Miserable Morning Commute

Car ride, originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

In case you have not heard the latest news, there are reports all over the Internets about a raging 9 day traffic jam in Beijing that spans over 60 miles. Nine days?!? That’s a lot of time for a traffic jam, don’t you think?

Now, we don’t have traffic jams like that in Austin, but we do have some, by those standards, what you would have to call “bad hair days.” You know what I’m talking about here, just those kind of annoying snarls that get you, but nothing as serious as that.

To give you an example, I was driving the other day and got stuck in what I would have to call a “bad traffic hair day.” Picture this. I was driving, it’s hot, I’m stuck behind this truck that just won’t move. I mean, won’t move, not now, not ever, just won’t. I’m even starting to wonder why they bothered to put wheels on the thing. It’s hot. The radio is playing nothing but annoying commercials and moldy oldie songs from the 70’s-not the good ones, mind you-there were some good songs in the 70’s, but do they play those? No. These are more like songs that seemed old the first decade I heard them. Crap that should have left us in the disco era and now is back like a bad case of crotch rot in a slightly humid gym. I’m punching buttons on the radio hoping to drum up some Mexican music, something on NPR, or anything from this decade that isn’t an advertising jingle designed to get me to eat a my local hamburger joint or use a particular dry cleaners. I even try to look around in traffic and there’s just more misery all over this highway.

There’s a fat guy on a motorcycle wearing a too tight T-shirt from an Irish bar in San Diego called “O’Brien’s” or some such thing. Great, that t-shirt is so far from authentic I want to cry, not to mention it probably fit him something like 2000 doughnuts ago. He’s got on one of those helmets that looks like it’s a hard pot from the war. I look closely, I see it’s got some kind of decal on it, stuck on the back. “Fuck Obama” I think it says. Great to know the textbook picture of class and civility is stuck next to me in traffic-that’s always comforting. Quick, everybody, save the children, he used the F-bomb.

Then there’s this yellow Mazda. Who buys a car that color? Bright yellow with black and yellow interior and trim? It’s like a rolling bumble bee with tires that. And a Mazda? Really? Isn’t that the world’s most boring brand of automobile? What, like you want everybody, every last person in the entire known universe, to know you have no taste in vehicles, so you went and got yourself a bright yellow one? Lucky you-I’m the one stuck in traffic forced to actually look at it. Somebody, please poke my eyes out with a stick to save me from this misery.

So, I’m bored, we’re not moving, it’s hot, and there’s not even damn Mexican jumping music on the radio. I want to pound my dashboard. I want to pull my hair out and scream. Yeah, it’s a bad day behind the wheel. God, I hope somewhere over in England the Stig is posting a gloriously fast lap time. Somebody on this freaking blue ball of a planet had better be spinning, that’s all I can say.

Then, I think about the people in China. What are they doing, trapped in a raging traffic jam for nine days? Nine days?!? Imagine what you would do? Call for pizza? “Hi, I’m about 186,794,365 cars back from the light. The little white one, can’t miss it!” Have sex with your girlfriend? Channel Willie Nelson and smoke some good dope? Pray the sun sets so you can take a nap and drool all over your dashboard? Nine days!

Beep beep! Nine days is a long time, don’t you think?

Until next time…



  1. mythopolis
    August 26, 2010 / 12:58 am

    Makes me glad I've retired.

  2. Carol
    September 4, 2010 / 5:46 am

    Some days, I swear, I wish I could work from home (or just never get out of bed at all!)

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