Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Ballet

It was Monday morning and I was waiting at the top of a hill for the light to change. Before me lay the 520 and the various streets that intersected it. As I gazed at the ebb and flow of cars, my thoughts shifted from the three bowls of Lucky Charms and piece of raw bacon I had for breakfast to the vast, intricate dance that unfolded before me.

It was like a ballet.

Cars in a myriad of colors slowed and sped, their steel bodies sliding soundlessly, almost surreptitiously, and some other ‘S’ word, betwixt each other. They bobbed and weaved around corners and through lights of every color, like color-blind boxers on LSD trying to land a blow, but never quite hitting the hallucination in front of them. Their engines revved and sputtered, their horns honked and, er, didn’t. A distant stereo’s bass could be felt through the pedals and in my teeth, surely loosening my fillings.

It was amazing. Scores of drivers in hundreds of cars each did their part to ensure that the ballet – for it was a dance – continued unabated. It was a dance of fumes, honking, swearing, and middle fingers, but a dance nonetheless. My heart swelled at the sight or possibly because of the Coke I drank to wash down the bacon and I briefly lost all feeling in my hands and little sparks shot across my eyes. A handful of Sweet Tarts brought me back, coughing and sputtering, not unlike the ancient pickup next to me.

There was a sudden screech to my right and I instinctively turned the radio up, as there was a song I really liked on. After the screech came a crash, followed by the clashing of horns, as trombones spilled from the back of the truck that had rear-ended the Honda in front of it. It seemed odd for the truck to be carrying trombones unsecured, but there you go.

I nodded in satisfaction. The dance had surprised me, showing its intricacies and invention, as if the prima ballerina in Swan Lake had suddenly turned and knifed the guy who was supposed to hoist her in the air.

Yes, I would totally go to that ballet.

My vision blurred a bit. Maybe I shouldn’t have put extra sugar on that third bowl. The cars honking and the voices yelling behind me snapped me back, letting me know that the light had been green for a while.

I shifted, missed 1st completely and hit 3rd, but managed to get my truck going anyway.

I joined the dance.



Buzzcook said...

Don't you have something to look forward to when they build the new 520 bridge. With or without light rail you'll have lots more time for the dance.

Mom says you should ride the bus.

Jason Janicki said...

Huh, Buzzcook's a local :) I don't actually cross the 520 bridge. I'm in Redmond and I work in Bellevue, so no need.

Yeah, I probably should.

"gunner" said...

the cart reference: "the black plague" in medieval europe. "bring out your dead".