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list 24: things to do while stuck in traffic

September 18, 2010


So there we were, mom and I, idling in a long line of traffic at the US-Canada border, after having spent a beautiful long weekend in Maine. We’d been driving for about 5 hours at this point, the gas tank was emptying, the bladders were filling, we were inching forward at a snail’s pace and we were losing it, people. You know what I mean, right? The point you reach when you grab the steering wheel and start bucking and yelling obscenities? Well, that was me and we needed some damage control.

There are many things one can do to keep one’s sanity while stuck in traffic:

  1. Freak out! A waste of energy, you might say, but sometimes quite necessary. To everyone else, it appears you are losing your shit, but you actually have a plan. You’ve seen toddlers cry themselves to sleep, right? Same concept. It’s genius, really. First freak out, then let the wave of serenity wash over you.
  2. Breathe. The effects are the same as number 1, with half the fun.
  3. Talk to the person in the next lane.
  4. Smile at your fellow victims of traffic. Remember, people are in an irritable state, so be prepared for a low return on your smiles and a few “What the hell are you smiling at?” looks.
  5. Plan this blog post.
  6. Read a book.
  7. Paint your toenails (if you have nail polish).
  8. Play cards (if you have cards).
  9. Have a picnic (we may not have thought of the cards and the nail polish, but by God, we have food).
  10. Get out and stretch your legs.
  11. Consider, every 10 minutes, changing lanes (because the other lane always seems to be going faster, doesn’t it?)
  12. Name your favorite things about the weekend and wish you were back there instead of IN THIS LONG LINE OF CARS (constitutes freaking out)
  13. Sing, scream, honk, make some noiiiiiise. Or sit quietly and be a master of Zen.
  14. Actually, I retract part of number 11. Please don’t honk for no apparent reason, no matter how gratifying it may feel. It’s rude, obnoxious and annoying and it sends the message “I am more important than everyone else”.
  15. Bop your head to the music.
  16. Work on your to-do list.
  17. Have a full blown existential crisis (time is on your side)
  18. Listen to the lyrics on the radio. Make sarcastic remarks. “Your soft, succulent so sweet and thin, that’s kind of like a vision upon your skin” and “Come with your positive emotion, love, making enjoyin’ …that’s for me to bust it’s like a girl and a boy.” Wait, did they just say that? That doesn’t even make sense (insert confused face). I can’t believe someone would lip synch to those lyrics, let alone write them.

But the funnest thing one can do while stuck in traffic? Pull out the camera and have yourself a silly photo shoot. Y’all know how much I love me a silly photo shoot.

The variants to this game are infinite and limited only by your imagination. An infinite possibility of expressions that can be made with the face to reflect an even more infinite array of emotions. We stuck to the basics; we didn’t want to overwhelm anyone. Don’t worry if your photos don’t come out THIS AMAZING the first time around. It takes practice.

Get mad. Traffic is no laughing matter. Show your displeasure with the situation.

Well I nevah… I am shocked!!! Mom actually looks a little petrified. But fear is an emotion too, so she is at least playing by the rules.

The name of the game is silly. Silly is the name of the game. Look at me, I took my glasses off… just to wear fake glasses. I mean, it doesn’t get more silly than that! Shit. Off. Hook.

Traffic make Tarzan sad.

The token kiss shot.

You would have had to have known my grams Caron to understand what is going on here. And even if you had, you still wouldn’t understand because I still don’t know how I managed to contort my lips into a turtle’s beak. But there’s this thing she used to do with her dentures that made her bottom teeth pop out. This is us attempting to…um… commemorate her. We failed miserably, further proving that she was a one-of-a-kind woman.

What the fuck?

What the fuck? Take 2. This time with a little more “what the”.

Yay! Traffic is fun. Isn’t traffic fun, mom? Crazy? Who’s going crazy? Not me. No way, no how! I’m just so pumped about this traffic. Oh! Look! We’ve advanced 5 feet. How super duper is that?

Please note that the silly photo shoot need not only apply to traffic situations. You can do it at a dinner party, in an elevator, at brunch. Sheer boredom is also an excellent reason to make faces. I encourage you to give it a shot. It’s not a miracle cure, it won’t part traffic or turn your car into a jet airplane, but it will make the time seem to go faster and you’ll create fun memories with your mom, husband, kids, friends, sisters, etc., in the process. Plus, you’ll have sweet shots for your facebook profile photo. Ahem.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. September 18, 2010 6:44 am

    LOL that last shot – your expression reminds me of my niece and her sweet silly self.

    hope you finally freaking got there!

  2. September 18, 2010 7:08 am

    Absolutely hilarious!!

  3. September 18, 2010 7:48 am

    SWOON. Oh how I love silly gorgeous faces first thing on a Saturday morning! I will so be thinking of this post next time I’m stuck in traffic. 🙂

  4. Alison permalink
    September 18, 2010 8:13 am

    Geez who are those silly women? 🙂

  5. Jennette permalink
    September 18, 2010 10:33 am

    Cute! How great that you can have fun with your mum! Awesome!

  6. September 18, 2010 11:08 am

    you goober. xoxo!

  7. September 18, 2010 11:31 am

    I love that your mom was equally uninhibited. 😀

    And #7 works in multiple ways if you keep the windows shut.

  8. September 19, 2010 9:57 am

    these photos are great! i’m so glad that your mom is willing to be such a goofball–it’s wonderful!

  9. Karen permalink
    September 25, 2010 5:45 am

    Loving your Brooklyn hoodie! =)

  10. September 27, 2010 12:07 am

    this was so cute! i wish i had family members so willing to make faces at my camera. 🙂

  11. September 28, 2010 1:25 pm

    now i can’t wait to be stuck in traffic with you.

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