Portage la Prairie, MB –
A pleasant stroll along Crescent Lake turned ugly when Art Greene stopped to answer a question.
Generally people respond to the question “How are you?” or “How’s it going?” with a polite and acceptable response that is short if not dishonest. Fine or great, are considered normal replies.
What Mr. Greene did was not normal or acceptable. While Greene was walking east bound on the path a casual acquaintance walking west bound greeted him.
“I just asked him how he was,” Jake Boychuck said. “I was being friendly. I didn’t want a scene.”
Greene inexplicably stopped and proceeded to answer the question in great detail.
“He stood in the middle of the path and started to tell me all about his crappy health, nagging wife, disappointing kids and displeasure with his church.” Boychuck said. “He kept going on and on telling me how he really was. I was so uncomfortable. I didn’t know what to do.”
The social etiquette slip up turned into a problem when another passer-by was greeted by Greene with a “how are you.” The person responded by saying, “Fine. How about you.” Greene took the response as a cue to invite the person into his conversation with Boychuck creating a person-jam on the path preventing people from getting by and forcing them onto the grass.
Two rollerbladers and a cyclist came upon the scene and veered off into the grass stirring up the goose droppings and scaring the geese toward Greene, Boychuck and the other person on the path.
The geese hissed and charged the group but Greene encouraged the group to hold their ground. The mob of geese and people stopped all traffic on the path and additional walkers arriving on the scene called 911.
The police arrived within minutes and after a short investigation arrested Greene for disobeying the path rules and being the cause of the disturbance.
A date for his trial is not yet set and he is banned from walking on the path until after his first court appearance.
Greene is known to police for previous path violations and as recently as 2016 he was arrested and charged for yelling at the geese and attempting to scare them away.
“Mr. Greene must learn to follow the rules of the path,” Officer Darling said. “He also has to realize when people ask him how he is; they don’t want hear about his life. No one really cares how he is they just want to use the path in peace.
Police remind path users to follow the important path rules as violation could result in charges.