary that I decide now is the time tell you that I have been interested in gathering more accurate information about the stuff I write. Instead of speculation, how about someone get with me and give me a better picture of what Parks and Rec are doing in OKC?
(I’m posting this on my blog as an open letter to the City as a whole. Again, the link is below in my signature block.)