KALEIDOSCOPE by Berni Steinbach
Put-in-Bay is a cornucopia of friendly residents, beautiful seascapes, welcoming businesses, remarkable history, and a multitude of recreational opportunities. South Bass Island has been known for a long while as a mid-west playground, and even “Key West of the North”; however, every once in a while, rotten fruits spoil the bountiful basket. This appears to be the case in the summer of 2020.
Mrs. Peach and her son Fuzzy ride peacefully along in a golf cart on Langram Road. Suddenly, Mr. Banana and his bunch of friends come roaring out of a side-street completely disregarding traffic. Mrs. Peach swerves to avoid being hit as the Banana Bunch zoom away. Their four-seater golf cart has six people aboard. Two stand on the back step whooping and hollering into the distance.
Mr. Plum has care of his ten-year-old grandson Pit for the day. Not sure how to entertain the boy, he decides to let him drive the family golf cart on several side streets. There isn’t much traffic there, so why not give the kid a thrill. Trouble is, that is illegal. Mr. Plum faces a stiff fine and grandson Pit may not get his driver’s license when he is of age.
Missy Green Grapes and her cluster celebrate Missy’s upcoming marriage. They’ve enjoyed visiting several drinking establishments and decide to race the length of Bayview Avenue while holding down the golf cart horn, screaming, and dodging pedestrians in crosswalks. When admonished, they yell even louder and respond, “We’re partying!”
Joe Lime and the Lemon Brothers rent mopeds for the afternoon so they can visit the outer reaches of South Bass Island. The ride feels sporty and exhilarating, and Joe Lime challenges his buddies to a little competition. Who can make it to the lighthouse the fastest? When taxi and golf cart traffic slows them down, they choose a side road. The competition continues aggressively, so Lemon Brothers decide to zoom across private property as a shortcut. Riding over grass, flower beds, and sprinklers is a blast–until Mr. Lime turns to see Lemon Brothers sliding sideways and down to the ground as the mopeds hit the pavement again.
Leslie Mater returns to her rental golf cart parked on Delaware Avenue. She discovers the golf carts parked in front and behind hers have blocked her in completely. No problem! She puts the gear in reverse and stomps on the accelerator. Crunch! Plastic flies in several directions, but now there is room to pull out. With adrenaline flowing, Miss Mater turns hard to make the escape and runs straight into oncoming traffic. Crash!
Mister Orange wants to see how fast he can accelerate in his flashy sports car. Wow, it moves so fast! Without realizing it, he’s headed straight into a private yard and over a seawall into Lake Erie. Thanks to the rocky shore, the car doesn’t fill with water. Now what?
Put-in-Bay does not deserve to be spoiled by bad actors. Rotten fruit exists everywhere, but the magnitude of its presence on South Bass Island is troubling, to say the least. It is time for residents and visitors alike to remember the island community is not an adventure park where a blatant lack of regard for the danger or consequences of one’s actions can be tolerated.
PLEASE, MIND YOUR MANNERS! DON’T SPOIL THE VERY PLACE WHICH PROVIDES FOR OUR COLLECTIVE WELL-BEING!