Monday, January 4, 2010

I let my anger get the best of me today.

I was just driving home from meeting my dad for lunch, and on the final stretch home, something came over me. I felt it like a swift wave of rage just pouring over me, and for the first time in my life, I did not try to restrict it. I just let it happen. And not in the "I didn't know what was going on" sense. I knew what was happening, and I consciously allowed myself to be temporarily consumed in the emotion. It was horrifying, but exhilarating.

Anyway, as a result of this anger, I decided to drive my car as fast as I could. So the accelerator was pushed straight to the floor under the influence of my right foot, aided by the weight of my heavy leather dress shoes. I felt my body pressed back into the seat, and my neck muscles straining ever so slightly to maintain my head's position in the vehicle. The engine began to whine, and the hard plastic of the gear shift in my hand began to vibrate a little too hard. My left foot automatically dropped the clutch pedal down to the floor, as my right hand shifted to third. My left leg rushed back up towards the steering column, with the clutch pedal in rapid pursuit. I imagined the force of the clutch slamming against the engine under the hood, but my right foot was ready, already pinning the accelerator down to the floor. The car lurched ever so slightly, and rocketed forward.

Success. I've done a million times, but am still fully aware of the process. My mind abstracts no part of it.

The car gains speed.

I shift to fourth gear...

Fifth gear...

Hold in fifth gear...


Third gear. The engine screams in agony, but obeys nonetheless. The car leaps forward so violently that the Chemical Brothers track blaring out of my stereo skips as the CD is jarred from it's proper place. Needles all over the dashboard jump wildly, but I don't see them. I haven't looked at the dash since I took my seat in the vehicle twenty minutes ago. I feel the car's velocity top out and I shift back to fifth. The engine quiets a bit and my speed levels out. I feel the blood rushing ever so slightly in my temples, and notice my vision just barely blur in my peripherals. I see everything around me. Judging by the trees and fences whipping past, I must be going somewhere between 80 and 90 miles per hour. I come up to a bend, slowing a bit. A UPS truck parked in the street comes into view about 300 feet away. My left leg drops the clutch as my right foot jumps to the brake and depresses it gradually, but urgently. I slowly come to a near halt behind the truck as the driver returns to his seat and continues his route.

I drove the rest of the way home at a moderate speed, feeling relieved at having gotten some of that out of my system but knowing that it needs to not happen again. At least not unpredicted like that.


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