Lost in New Jersey

I figured out why New Jersey drivers are on the whole so jerky and aggressive--it's because it sucks to drive in New Jersey. Everyone is impatient to get to wherever they're going, just to be able to get out of their cars and finished with the never not frustrating experience of  three lanes of traffic with cars going at various speeds from 45 to 75 miles and hour. Even when you're not on Route 1, driving is annoying.  On Scudder's Mill Road, it is pretty much impossible to go for longer than thirty seconds before hitting a red light.  So, the last three miles of my commute home can take ten minutes.  The worst is when you get stopped at any of the nonsense lights like the one at Bristol Meyers Squibb where two cars are waiting or the one at the Marriott Complex where again two cars are waiting.

I did this thing yesterday where I attempted to take a new way home by getting off of at the Meadow Road exit that runs behind Market Fair. However, whatever I was supposed to do, I didn't, because instead of finding the back way, I managed to just get a nice circular tour of the mall, before being given the option to get back on Route 1 N again or to continue circling Market Fair for a second time like a shark. And so there I was, back on Route 1 again, about fifty feet ahead of where I'd exited five minutes before.

It probably doesn't help that my CD player in my car is broken, so I"m at the mercy of the radio stations here with talk show hosts with names like Tingle and the Goose.  My friend at work, who knows how much I hate the drive, suggests that I listen to books on tape. But I don't want to listen to books on tape. I don't want to be in my car alone, listening to 25 minutes of Julia Roberts narrating Eat Pray Love while I weave in and out of traffic.

Being in Philadelphia this weekend reminded me that I want to actually be allowed to walk from one location to the next--I miss the trek through the neighborhood and being on the look out for interesting windows decorated with Virgin Mary's next to ,like, a NRA sticker. I also miss the subway, where you can just watch and where I can take pictures surreptitiously or eavesdrop on conversational bits to steal for my writing or whatever.

Is there something I can do on my drive that's creative and gives me something to work with? I can't take pictures without endangering my life. I could tape record what's happening around me and create some kind of daily blog  update about the assholes in the cars around me. And take note that I'm becoming just like them, cutting people off, going too fast, prioritizing my own desire to just get there already over every other person around me. Yesterday, I honked my horn at a lady for not getting off at her exit fast enough. Like, in that mean way you can honk your horn, where you keep it compressed down to emphasize your rage, not the polite one quick tap honk that says, Hey, you might want to notice that there are people in cars around you. All ideas are welcome.


bravo said…
I think it looks amazing. I'm not sure I would have had the patience that you had though!