Easy and Elegant Life

The Search for Everyday Elegance and the Art of Living Well.

All the Rage

Linus Larrabee and Fairchild from \"Sabrina\"

Do you think it’s the heat or that gasoline is hovering around UDS$4.00 a gallon? Or maybe it’s the angry music that most drivers like to blare from custom speakers?

Drivers these days seem more and more on edge and less and less forgiving. That we even have the term “road rage” is unsettling at best. That Walt Disney and company identified the disease in the 1940’s is upsetting. Remember the short with Goofy turning into a horned demon whenever he got behind the wheel?

Now I like to drive my little sports sedan with the best of them. And, in a pinch, I’ve been known to use the torque and the sixth gear to merge into heavy traffic. I’m working on my downshifting even now. But I like the idea of “motoring.” Whatever happened to the idea of motoring?

Or better yet, where is Fairchild when I need him? Ah yes, driving Linus Larrabee in the screen capture above from “Sabrina.”

I’ve said it before, I’ll know that I’ve made it when I have a car and driver at my disposal. That’s living, er….Big time.

But until that august day, I’ll try and remember a few of the rules of the road.

Things like “right of way” and “yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks,” especially in 100ºF weather or downpours; and even more so since I am in an air-conditioned-leather-and-surround-sound-appointed vehicle. I don’t tailgate or cut people off; I am rarely in a rush.

How much more elegant would you feel leaving a little earlier or later (schedule permitting) to avoid the last minute rushhour? Imagine arriving at your destination unflushed, unflustered, relaxed and in plenty of time. It is easy to be enraged, but far less elegant than maintaining your composure when all those around you are losing theirs. Strolling, or its automotive equivalent, through life allows you to enjoy it that much more. When at all possible, I like to leave the driving, and parking — my bête noir — to someone else. If not, well that’s me in the right lane you’re passing, humming along to a little Vivaldi or Guaraldi, waving a thank you for letting me merge.

But in my Walter Mitty moments I’m still here:
“Topocata-pocata-pocata went the ancient Bentley’s engine…”

Linue Larabee and Fairchild take the long way home.

7 thoughts on “All the Rage

  1. I suppose I am guilty of a bit of rage myself on occasion. You’ve helped me relax already. When my daughter is with me in the car, she does have to remind me to “find my ‘happy place'”.

  2. Hello katiedid, it can get the best of us. I really think that a little light classical music goes a long way. Thanks to the iPod, I can completely sound design my environment. There’s a Father’s Day gift: a stereo system in the car that is iPod ready!!!!!

  3. ”Motoring is such a lovely word. But one can indulge in it only with a driver to take the wheel, whose thoughtfully allows one to relax à la Mr Larrabee and take in the passing sights.

  4. Relax! (as my 2 year old son often advises) What’s the hurry anyway? Drive the speed limit. Use your turn signal. Acknowledge those that allow you to merge with a kind wave. If someone directs road rage towards you either ignore them or shrug your shoulders and give them a sheepish “oops … my bad” look. Always take the high road, so to speak.

  5. Agreed Aesthete. A lovely sight, those ancient sites. I’ve always thought that a slow ride in a vintage convertible would do the trick as well. But that’s brought on by too many episodes of “The Avengers.”

    Douglas, I wish I’d thought of that for a title for the post: “Always take the High Road.” Great advice.

  6. I never used to understand why new mothers sat in the back with the child. Now, with a two month old I completely understand. And oddly, it’s a riot having my husband ‘chauffeur” us around. Of course, his name also happens to be James, so there’s the requisite “Home, James” that I seem unable to suppress at least once during the outing.

    I tend to be an aggressive drive. Not angry, just aggressive. So the change of pace is a welcome one. And even though I love to be in charge, the remarkable benefit is just how relaxing it is to be ferried about. I agree, I’ll know we’ve made it when we’ve got a car waiting for us.

    We’ll have made it (as you say) Big time 🙂

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