Driving Anxiety

I had a dream last night that I owned two polar bears and the one trick they could do was to drive a car in the snow. I believe like almost all of my dreams, this one is indicative of my fear of driving--a fear that I have to face now that I'm living in Jersey and commuting across highways to get to and from work every day. In defending my scaredy-catness to Dan, I realized that most of my fear comes from not having driven very much at all for the last 17+ years. I lived for 5 years in Chicago without a car, then 6 years in State College without a car until my last year, and then 6 more years in Philly only using the car to drive to Acme and Target, essentially stop and go city traffic where you never get up past 25 miles an hour. So, making this adjustment to one of the worst routes in the country (Route 1) in a place with many of the most aggressive drivers you'll never want to meet (Jerseyites) along a stretch of road that has numerous places where people merge from strip malls and others fly across lanes because they're lost--the transition has been an adjustment.

Here is one irrational fear I have that I can't seem to shake: what if I suddenly go blind while driving? Hear me out though---my eye doctor has warned me that my retina could detach at any moment. Couldn't that happen as I'm trying to make a sharp turn to merge from Route 1 onto Skudder's Mill Road (another race-track like part of my drive)? Also, my night vision isn't great. Also, there are numerous suicidal deer along these roads. 

Helen Keller: What if I become her?

On another note, the CD player in my car isn't working, so I've been listening to the radio in the mornings, and there's music playing on maybe every 15th station--the rest are all morning shows debating dumb stuff. But I was reminded again of the need for a word to describe a particular moment that happens when you're flipping through radio stations. It's those few seconds of a listening pause between when you hear what sounds like rock music but wait to see if it's really Christan rock. You have to strain sometimes to discern the lyrics, but then you'll get a line like a man singing, "And then the water turned to wine..." and you know to keep going.  What's a good word for that?


Anonymous said…
Holy Rolling IF it's specific to avoiding Christian music. Or just plain old boring scanning for tunes.