A calm, easygoing commute

car driving on freeway in heavy traffic

My soothing motivational CD does little to relieve the insufferable hell that is my morning commute.

As you might know, I have a demonstrated propensity for getting stuck behind monstrous, slow-moving trucks on my way to work.

Today was no exception. I was already late, because I had stopped at the Jack in the Box drive-through to get a breakfast sandwich. I’d devoured it even before I reached the highway, and already I regretted not buying a second. I was starving, and my hunger was putting me in a foul mood.

“Stupid sandwich,” I said, grumbling.

As I cruised with the window down and my motivational CD playing (“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the pleasant voice chanted), a gargantuan, smog-belching behemoth of a truck barreled into traffic to cut me off.

I slammed on the brakes, slowing from 55 to 15 in a matter of seconds. My face slammed into the steering wheel and cracked my glasses.

“Dammit!” I screamed, holding my eye.

“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the motivational CD reassured me.

The truck lumbered ahead with uncertain spasms as the driver ground through forty gears. A putrid cloud of thick smog engulfed my car … sort of like the way my aunt’s denture breath engulfs me when she leans in for a kiss.

I put on my blinker to get around the guy, but a parade of cars blocked me. I slowly crossed the lane divider, to prod my way in, but the guy in the car beside me pounded on his horn.

“Up yours, you useless sack of jackass dung!” I screamed, waving my fist.

“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the motivational CD said.

The truck and I crawled along as the jerks in the lane beside us flew by in a frenzied blur. I gritted my teeth as I imagined them arriving at their jobs on time, their hides escaping unscathed from the boss’s furious ass-chewing — an ass-chewing that surely awaited me unless this stupid truck could get itself moving.

“C’mon!” I screamed, thrashing at the wheel and tailgating the truck so closely that his left mud flap was slapping my front bumper. “Move it, you idiotic lamebrain horse’s ass!”

The truck dripped pebbles onto the road and atop my hood. I backed way off, slowing to five miles per hour, but a rock slipped out of the truck and bounced on the road toward me like a deranged stone skipping across an asphalt pond. I tried to swerve, but the rock hit my headlight and shattered it.

“Dammit!” I screamed, slamming my fist repeatedly into the dashboard. “Dammit!”

“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the motivational CD said.

“Shut up!” I said, punching the CD player and making the disc slip.

“You are —” it stammered. “You are. You—”

I punched the CD player again. My knuckle hit the “play” button and split. I yelped as blood started gushing everywhere.

“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the motivational CD droned, reclaiming its cadence.

I grabbed a grubby Jack in the Box wrapper from off the floor — the one that my breakfast sandwich had been wrapped in — and cinched it around my hand to bandage the wound. Grease and dirt rubbed against the cut, making me clench my teeth and grimace.

Meanwhile, we were still inching along at 15 miles per hour. Even the Ice Age had made better time on its way to work.

“C’mon!” I screamed, wringing the steering wheel as if it were a dishcloth.

“You are a calm—”

“Shut up!” I hollered.

We were on a narrow road with no shoulder. I drifted over to the right, but I couldn’t see around the truck. So I drifted back to the left, but the stream of cars alongside me wouldn’t break, even though my left blinker was still flashing.

I started wailing on the horn and blinking my headlights. (Well, the one that wasn’t busted, anyway.)

The truck driver dangled his arm out the window and extended his middle finger.

“You jerk!” I yelled, pressing on the horn with all my strength.

The truck had a sign affixed to its tailgate that said “Safety is my goal.” However, there was no indication that getting up to speed was on his list of aspirations.

At that moment, a basketball-sized rock slid off the back of the truck and plodded onto my hood. I swerved off the road and barreled out of control across dirt and brush, careening into a parked trailer with a sign that said “Joe’s Jackass Dung.”

Unimaginable foulness spewed everywhere in a nasty, putrescent explosion.

Meanwhile, the truck kept crawling along, dripping pebbles onto the highway. One bounced and ricocheted off the shoulder, flying into and shattering my second headlight.

“You are a calm, easygoing person,” the motivational CD soothed me. “You are a calm—”

I punched the CD player with my good hand. My knuckle hit the “play” button and burst open, spraying blood everywhere.

Only this time, I didn’t have a Jack in the Box wrapper to bandage it with, because in my rush, I had neglected to buy the second sandwich that I had so desperately wanted.

“Stupid sandwich,” I said, grumbling.

8 comments on “A calm, easygoing commute

  1. So, just another day on the way to the office, then.
    Wow! I hope your day got better after that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, and I thought my morning was bad… Oh and by the way, I’m stealing your “useless sack of jackass dung,” it’s a much more creative insult than I normally come up with on the fly. Very impressive indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ll never complain about having to take the bus again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, riding the bus to work is all fun and games until Keanu Reeves jumps onboard and screams that you can’t go under fifty miles an hour. Hoping the boss understands I was late because I was busy jumping over a fifty-foot gap in the freeway.


  4. At least you’ve got a breakfast sandwich to focus your rage on. If I’m alone in the car I really take it out on myself.

    Liked by 1 person

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