« WAGBRAD I in the bag (and CAM is done?) | Main | Bike Boom goes international »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

>how can you not notice you've lost all of your left vision and that you should not be driving?

Actually, this is extremely common with all sorts of aphasias. You're experiencing it yourself even as you read this: everybody has a blind spot where the optic nerve leaves the eye. You can prove it by following the directions here.

The situations are not perfectly analogous, of course, but hopefully this serves to illustrate the broader medical point. The human mind is just not very good at noticing a lack of sensory input. The most striking example of this may be the condition called prosopagnosia, in which the sufferer is completely, provably blind -- but swears they are not.

D'oh -- link got stripped out. If you google for "blind spot demonstration" you should be able to turn up something similar, though.


How does it make you feel that he states toward the end of his piece that he doesn't give a crap about what you think?

The man is facing a death sentence. He writes a piece that is his way to explain to his reader's his situation and you take him to task for not being sorry enough for something he cannot remember?

I think you need to ease up on him. This accident was a "one-off" not a vast right wing conspiracy.

Other Tom, I took him to mean people who took delight in his illness. I am not among them if such people exist.
I will accept that it's possible his vision went without him noticing and will give him the benefit of the doubt.
I'm willing to accept that he hit Don due to a tumor. That he did not "run" because he did not know he hit someone. I empathize with his lot and hope he beats the odds. Maybe he has nothing to feel sorry about. But I'd feel a lot more compassion for him if he felt a little for Don.
I was never going to bring this up again, but then he decided to. He could have walked away, but he didn't and so I'm not going to ease up on the guy.

Has Mr. Novak voluntarily turned in his drivers license?

And now that I'm rereading it again. The only explanation for Novak not seeing the pedestrian was that he's half blind due to a tumor. Something neither Novak nor the police officer knew at the time, so why did the police officer believe Mr. Novak's account? It sounds like the police officer was right for the wrong reason, lucky for Mr. Novak indeed.

Also, we really need a word - other than serendipitous, which isn't quite the same - for "right for the wrong reason." I'm sure the Germans have one.

You wrote "I hope the Post will allow Mr. Bono a chance to tell his side of the story." But the piece you quote also includes the following: "After I said I had no idea I had hit anyone until they flagged me down and informed me, Mr. Bono told The Washington Post, "I would not believe that." " In other words, Bono already told his side of the story, and this is Novak telling his side.

Christopher, I referring specifically to the "mob" part. That term has a negative connotation.

My reaction was very similar. He's dying the way he lived his life -- self-serving to the end.

I find it interesting his need to insert 2 peripheral facts into the article. The first being the occupation of the person who stopped him was that of "a partner in the high-end law firm ...". Might he be trying to conjure the image of a left wing radical ambulance chaser?

The second is more troubling. Why is it necessary to describe the victim as "with no fixed address"? We don't learn where the lawyer or police office live or don't live. Is he perhaps trying to build a rationalization for himself and readers that the victim was homeless, therefore likely drunk, and perhaps stumbled into Novak's car?

The Human Events version of the story has an important detail omitted from the Post version:
"Following Officer Garcia's instructions, I promptly paid the $50 fine at Third District Police Headquarters in Northwest Washington, in cash and in person."

Why is this interesting? Once the ticket is paid, double jeopardy attaches and it is no longer possible to charge Novak with any other offence related to the accident. He's off the hook for felony hit and run. However, until the ticket is paid, it can be dismissed and a more serious charge brought in its place. If he had seen a lawyer, I'm sure the first advice he would have gotten would have been to run, don't walk, down to the police station, and pay the ticket. In person. In cash.

Now, the wording is a little imprecise, but it appears that the officer was giving him exactly that advice.

If that's the case, that's a serious breach of ethics on the part of the officer.


While Novak doesn't appear to have turned in his license, he writes:

"But Joe and Valerie Wilson, attempting to breathe life into the Valerie Plame "scandal," issued this statement: "We have long argued that responsible adults should take Novak's typewriter away. The time has arrived for them to also take away the keys to his Corvette."

Thanks to my tumor, the Wilsons have achieved half of their desires. I probably never will be able to drive again, and I have sold the Corvette, which I dearly loved. Taking away my typewriter, however, may require modification of the First Amendment."


I think you are over-interpreting his actions. By paying the fine, he is not insulating himself from further legal action. He could still be charged with any number of violations, plus the victim might start a civil action against him. My guess is that Novak is simply trying to show that he's not a scofflaw.


By referring to Bono as a partner in a high-end law firm, Novak is implying the exact opposite of what you suggest. Ambulance chasers don't work for high-end law firms. They're at the opposite end of the spectrum.


In real world yes but who's to say what it means in bizarro Novak terms? Perhaps a more apt allusion would have been personal injury attorney and member of the Trial Lawyers Association. Some of those guys even run for President!

My point is that a wordsmith like Novak skilled at conveying multiple meanings within the confines of just a few hundred words doesn't throw in extraneous details like "high-end" or "no fixed address" because he's used to being paid by the word. No, those words are there for a purpose and for an audience. Maybe not for you or me but they are "code" to some.

Please. This column just confirms that the man is a net negative to society. Even assuming that the tumor caused him not to see the man he hit, he's still the same ass that he's always been in describing it.

I think that we're far too generous in forgiving someone for their lifetime's worth of transgressions simply because they're old. Screw Bob Novak. Because he's sure been screwing us his whole life.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Banner design by creativecouchdesigns.com

City Paper's Best Local Bike Blog 2009


 Subscribe in a reader