Road rage revised

The cars and trucks and SUVs moved along South Virginia Street at a snail’s pace. And not your average snail but a snail with gout.

This sluggish scene of vehicular constipation was taking place on that strip of Virginia between Meadowood Mall and the In-N-Out Burger on a December afternoon three days before Christmas. It was taking three to four lights for a northbound car to make it through the intersection of Virginia and Neil Road, a situation that caused the creation of thousands of stressballs in many drivers’ heads, stressballs that would eventually travel down the invisible pathways of motorists’ skulls and necks to find their natural lodging spots in the trapezius muscles, where glowing, white-hot knots of holiday uptightitude would churn and burn.

The traffic was not hell. Or even hellish. There were lots of places worse to be in this world, after all. You could be, for example, an American soldier on patrol in Fallujah, or you could be faced with cleaning up a Sumatran city that is now drowning in trash, filth and tragedy. So the traffic on Virginia Street was not hell. But it did, very clearly, suck. You know how hard it sucked? If this particular traffic situation were mud, and Frankenstein’s monster stepped in it, those big ole stompers he wears would get sucked right off his big ole, suture-riddled feet.

Recognizing this to be a situation of Koyannisqatsi-esque hyper-suction—I know I’m always dropping Koyannisqatsi bombs, and I know you haven’t seen that ultra-cool cult flick from 20 years ago, and I wish Blockbuster had it, but there’s not a snowball’s chance—I did what any intelligent, sentient being would do. I began to swear. It started out as a nice, ordinary stream of basic standards and traditional favorites, and then quickly warmed up into a more complex stream of compounded and hyphenated, thermonuclear profanities. The kind of premium filth that would disappoint one’s grandparents.

When I noticed, though, that every other motorist in my immediate vicinity was engaged in the same primitive mode of cursin’ and cussin,’ I changed gears. After all, I didn’t want to be like every other madman or madwoman out here on the streets. So my body, in an impressive display of instant simpatico with the desires of my mind, cooked up a satisfactory alternative to my oathing riff; it rumbled up a robust belch, which perfectly summed up my feelings at that moment. ’Twas a gruesome vibration, exactly like one of those gastric blasts launched regularly by Barney at Moe’s Bar on The Simpsons, the perfect sound to employ if I ever have to frighten a mountain lion. I began giggling like a third grader.

During these various oral conniptions, my vehicle hadn’t moved more than eight inches. So I started daydreaming about the days of yore, when yore ass occasionally moved on Virginia Street faster than 20 mph.