Thursday, May 03, 2007

Kinda Feels To Me Like Someone’s Out To Get Me

Today I had a 3:45PM meeting at EMI Christian Music Group- my former employer. I had an appointment to talk about a few projects from one of my clients to a retailer that was in town for product pitches.

I have driven between my house and EMI for many, many years, and I have the timing down to a science. Most of my driving is this way. I know this reveals something about me that I probably shouldn’t, but I actually keep records of how long it takes me to drive certain places. I then average them and develop a mental record of these times. As I reread this I realize how insane I sound.

Back in the day before strict airline security, I could without fail walk onto a plane 5min before the doors closed. Walk into a lunch meeting just as the buzzer went off letting the group waiting know the table was ready. Walk into a meeting right as people were finding a seat and introducing themselves. I try to cram so much into each minute that each minute I have to cram is important. Crazy.

So as I set out to start my 23.5 minute journey from Leipers Fork TN to Brentwood TN and EMI CMG, I felt just fine. I was leaving a full 30 minutes before the meeting start time. Plenty of time to chit-chat with a few former staff and friends as I meandered through my old stomping grounds. Even enough time to grab a cup of HupkaBrew (that’s what we call the Starbucks ground coffee used to make a pot, only you put 2 or 3 bags in the filter holder instead of the normal 1 bag. Named affectionately after the lovely, gracious and hyper Cathy Hupka).

As always, I pulled out of the garage, rounded the house, and headed down our long 500 foot driveway. As I readied to pull out, a giant garbage truck was coming so I waited to pull out behind it. After I did I regretted not gunning it to get out in front of him. He practically crawled at 35MPH on the 45MPH road.

After a mile or so he slowed down to turn left. Finally! With him out of the way I could get to normal speed (about 50-60MPH). As we stopped and waited for oncoming traffic to get out of the way, and older lady came up to the stop sign where the truck was about to turn left. The trucker waved her on so he could make his turn easily. As he turned out of the way I got stuck behind grandma. We tootled along enjoying the scenery together. She slowed down every time she saw a cow or horse. When a hawk landed on a power line she practically came to a stop. I was about to scream.

We got to the main road (where 90% of traffic turns left or right), and fortunately she put her blinker on. I was headed straight. As I got through the intersection a school bus pulled out in front of me from a side road. Yep. 8 or 9 stops with the little stop sign and lights lighting up. An eternity later the bus turned right. A few miles later I hit a school zone (Grassland Middle School- 15MPH).

Turning onto Manley Rd provided a 50MPH zone and I gunned the car. Shortly after, I hit another school zone (Ingram Curry Academy- 20MPH), and then another (Scales Elementary- 20MPH). After finally getting through these, I came around a corner to see a nice man dressed in orange, holding out his hand at me, and a stop sign in the other. Lane closed. One side of traffic through at a time.

50 minutes total. 20 minutes late to the meeting. So much for my system.

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