Thursday, December 02, 2010
Mornin' Musin': People In Cars Look Funny
I saw this gal the other day while I was running. (I've been running a bunch recently, so I've spent a lot of time outside of cars looking in.) She was hunched over her steering wheel, grimacing in this really weird way. I'm sure it was just a fleeting expression, but like those photographs that catch us at our worst moment, that was when I saw her, and this is how I remember her. (She was wearing one of those Mexican poncho hoodies that all the stoner kids wore back when I was in high school. I hadn't seen one of those in years.)
When you're not in a car, people in cars look funny. (Actually, when you're in a different car, they also look funny.) Why is that? Something about the psychology of those glass-'n'-metal moto-pods, the way they carve out space, the way the occupants look out onto the world but are not in the world, move through the world but are not of the world. Plus, we usually get our best look at people in cars when they're stuck in traffic, and traffic breeds a certain passive frustration that's pretty silly looking (particularly when seen in long rows, car after car of blanked-out grumpy occupants). Hmm.