Thursday, June 26, 2014

Fit Flopped? Strike a Pose!

Okay, so maybe yesterday wasn't a normal day for Elizabeth and Benjamin Neufeld.  We're not quite sure why, but somehow, the sporty Honda Fit Elizabeth was driving ended up on its side at the curb outside of their tony Bel Air home in Los Angeles.  But as you can see, the neighbors seem more excited by the situation than the Neufeld's.

That's Elizabeth, unhurt and unfrazzled, still in the driver's seat, with a pink-and-white blouse, with Benjamin, standing outside - both posing for the camera.  According to their neighbors, one of whom can be seen on top of the car, with the passenger door open, Elizabeth took some selfies with her cell phone, and then passed her purse and her cell phone through to her husband, who asked a neighbor to take a few snapshots before the fire department arrived to extricate his wife.

Is this how you'd be handling the aftermath of your car having flipped on its side?

"Calm as a cucumber" is now Benjamin described his wife, as he chatted amicably with reporters who were clearly surprised by such sanguinity.  Some reports say that the Neufelds were in the car together when it tipped over, but others have video of Benjamin quietly describing how he heard a noise like somebody moving a metal garbage can, him going outside to see what was going on, and then seeing a group of neighbors around his wife's car, socializing like they were at a backyard barbecue.

"I was concerned, of course," he recalled, "but everyone was just standing around and she was chatting with them, so I just joined the conversation.  I didn't do very much. There wasn't much to do."

After help arrived, Elizabeth was safely freed from their car, and it was towed away, the couple went inside and had dinner.

Remarkable, huh?

The Neufelds are both in their 80's, and have been married for over 60 years, so it's worth asking whether either one of them should be driving at their time of life.   And what about that Honda Fit, which while being a highly-rated economy car, obviously has a wonky center of gravity when it comes to curbs?

Nevertheless, there's something indomitable about the Neufelds, isn't there?  A "let's just make the best of things" type of attitude that seems scarce these days.  Granted, the affluent neighborhood in which they live - their street runs the crest of a ridge with stunning views of Los Angeles - could be easily enjoyed by any of us, but how many people even in neighborhoods like Bel Air are as unflappable as this couple?

Maybe if the Neufelds owned a $200,000 hand-made Bentley, like the stereotypical Bel Air resident, they'd be more upset.  But then again, as heavy as those British super-luxury cars are, the chances of one of them tipping over are probably nil.

So here's to Elizabeth and Benjamin Neufeld.  We'd have never have heard of you otherwise, but your fifteen minutes of fame has been one of the good kind:  endearing.

Keep calm, and carry on... and pose for a photo or two.

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