A Dramatic Interpretation of Morning Traffic

13 Apr

It took me almost three hours to get to work this morning.

When I tell someone this in a passing conversation, the first thing they ask is “Was there an accident?”

This is a sensible question. Of course you’d think that sitting in bumper to bumper traffic for 45 minutes, only to slowly crawl up the exit ramp to sit in more traffic would mean that somewhere,  there is a REALLY BIG ACCIDENT.

For example, this is what I’m typically visualizing:

SCENE: Girl, 22, sits, nervously tapping her foot. She listens to the same song on rotation and unwraps her sixth piece of gum for the morning, anxiously peeking out the window of the bus. Beads of sweat begin to dot her brow when she realizes she is–once again–going to be late to work.


Mangled metal and shredded tires litter the center of the highway. An eighty-car pile up towers over the lines of traffic. The woman in the top car dangles precariously from the window, screaming “Save me!” over and over.

Suddenly, the bottom car explodes, sending the others precariously crashing to the ground in a huge explosion. Similar to the atomic bomb, the accident sends waves of panic through the traffic, which slows to a halt. A plume of thick black smoke erupts from the wreckage, and emergency crews rush to the scene, the sirens echoing in a desperate cry, EMTs carrying anyone they can find to safety.


The traffic is gridlocked, a slow and agonizing ripple that extends for miles. The passengers sigh in irritation–yet another eighty-car pile up to be cleared. But none of them know of the tragedy that occurred on the slick macadam as the sun rose to its morning brilliance. All they know is that it’s been a long day, and it’s only 9 am. Also, they are hungry.


But the reality is that there is no pile up. Not even a fender-bender. THERE IS NOTHING THIS DRAMATIC THAT IS RESPONSIBLE FOR HOLDING UP TRAFFIC. So someone please explain it to me, because that’s my only explanation for why it took me three hours to get into work. And since I’m forever explaining, I’m going to need a more believable excuse.

2 Responses to “A Dramatic Interpretation of Morning Traffic”


  1. I Promise I Have Not Fallen Off the Face of the Earth « Working Girl Smiling - June 9, 2011

    […] Been a victim of one of my commuting fantasies b. Quit my job and therefore have nothing else to share c. Gotten a new haircut and, too ashamed to […]

  2. 100 Posts–This is Big. « Working Girl Smiling - August 19, 2011

    […] time I was stuck in traffic. No, that other time. Yes, that […]

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