Molly Hatchett’s Flirting with Disaster is blasting and I’m screaming down the interstate. All of the sudden a wall of red lights appears over the horizon. I slam on the brakes and hope the cars behind me see this in time too. I turn of the music and reach for the power window controls. Lean out and survey the scene. Motorists are getting out of their vehicles. Two men have climbed up on top of eighteen-wheeler delivering SUVs. A grill has been set up twenty yards ahead. How long has traffic been stopped?
Should I get out of the car? Would that be safe? Ice jingles in my 32 oz cup of unsweet tea as I take two rapid slurps. I’m not even thirsty. Is someone getting another grill setup? I see a group of folks playing catch with a football. Even further up it seems like a hacky sack circle has formed. Get back in your cars!
Two quick knocks are delivered on my window. An older man comes up asking if I know what’s going on. I don’t. He walks off. Two more ferocious slurps of tea. I shift in me seat trying to get comfortable. Fidget with the controls see if I can incline or recline. Who can get comfortable? What are those folks grilling? It smells like hamburgers. Did they forget to remove the wax paper dividers before they put them on?
Gerald comes back. That’s the older man from earlier. He shoves the rest of a hamburger in his mouth. I comment on his face paint job. He smiles. Apparently, he’s always liked tigers. A glob of ketchup and mustard mix threatens to land in my car. Gerald still isn’t sure why traffic has stopped, but he has learned some nifty hacky sack moves. I slurp more tea.
Scanning the radio, I can’t find any news about the traffic. Google Maps isn’t very helpful on this subject either. I rest my head on my steering wheel. I really need to use the bathroom. I wonder if I could walk to the next exit? I would go on the side of the road, but I would hate to disturb the impromptu picnics. Quit slurping tea already! This isn’t helping!
Are there any empty bottles in my car? Would anyone notice if I used one to help me out of this predicament? My car is parked between two larger cars. I’m sure they can see everything that I’m doing. No way to be discreet.
I found a blanket and a bottle. Crawling under the blanket I position myself with the bottle. Two knocks. It’s Gerald! Go away, Gerald! Stage fright sets in. GERALD! The knocking stops. Silence. Success. I sheepishly peak out of the blanket. The coast is clear. Horns start honking. Traffic is moving.