Of the Battle on Mother’s Day

Traffic

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On Mother’s Day I had to open at work. My family rather than waiting to schedule their party at 4PM, when I could actually be there, decided start without me at 2PM. I was late – nothing unusual there.

Before going to Brother’s house I went to pick up Sister, whose blood-family was in Arizona. Partially for her to help keep me sane and because my family loves her. She’s been around since we were eight-years-old, even the fam calls her Sister as if that was her real name. We were giddy and dancing to pop music as I was driving, normally I head to Brother’s house going south but today I was going north, so I missed the exit.

“It’s cool, we can get to Highway 99 from the next exit can’t we?” I asked.

Sister shrugged, “We can try.”

Within a minute I saw the cars in front of me slam on their breaks sending an unwanted abundance of red lights my direction, great, I thought. We weren’t moving, no one was, after about ten minutes of sitting behind a Canadian semi-truck I realized that we weren’t going anywhere soon.

Hey I’m stuck in traffic on the freeway I don’t think I’ll be able to move for a while, I texted Brother.

Sister and I kept seeing the occasional jerk pull out of the lane and drive along the shoulder. Those cars then aggressively forced their way into the front of the line and take the exit that I was also wanting – in fact, it was roughly 100 feet from where I was sitting in the traffic jam.

“No! That’s no how it works!” Sister was pissed, she hates obnoxious drivers. She began flipping off all the people who drove along the shoulder as if that wasn’t against the law, more importantly to her, it was flat-out rude and thus intolerable behavior.

“Really?” I said talking as if the drivers could hear me, “What made you think that that’s okay?”

In my rear view mirror I saw a car about four people behind me start to slip out onto the shoulder, “Oh Hell no,” I said, “bitch I want the same exit you do.” And with that statement I let out my passive aggressive side and pulled my car half onto the shoulder and half in my lane. I looked behind me and saw at least one other car doing exactly what I did to someone else, this made me happy. The little black car was forced to stop. I stared in my mirror at the rude driver, I’m going to guess she was somewhere between 50-60 with graying hair and a poorly fitted black tank top. Her passenger, a man, seemed to not care at all about the traffic. She was clearly annoyed.

She began pointing, which is quite possibly the weakest threat I’ve ever seen. Soon we began to inch forward, I kept forcing her to go with the speed of traffic. Whenever she tried to move around me I just got more over, but I still stayed in my lane. She had the options of waiting in line or driving into a ditch off the side of the freeway.

One time she tried honking, Sister got even more angry and blatantly flipped her off, “I swear, honking is way worse than flipping someone off. Wait your turn bitch!” she yelled.

“If she honks again you’re getting out and telling her we want the same exit and she has to wait her fucking turn.” I said, Sister nodded in agreement.

For the next ten minutes we were talking about as gangster as we can get, Sister changed the music from pop to rap as her passive aggressive bad ass side got more and more bitter. I don’t think I’ve (or rather we’ve) ever said, “What, what, fucking wait your turn, bitch, what, you got a problem, rude, really? what makes you think this is okay, what?” so many times in my (our) life.

As we got closer to the exit we saw flares on the road, a couple firetrucks, and a policeman passed by on opposite shoulder that I was annoying the lady in the little black car on.

“Damn, I wonder what happened?” I said.

“I don’t know,” Sister replied, “but there’s flares involved. That’s crazy.”

Finally we reached the exit. The black car followed us along the exit as we traveled at a normal speed.

“See?” I said, once again as if she could hear me, “I told you. You had to wait you turn, bitch!”

“That was fucking ridiculous,” Sister said.

At the end of the off ramp we turned right and to our surprise the little black car got BACK ON THE FREEWAY. Why’d they even bother trying to get off so forcefully if they were going to hop straight back into traffic in the first place? We couldn’t figure it out.

“Maybe she thinks the traffic will not exist on the other end of the exit?” Sister asked.

Of course that wasn’t true. I don’t know what the accident was, but I do know that there was not a magical change in traffic between the off and on ramps. That woman was just a rude and dumb driver. Granted, I wasn’t the nicest driver either – but I was a gangster with a justified reason.

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Of My Ride in a Cop Car

Girl Walking Outside - Awesome Coat

I want that cloak.

Last night I almost punched my computer, kicked it across the room, and did a lovely tap dance on top of it, then repeat said actions on the entirety of WWU campus computer lab I was in. All because of a dang code writing project for one of my computer classes. Don’t worry, I won’t bore you with the painful details on writing PHP code and trying to incorporate CSS and HTML in order to make a cohesive webpage – though, it does make me sound super smart. The point is, because of this project I was on campus till 2:45AM. I easily could have been there till 5 or 6AM, but I wanted to catch the 3AM shuttle home.

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It was cold. Hell, it was fucking freezing (note the oxymoron in the sentence and I’ll give you a dollar). It was the annoying kind of freezing where it looks warm. That happens a lot around here, it doesn’t snow often, so the cold feels extra cold because it looks like it’s actually 50+ degrees outside. It messes with your senses.

As I walked towards the bus stop I was convinced I was the only alert human being on campus. That moment would have been a great time to mug, rape, or murder me, for no one would notice till the normal waking hours. I was almost at the stop when I saw a bus turn the corner, that meant that I’d have to wait at minimum 15 minutes for the next bus to come along. I didn’t like that. Not at all.

The bus stop had the shuttle schedule posted, the last bus would arrive at 2:56AM and it was 2:48AM. I was psyched! Until at 2:56AM I watched the bus not turn down my direction, rather it took the road with NO BUS STOPS ON IT! The shuttle schedule lied! And now I was standing alone on the sidewalk in the dark and wintry weather. Obviously I was pissed, I practically started crying and had to resist the urge to do an angry dance like Kevin Bacon in Footloose.

I was in a state of limbo – should I call people or just walk?

I decided to call my close friends with cars, of course no one answered, considering the hour. Eventually I saw a cop drive by, then I watched it slow, U-turn and eventually pull up next to me. This is the second time this has ever happened to me. The first was at Jessy’s birthday party when I was drunk and hugging a fire hydrant – that’s a whole different story, I’ll write it later, promise.

It was a male cop, he questioned what I was doing out so late. I explained the shuttle situation to which he responded rather unsympathetically that it ends at three. I knew this, I told him about the bus driving passed me and how none of my friends answered their phones. He suddenly looked sympathetic, asked where I live, and motioned for me to get in the backseat.

The seat was hard plastic and the seat belt looked like it had been designed for a space ship. There was limited leg room and a glass window separating me from the officer. My first thought was, how do they arrest fat people? They’d never fit. The ride was awkwardly silent, I tried to break the ice: introduced myself – mostly I just said thank you a lot.

When we reached my apartment he got out, opened the door for me, and said, “It’s like a limo but less comfortable.”

I smiled, “I really appreciate it,” then walked towards my door while he drove away.

I really hope that is the last time I ride in the backseat of a cop car.

Of Girls, Cars, and Breakdowns

Girl, Broken Down Car

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It’s 1:17AM, just got home, smell like popcorn, and I still have an entire assignment to write.

Damn.

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I drive an old man car: a 1995 Century Buick. This car tends to run hot. VERY hot. The oil temperature (gauge?) thingy typically resides at about 3/4 or higher. For months I’ve been periodically (sometimes consistently) blasting the heat with the windows cracked, this usually lowers the temperature to a little higher than 1/2 – clearly, I’m not car savvy.

I call my Buick a sauna for a reason.

Tonight, for the first time, my old man car bitched out to the point where the gauge was so dangerously close to overheating that I had to pull over.

Thanks to movies, books, and television a young girl sitting by the side of the road at 12:30AM would result in one of five possible circumstances:

  1. A man pulls up and does something bad to the girl: rape, murder, kidnap, torture
  2. The girl is actually a psychopath and does something bad to an unsuspecting bystander
  3. Man stops to see if she’s okay – they fall in love
  4. Porno
  5. A cop asks what’s going on

None of the above happened. I sat there for about fifteen minutes with my heat on blast, waiting for the engine to cool down. Nothing happened. I felt like I was in an Indie movie as I sat in the dark watching cars drive by listening to the gentle harmonies and beautiful strings of Iron and Wine as they sung cinder and smoke, you’ll ask me to pray for rain, with ash in your mouth, you’ll ask it to burn again. My car swayed each time a car drove by, when the semi’s passed by my car rocked like a cradle. I watched headlights come and go, none of them slowed, most of them changed into the lane furthest from me. Not a single cop came by, part of me was hoping one would, just for the sake of a story. But nothing happened. My car cooled to driving temperature and I finally drove home.

I saw a car on the side of the road. I didn’t slow – the car looked abandoned.

I didn’t see a cop until I reached Bellingham; right next to my exit. It was parked uselessly on the side of the road lazily waiting for trouble to find them.

Thus I’ve concluded the following: if anyone is stranded on the freeway and they don’t have a cellphone on hand – they are fucked.