I was driving across town to get to my writers group meeting. Sun in my face, wind in my hair, Beastie Boys on the radio, lollipop crammed in my mouth. Yes, this is the Real Housewives of New Westminster, owning Canada Way. Watch me drive my filthy, silver sedan.
There weren’t a lot of people on the road, it being 7:45 pm on a Tuesday. There was one guy. You know the guy. He’s got to be first. He revs his engine and inches toward a red light, as though the sheer force of his mind will make the light change faster. He wears a baseball cap backward. He does the exaggerated double-take whenever he sees buttocks.
He was driving a beater of a red car, rusty and ugly but with a very important muffler. I first spotted him three cars behind me and then he was two cars behind me and then he was next to me and then he was behind me again because the guy in the lane next to me was cruising at a nice, safe speed limit. I wanted him off my bumper so I did him a favour and sped up a bit so he could get past. Then I watched as he wound his way around the other cars on the road to arrive first at the next red light. First!
I sucked on my lollipop. I enjoyed the sunshine. I dangled one arm out the window and thought about Mme Perpetua and the conversation we had on twitter about the new Beastie Boys album.
The lights along Canada Way, which is just a major thoroughfare, not a highway or anything, operate so that if you get one red light, you get all red lights, no matter how fast you go or how much like a deranged cretin you drive. So at the next red light I caught up to Mr. Red Car. I looked over at him. He was either four feet tall or sitting on the floor of his car. You decide. He was staring straight ahead and his car was going:
Yes, it throbbed, like his manhood.
My car radio played some Jack Johnson. Something about banana pancakes and making sweet love on a rainy Sunday morning. I thought about how I might punch Jack Johnson in the face if he interrupted a rainy Sunday morning sleep-in to offer me pancakes or sweet love. I thought about how Jack Johnson did not write the song Banana Pancakes about a couple of people who have children in the house.
The light turned green and Mr. Red Car went vaaaaruuuuuooooooooom!, vibrating with the enjoyment of being a red car, which goes fast, faster than other cars, go car go. But before we could meet again at the next light, from behind me I heard another parummmmmmm. I looked in my mirror and lo, it was an orange motorcycle. The motorcycle eased into the left lane, behind Mr. Red Car, and we stopped at the next red light; Mr. Red Car, Mr. Orange Motorcycle, and me.
Mr. Orange Motorcycle’s motorcycle was a Honda Shadow. It was a pretty bike. Mr. Orange Motorcycle wore clean motorcycle boots, a little nut-shell helmet (black), a tight black jacket, and tight blue jeans. He did not look at Mr. Red Car, or at me.
My car radio played Mumford and Sons. I changed the station. I found Blondie.
The light turned green and Mr. Orange Motorcycle revved up and headed for the right lane, in front of me. He and Mr. Red Car were neck and neck until Mr. Red Car, spotting a slow car in the lane ahead of him, made a very tight lane change and cut in front of Mr. Orange Motorcycle.
“Tsssk,” I said, my teeth clicking against my lollipop, “He’s not going to like that.” I decided I was rooting for Mr. Orange Motorcycle because even though some motorcycle drivers are awful, noise-polluting Harley fiends, many more are not. Plus, he was a better driver.
Mr. Orange Motorcycle sped up and ducked around Mr. Red Car, into the left lane, then back into the right. Mr. Red Car evidently decided that being in the left lane was more important than being first! and the two of them kept pace with each other until the next red light, and then to the next, and the next, until finally, in a bold move, Mr. Orange Motorcycle zoomed into the left lane in front of Mr. Red Car to get around a slow moving van, then scooted over two lanes and hit the highway entrance a good five cars ahead of Mr. Red Car.
I cheered. I admit it.
I opted not to follow them onto the highway just to see what would happen next. I crunched my lollipop and switched radio stations again, hoping I would find the Beastie Boys somewhere else.