A Side Benefit of Car Culture

So I’m driving in my car yesterday, and I have the radio on Joe, Jack, Jed, Jeb, Jason, Javon, Jograj–one of the “J” FM stations. A song comes on that I don’t care for, so I change it to another station. It’s Edmonton, so it’s gonna be a modern/classic rock station that I turn to. Anyway, I’m listening to the new station for a minute or so, and I’m at a red light, when another car pulls up to my left. I look over, and I see that the girl in the car is staring straight ahead, mouthing some words. She doesn’t have one of those grotesque cell phone clips attached to her ear, so the conclusion I make is that she’s singing along to something. And my interest has now been piqued. She’s either singing along to music she brought with her–cassette, eight-track, cd, mp3, mind–or she’s singing to a song on the radio. And if it’s the radio she’s grooving along to…oh yeah, it’s game time.

Am I the only person who likes to figure out what other people are listening to in their vehicles? The only one who will flick through all the radio stations trying to synch up the song with the singing? Or just try and read the lips of the person, and guess from that? I can’t be. It has to be a common urban experience, right, along with the license plate game and I Spy? Right? Well, as anyone else who plays this game knows, the sing-a-long game can be a difficult game to play, as you need to keep pace with the other vehicle, stay on the same road as the other vehicle, and be able to stare at the other vehicle without crashing your own car or alerting the other driver that you are leering at them. Fortunately for me, in this instance, I didn’t need a lot of time. I did a quick evaluation of the vehicle, and the girl, and headed straight back to “J” FM. Sure enough, I’d connected the dots. On the first try. Bam. Hit it, girl!

“Cause the love that you gave that we made
Wasn’t able to make it enough for you
To be open wide, no
And every time you speak her name
Does she know how you told me
You’d hold me until you died
Till you died
But you’re still alive”

Yessssss. She was singing along to Alanis Morisette’s “You Oughta Know.” The song I’d previously changed the station because of. But the thing I liked about this girl was that she wasn’t rocking out to the song. She wasn’t screaming, or yelling, as the song pretty much demands. She was calm and composed. Aware, probably, that she was in a public space, even within the confines of her personal Saturn. Therefore, matter-of-fact. I liked that.

Unfortunately, I’d missed seeing the girl sing the lines, “is she perverted like me, would she go down on you in a theatre?” but I was satisfied nonetheless. I’d scored a quick victory, the girl was obviously happy with her song, and I was happy to see her happy. Win-win-win.

The End.

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