Friday, February 10, 2012

Not Your Grandma's Jam

Last Saturday, shortly after sunset, I pointed my car in the direction of Older Daughter's house. She'd gone out of town, and I'd promised to feed, water, and walk her pets. (Hubs was at a hockey game downtown.) As I zoomed along I-10 heading east, a Texas Department of Transportation sign overhead blinked into life to spell out, "Monster Jam I-10 to 610 South."

A jam so big "monster" describes it? OMG! I'll be stuck in the mother of all bottlenecks, and daughter's dog will be trapped in the house and desperate to relieve itself. (I had to keep my foot on the gas pedal; otherwise, I'd have crossed my legs in sympathy.)

Two cars angled across three or four lanes of traffic to exit at Beltway 8, but that's the "Whoops, almost missed my exit," behavior Houston parents teach driver-permit-carrying kids to respond to without spilling their supersized Cokes. In other words, nothing out of the ordinary.

My fellow drivers continued their forward momentum. Had they missed the sign? Heard something on the radio that assured them the jam would be cleared by the time we reached 610? Maybe they'd vowed not to exit the highway until they saw a sea of brake lights ahead.

Since the snafu was south of I-10 on 610, I had a chance of avoiding it by moving my bitty car into the far left lane—the lane of choice for pickup trucks and SUV's. No one shot me the bird—comforting. I increased my speed to keep up with the big boys—rattling.

To make an over-long story short, I sailed past 610, and the drivers exiting there barely tapped their brakes. Huh? The monster had dissipated.

If it had ever existed.

I fed daughter's animals and walked her dog. Then I texted Hubs: "Did u get stuck in monster jam on way to Toyota Center?"

He wrote back: "Monster Jam truck show at Reliant Stadium. That what u mean?"

Well, shoot.

I Googled Monster Jam the next day. In Houston, Wolverine defeated Gravedigger the Legend. Bold

Good to know.

Readers: August McLaughlin has organized a blogfest around the theme "The Beauty of a Woman." The posts are inspiring and heartfelt. (And there are prizes!) You'll see links to them at August's site, but I'd like to call your attention to Kara Flathouse's letter to her daughters. (Why, yes, I'm the mama of girls. ) Also, Tim O'Brien's posted this clip of Texas' own Ruthie Foster:

You'll find something that speaks to you among the blogfest's many posts. Happy reading.


Coleen Patrick said...

Monster Jam truck show, well that would do it. Now I've got the Gravedigger trademark howl in my head--the one they play over and over on the radio ads.
Monster Jam in my head.

Lark Howard said...

Confession: I've been to a Monster Jam and kind of liked it. A bit noisy, though.

Thanks for the links, Pat. I'll visit them this afternoon as a treat to myself.

August said...

Ah, traffic. It's most people's part time job in LA. ;) Thanks for the fun post and the wonderful shout out!

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

Sorry about the Monster Jam in your head, Coleen. Sorry, too, about accidentally revealing which contestant got sent home from Top Chef last week. You won't get this week's results out of me, not even if you come after me in a 1500hp truck.

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

You are full of surprises, Lark.

Happy reading. The Beauty of a Woman blogfest's amazing.

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

Thanks for stopping by on a super-busy day for you, August. I love The Beauty of a Woman posts I've read so far and can't wait to read the rest. What an important thing you've done.

Lynette M Burrows said...

Too funny! And they think those signs are helpful! I have also been to a Monster Jam. Not just noisy - lots of fumes, too.

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

The signs must be helpful to some, Lynette because the Monster Jam in Houston reportedly sold out. Since two out of four comments have come from people who've been to a Monster Jam, clearly I have to go. Thanks, though, for the warning about the fumes.

Karen McFarland said...

Pat you are so funny! I could see myself making the same mistake. But I like the sound of the Monster Jam truck show a lot better than a monster jam on the freeway. LOL! What I want to know is, did you get to the dog in time so the poor thing was able to relieve itself? :)

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

I got to the dog in time, Karen, because the traffic jam existed only in my imagination. Can you believe how clueless I was about Monster Jam? Now I am dying to see one. Remind you of anyone you know?