Follow my lead: This is a good place to vent |

Follow my lead: This is a good place to vent

Before we get to the opinion page housekeeping stuff, allow me to vent (which, by the way, you are invited to do here on whatever irks you.)

We’re all aware of the tragic case of road rage last year that ended up with one man dead and a young man staring at 15 years to life in prison. Well, along the same stretch of Highway 89 south Saturday, I experienced first-hand the same kind of idiocy, albeit it didn’t end in an altercation.

I was following my neighbor to Cabin Creek Road when just before the Mousehole in Truckee, a guy in a white Toyota pickup raced past me in order to get through the narrow passage first. It wasn’t the first time that has happened, so I didn’t sweat it.

But then the guy got on the bumper of my buddy, who had his baby in his truck and was doing the clearly posted 55 mph speed limit.

As my neighbor and his infant daughter were heading down the highway, Mr. Idiot was waving his arm out the window and riding their bumper ” as if that would help. When this driver realized his moronic gestures weren’t going to cause my friend to drive any faster he tried to make a pass over a double yellow line (granted, he added a nice legal touch by flipping on his turn signal), but thought better of it ” surprisingly ” when he saw oncoming traffic.

The guy finally passed after my friend yielded on the shoulder, but not until he was able to give idiot driver a one-finger salute.

It’s easy to see how such encounters ratchet up to violence. But this is Tahoe, not some six-lane concrete jungle. We think of road rage as something that occurs on the gridlocked highways and interstates of Southern California or the Bay Area, but as the Tahoe City road rage murder of Robert Ash showed us, anything is possible here in our supposedly more mellow corner of the state.

I have no idea if the guy in the white Toyota pickup with the camper shell and lumber rack is a local, but I hope he had a dire emergency to attend to on the North Shore. He’s exactly the type of guy many of us were trying to avoid by choosing to live in the mountains.

Speaking of avoiding traffic and bad drivers, it won’t be long before the busy holiday weekends flood our roads with tourists who aren’t familiar with the region. Just remember to take a deep breath and know that they’ll be gone soon enough ” and you’ll get your piece of paradise back.

OK, enough of my soap boxing. Now it’s time to get down to business. You are all aware that the Sierra Sun is now daily and will cover Truckee and the North Shore of Lake Tahoe. For the Tahoe folks, that means a new forum to voice opinions.

We here at the Sierra Sun want those voices in the community’s newspaper. We want to hear from our new readers and to continue to hear from our longtime readers. And it doesn’t just have to be about Truckee or the North Shore (although that would be great).

We want readers, experts and advocates to stand up on that figurative soap box and tell the community what they think in a letter or, better yet, a “My Turn” guest column.

A “My Turn” piece is something more than a letter to the editor. It can shed light on an issue or ponder the pedestrian. Whatever the topic, however, the column should fall between 500 and 750 words.

And like letters to the editor, which have a 350-word limit, “My Turn” columns should not be platforms to launch personal attacks or address other letter or column-writers by name, unless they reference a public office holder or someone who has placed his or her self in the public eye. We insist on those guidelines to ensure healthy discussion and debate on issues ” not on people.

As with letters to the editor, we reserve the right to edit all “My Turn” submissions. Columns that don’t follow these guidelines or include potentially libelous language will be rejected.

OK, now that we’ve gotten all the harsh ground rules taken care of, I ask all potential “My Turn” writers to include a short paragraph about themselves. And while not required, we invite writers to stop by either our Tahoe City or Truckee office so we can take a picture to run with the column (or attach a photo with the submission).

Please send your submissions to or post them through our Web site, We do want to hear from you.

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