Tuesday’s Theme Music

Ah, an old favorite, from about fifty years ago. Here’s Humble Pie with a 1972 cover of Jr Walker’s “Road Runner”. It speaks to being on the road yesterday, and then doing some hard hiking.



Friday’s Theme Music

Today’s music comes right out of my dream.

To begin in the dream, my older sister and I were in a walk-in closet. No reason ever became clear as to why we were there. She was chattering, as she’ll sometimes do, which irritated me. A song was playing. The song was muffled, as though it was being heard through walls. I knew the song but I couldn’t place it because of her chattering.

Then I was in a car, driving. My car was fourth in line. We were on a street with a double-yellow line. The three cars ahead of me were on the left side — the wrong side — of the road. I didn’t know why. They were going very slowly. The road was in excellent shape but the fact that we were on road’s wrong side annoyed me. No signs were visible to account for that. I wanted to change over to the right side but not knowing why they were on the left side – what did they know? – kept me behind them, following. I was hugely irked.

Music played then, something about going straight. Then the song, “Amber” by 311 played. I thought amber is all about warning, as in amber flashing lights. “Amber” didn’t end, but “Forty Days and Forty Nights” began. That song, covered by Steppenwolf, was what I’d heard in the closet with my sister.

It was still streaming in my head when I awoke, so here it is, today’s theme music, the Muddy Waters classic as Steppenwolf did it in 1970. Enjoy a little bluesy rock.

Lane Envy

Lane Envy – anxiety and desire to be in a different lane, often associated with driving and shopping.

In use: “Seeing the other lane going much faster, lane envy struck, prompting him to contemplate moving, but he knew the shopping gods were playing a cruel joke on him. As soon as he changed lanes, this one would go faster, so he stood where he was and bridled his longing to go to another cashier.”

The Old Friends Dream

I dreamed that I was with a lot of old friends. People I’d gone to school with, neighborhood friends from my youth, and people I’d worked with around the world while in the Air Force, or working in Progressive Angioplasty Systems, Tyco, Internet Security Systems, and IBM were there. Writing friends were there, along with sports and drinking buddies.

No occasion that I know was mentioned for the gathering. We were just having a big party in an enormous ballroom, a place so large that I couldn’t see the other side. Well-lit, round tables were set with crystal and silver.

Weirdly, I entered after being out with some, and that’s when the dream proper began. I’d been with one person who I no longer wanted to be with. I had no enmity with him, but he was drunk and being obnoxious, so I was avoiding him. As I was skirting where he was, a group of friends streamed in. Seeing me, they shouted, “There he is,” and waved, happy to see me. I joined them, and we chatted, having a good time.

Then Chris suggested we go somewhere. “Where?” I asked.

“Who cares,” he said, with the friendly and easy smile that he habitually presented.

“Let’s go,” I said. “We can take my car, but I don’t want to drive.”

Chris said, “I’ll drive.”

We got into my silver Mazda. I was in the back seat. Setting off, we talked about where to go. Chris came up with a suggestion, but nobody knew where it was. “Use the GPS,” I said. Chris knew how to do that and pressed the buttons needed.

With my next awareness, we were at a more intimate setting. Many of my friends were there in their party clothes, but everyone seemed tired, I think from partying so much. They were barely interested in the music.

And that was amazing, because up on stage was a young Marvin Gaye with a back-up group. All of them were in amazing bright blue outfits with white shirts.

Marvin finished his performance. I looked around, like, why isn’t anyone applauding. As I began clapping, so did someone else. Putting his hands out, Marvin said, “Hey,” and everyone else sat up and applauded.

Then Jeff was by my side. Pointing at Marvin, he said, “He’s wearing a one.”

Yes, the number one was in black on a white porcelain appearing badge that hung down from his shoulders on his front. Seeing Jeff point at him, Marvin came over to speak with us. I was awed to be in such close proximity to such a creative and intelligent person. He was so pleasant and polite. We shook hands and chatted, and then Jeff, pointing again at Marvin, said, “That one is for London Park, isn’t it?”

“Yes,” Marvin agreed.

Jeff bobbed his head with enthusiasm. “I was there, I’ve been there.”

Bewildered, I wanted to ask, where’s London Park? I’ve never heard of London Park. How do you know the one is for London Park?

I didn’t get the chance, because that’s where the dream ended.

Don’t You Hate It?

Don’t you hate it when you’re stopped behind two other cars, because they’ve legally stopped for a person in the crosswalk, and the car coming up behind you whips into the other land and accelerates to about ten M.P.H. over the speed limit and just misses the pedestrian in the crosswalk?

Yeah, I don’t think the man in the crosswalk was happy, either. Mindful of people being like icebergs, with so much of them hidden out of sight, I wonder what kind of idiot is driving that car.

Thursday’s Theme Music

I dreamed last night that I was driving a convertible with the top down on an oceanside road. I was alone, and the weather was gorgeous. The road could been the stretch of Pacific Coast Highway between Big Sur and Carmel. I saw myself and the scene from different angles, like I was in a movie montage, but I don’t know what kind of car it was. No one else was seen in the dream, just me, happily driving. (Almost seems like a pretty metaphor for my writing process.) This song, “One of Us,” performed by Joan Osborn was playing on the car radio during this dream montage.


Cynical Me

“Anyone driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone driving faster is a maniac.”

George Carlin had it right. I stew behind other drivers, awaiting the day when they will be in a self-driving car, leaving me to self-righteously and serenely pilot my car around the roads the proper way.

I have categories for “them,” the other drivers that irritate me. Probably at the top of my list are bizarro drivers, employing a secret logic for their decisions. “School zone with a speed limit of twenty? I’ll go thirty-three. Residential area with a speed limit of twenty-five? I’ll go thirty-three. Country road where the speed limit increases to thirty-five? I better slow down to twenty-eight.”

WTF? I canna fathom their thinking. I’ve written it before and will do so again, their brains are wired backwards. Further proof of this is how they treat yield and stop signs with the exact opposite behavior directed by the sign, and the law behind the sign. It’s a yield sign, so they’ll stop. It’s a stop sign, so they’ll roll through. When “their lane” is ending, they don’t make an effort to signal, move over, merge and integrate, oh, no, that would be too logical. They just keep going straight, hanging onto their lane until others are forced to give way and let them in.


Let’s not even consider what the hell happens in traffic circles and parking lots. Both of them are like driving in the Thunder Dome. Add rain to the mix….

What is it with rain that it seems to make so many drivers frantic and more erratic? It’s as though the rain causes them to think, “Which out, it’s raining,” and their backward wired brains trigger the opposite of safe behavior. “It’s raining, let’s speed, and not use turn signals, and drive down the road straddling the dividing lines, because we want to be safe.”

Madness, I tell you, frigging madness. Add in some distraction, and OMG. The distraction need not be much. Construction in progress and police cars with flashing lights going off to one side, I can understand, but why are you slowing down to look at people walking dogs? Have you never seen people and dogs before? Are you looking for missing people or missing dogs? Are you not familiar with creatures walking?

This bizarro behavior afflicts cyclists, too. More than half of the cyclists that I encounter around our little town are on the sidewalks. All those great bike lines and bike paths? They seem to treat them like they’re lava zones that will kill them if they enter.

No, I don’t understand. But then, everyone else is an idiot or a maniac. I’m the only sane nut on the roads.

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