Light Post 59

Focus drove me around for several hours again today. Over bridges and through parking lots, we maneuvered endless circuits. Aimlessly.

For Focus does not plan, only motivates. Pushing tires over road surfaces, and I gaze through glass newly zoned as an insect cemetery, hoping to see newness or freestyle spaces. Only death and dry cleaners. Shopping blocks and drive-thruz.

They’re numbered, no less. Roadside light posts. Things you don’t learn in middle school. Numbered lightning. Are the numbers ordered? If Focus and I just blew by 58, what will come next? I have to know. Is there order in this car-dominated universe of streets and Asian-esque frozen yogurt shops?

In every town, is the number one light post erected outside some central building, like city hall or Old Navy? Circling outward from town square, will you unknowingly pass numbers two, three, four and so on in sequence? Or will it be willy-nilly 13, two, 58? The former tells me what’s to come. The latter leaves me hanging wide-eyed like a baby at the circus.

Focus doesn’t seem to care. Can’t count even. Odd how driving machines aren’t as smart as a Texas Instruments calculator but much more expensive and tend to run away with us. I’ve been carjacked by a car. Tooled around for hours, and now Focus is going to tour another shopping block parking lot instead of staying on target to see what number comes after 58.

This will not fly, Focus! Damn you if you turn now. The next light post is just ahead. No you’re not taking this left. Stay straight. The next light post is just there, its number almost visible.

I grab the steering wheel, pull hard back right-hand away from Game Crazy and Forever 21, back away from wasted hours of intersection indecision, U-turns, and triple-lane bypass boredom. Back, I command! Pulling hard right on the wheel again, the Focus now firmly in my hands, it careens across the main drive, up the curb, the sidewalk, and smash-bang into light post number 59.

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