Friday, April 01, 2005


Not many people are aware of the impressive list of features that came as standard on the mighty '94 Golf Cabriolet. Along with bucket seats, AM/FM stereo with cassette, electrically operated roof and digital clock, the car has a Focused Neural Receiver (FNR) peeping out from under the front bumper, linked to a little green phosphor readout screen in the instrument cluster, just next to the temperature gauge. You can even store the information as a Microsoft Word 4 document on a floppy disk and upload it later to your home computer. Those Germans think of everything.

It's this technology that allowed me to record, and now present, the thoughts of the driver of the car in front of me as I drove to work this morning.

Oh Sher-ry, our love, hoooolds on, hoooolds on... wait, what was that? Something just hit my windscreen. Crap! There's another one! What are they? Wait a moment, those are... drops of water!


Oh shit oh shit oh shit oh shit oh shit! Okay, come on, get a grip on yourself. You can't allow yourself to panic. Breathe deeply. That's it, slow deep breaths.

Okay, I can get through this. If I can stay calm and marshal every ounce of my driving skill, I can get through this. Think of the children. Who's going to look after them if I die? I don't want to die! Oh please, I so want to live!

No, no, I'm not allowed to panic. I WON'T panic. Somehow I'll get through this.

Just keep reminding yourself, it's not as bad as it could be, it's not as bad as it could be. I'm in a late model Honda with four wheel drive, traction control and ABS braking... that's got to count for something. I may actually make it to the end of the street alive.

Now, think back to driving school. What are you supposed to do when you have to drive in the...

No, come on, you have to face it. Say the word....

when you have to drive in the RAIN. What are you supposed to do when you have to drive in the rain.

That's better. I remember now. I have to slow down. What's the speed limit on this road? 70. Better go down to 60. No, wait, make it 50. And I want to turn right in about fifteen minutes, so I'd better stay in the right-hand lane. I know I'm supposed to stay left unless overtaking, but IT'S RAINING! Everyone knows water droplets falling out of the sky have the ability to make your forget where you were going and how to get there and the faces of your loved ones. I can't afford to take any risks!

Okay, okay, everything's under control. We're way under the speed limit, we're in the right lane, and we're still alive. That Golf behind me keeps flashing its lights, but he's probably just trying to warn me about the rain. It's in crises like these that we have to look out for each other.

I can do this. I really think I can do this.

Wait... I don't believe it... it's not possible. THE RAIN IS ACTUALLY GETTING HEAVIER! I'm gonna die I'm gonna die I'm gonna die I'm gonna die!

I may even have to switch my windscreen wipers up from 'Intermittent'.


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