Seeing as how the name of my blog is The Road and I, I figure I’m not going to get very far without actually talking about the road in some way. A road. The road. Any road. Whatever. So, here I am, 1:30 in the morning, writing about the road. For you, because I care. You’re welcome.
Tonight was a good night. It marked the end of a long work week and I got to celebrate it by having a few drinks with my favorite cousin and her boyfriend earlier in the evening. My cousin just turned 21; her boyfriend did the same a few days later. I promised to take them for drinks (#sainthood) whenever I got back to town, and tonight was the night.
A drink, or five, was exactly what I needed to take the edge off. I just came back into town following a 6 hour drive on almost no sleep, plus all the actual work I had to do beforehand. Now, I can tell you the route I took or the exact roads I used, but it won’t make a difference. Every road seems to have the same issues as every other road at one point in time or another: construction, falling apart, cops, traffic, road rage, absolutely zero light in the middle of the night (so dark even your brights don’t do much). So don’t worry about which way I went.
I spend a fairly solid amount of time behind the wheel, lost/trapped in my own head, fighting other drivers, braving road conditions. Today was no exception. What’s that? A pothole? Right before a blind hill with traffic at a dead stop on the other side because 3 guys can’t figure out how to race each other on a busy highway without causing a wreck? Good thing I’m trapped on all sides and have to take that pothole right in the axle before before slamming on my brakes while bouncing all over the road to avoid rear-ending any of the stopped vehicles in front of me on other side of that glorious hill.
What? More? Some bastard in a Taurus is going 3 miles under the speed limit in the left lane and refuses to move over to the right? Regardless of how many times I flash my brights and lay on the horn? Even though Texas highways are practically littered with signs telling people that the left lane is for passing only and to keep right at all times? Well, I’ve only been behind you for 7 miles, guess I’ll go ahead and pass you on the right. OH! Taurus McAsshat is going to speed up and get in front of me in the right lane now! Tricky little guy. Let’s play that game for another 30 miles until you see a cop and slam on the brakes.
Time to stop for gas. Nothing dumb ever happens at a gas station. Like leaving the pump unattended, letting gas spill out of your tank all over the ground, yelling at me for taking the nozzle out of your car and hanging it up as you light a cigarette once you come out the store to let me know I have no right to do that, and then yelling at noone in particular because you got gas all over your pretty little boots. Sorry guy, you deserve it.
You aren’t actually going to talk about the actual road are you? Surely you have some metaphor to tie all this together with? About the road being a journey and not just some piece of pavement with too many drivers?
Well I guess I’ll go ahead and try that out. It’s after 2 in the morning, I’m exhausted, and noone likes a rambling man. That was super clever of me, by the way. Look up “Ramblin Man” by the Allman Brothers Band.
Anyway, as I said before, I get lost/trapped in my own head on these long drives. After navigating my way through throngs of traffic and speed traps, I eventually found myself looking at things from the other side of the street. The other drivers are probably having just as shitty of a time as I am.
All that dead traffic in front of me had to hit that same pothole. Everyone behind me has to slam on their brakes so as not to hit each other as they bounces all over the road. Taurus McAsshat? Well, he probably had no clue what I was following him like that for and was stressing out about it. But he still had no excuse. Read the signs. Rage Boots at the gas station? Maybe his wife just left him for being an insane moron with no regard to the safety of those around him. Maybe he just got fired for walking into the office with boots that smell like gas all the time. Who knows? His day could be going terribly.
Every one of us has a road that needs to be driven. It can be handled with patience and understanding or with a complete lack of situational awareness that creates a sort of organized chaos. You’ll get from point A to point B. But you’ll feel stressed out the whole way there and probably afterwards, along with everyone else around you. So be patient and understanding. Travel your road safely. You only get one life. There are a lot of potholes to navigate along the way and it’s a lot simpler to get by with help and kindness from others.
So there you have it. Talk about the actual road? Check. Fun anecdotes from today that fit perfectly with the topic at hand? Check. Metaphor of some kind about the road being a journey through life to tie it all together? CHECK. My job is great, the travel that goes with it is fantastic, and being able to share my thoughts and experiences with you as I go along is outstanding. The road I’m taking is McDonald’s. I’m loving it.
It’s 2:33 in the morning, I’m still tired. Imagine that. I’m sure my cousin has just finished drinking for the night with her significant other. It’s time for me to pass out. Or watch Iron Man 3.
Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.