To do good in this town is pretty difficult. But people try. They post missing cat sightings on neighborhood message boards. They fill up community meetings on parking issues and debate with passion and a knowledge of the various regs that boggles my mind. Over the weekend, a Barracks Row resident was kind enough to talk my ear off about various parking matters. Best of all he was cool. He even swerved into a biography of the block’s cat. From the looks of the cat, he and his neighbors had made sure he was well fed.

The next day, I tried to play the good samaritan. I witnessed a motorcycle accident on Alabama Avenue SE. The cyclist had tried to make a left turn down a side street. At the same time, a beat-up Taurus wanted to turn from the side street onto Alabama Avenue. The cyclist swerved. The cycle wobbled and then suddenly both driver and two-wheeler hit pavement. Motorbike parts broke off and scattered. I pulled over and called 911.

But by the time I got through to the dispatcher, the cyclist had gotten up and whispered a few cuss words. The Taurus’ driver apologized but didn’t get out of their car. The cyclist then dusted himself off, picked up the bike and walked away. I had to tell the 911 operator to forget the whole thing. At least the two drivers were cool with each other even if I sounded pretty lame on that 911 call.

I had a second chance to play the good guy. Yesterday morning, while leaving my apartment, I nearly went head first down the short stairwell leading to the building’s entrance. The floors were wet. There was no sign warning other residents. I swung into action! I went down to the really cool super’s basement office and snitched.

But by the time I got back up to the entrance, the floors were dry.

I just ended up looking like an over-anxious nilly.