Lately I’ve been doing lots of driving. Actually “lots” is an understatement. You wouldn’t believe how much driving I’ve been doing. Let’s just say that if I leased a car I might go over the mileage allotment in a week.
OK, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But I’m not exaggerating when I describe the two guys I saw driving this morning on Interstate 287 in northern New Jersey. One guy was reading a newspaper as he cruised along in the middle lane at about 60 miles per hour. He had the paper propped up in front of him on the steering wheel. The other guy actually had what appeared to be a financial ledger book opened in front of him, also propped against the steering wheel while he was speeding along at about 70 mph.
I was going to include with this post a video of Jan and Dean singing their 1964 classic “Dead Man’s Curve.” But that would be too creepy.
I’m hitting the road again in about an hour. I don’t need any bad karma. But I do need a car song. . “Little Red Corvette” by Prince? “Drive My Car” by The Beatles? “Drive” by the Cars? “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman? Early Beach Boys?
No, how about something that fits this rainy night? How about Tom Waits singing his song “Ol’ ’55?” It has nothing to do with dangerous drivers. But at least it’s about a car, right? Right? Or is it…could it be…about love…about driving in your car…and you’re not reading a newspaper or a financial ledger book…and you’ve just been with the woman you truly love and you’re wishing you could have stayed longer…yes, I think that’s what Tom Waits is singing about…and I think I’ll think about that as I drive up the highway one more time tonight with melancholy love songs playing in my head as the wipers keep the rhythm as I drive through the darkest darkness in what seems like never-ending rain.