Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Murphy's Law of Traffic Lights

So I'm headed to school this morning, about ten minutes late. I had just finished reading this article for my sociology class written by a Native American woman about the schools for Native Americans when she was growing up. One thing she mentioned was how in the old days, Indians would be plucked from their homes where they lived by their body's natural healthy clock, and placed in the white world where they lived under the tyranny of the artificial clock. So reading that, I kind of lost regard for time as I know it. Heading to school ten minutes late however, I didn't have a whole lot of patience for traffic lights. I wasn't terribly stressed or anything, I don't really get that stressed anymore, I just didn't want to get there too late. One thing I've noticed, along a couple of the roads I drive in the morning, if you get stopped by one light, you get stopped by the whole string. So, after stopping for a couple lights, I gunned it when the next light turned yellow, ending up blatantly running it after it had turned red. Oh well, I try not to make a habit out of it, but it happens. So eventually, I got caught in another string of red lights. Basically, I spent the whole trip wanting the lights to be green instead of red.

On the way back, I decided to stop by Fred Meyer and get a plant. I wanted one that was foresty, maybe tropical, not just some yellowing spider plant. There turned out to be a pretty good selection for about six bucks a plant. I ended up choosing one with a tag saying that it's good for purifying toxic air, so I figured it would be healthy to have around. I call it Mr. Planty Man. Anyways, one of the things written on the tag was to keep it out of direct sunlight. So I brought it out to the car, nice hot sunny day out, and placed it on the floor between the dash and the front passenger seat. After driving for a little ways, I noticed that the leaves in the sunlight, which had been firm and waxy, were becoming dull and soggy. So I turned it around, but I didn't want the leaves to look like that all the way around when I got it home, so I decided to cover it with my sunshade. Driving along trying to feel in the back seat for my sunshade, I stopped at a red light for just long enough to find it and drive on. I needed to place it just right, from the dashboard, over to the front passenger seat in order to cover it. So I got to a red light, and tried to position it, when the light turned green and it was time to go again. As I slowed for the next light, that one turned green, and traffic started again. Before long, I realized the irony that I was now hoping for a red light to stop at, in contrast to that morning and my denial that the lights were in fact, red. After the next teaser of a red light, I tried to fix it in place anyway, and found myself drifting towards a car in the left hand lane on the other side. So I stopped and just held it in place for a little while. Eventually, I got to light that was changing red just as I drove up to it. I got the shade in place, covering the plant for about a quarter of a mile until I got home.


Don't forget to check out the Legend of the Green Dragon.

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