The Uphill Slide

There is always something.

Lookee! Lookee!

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“I’ll buy you a Cadillac,” he said. “Why?

There sat one. The powerful big honking truck. Glinting grey. Polished and chromed. Decals clinging to the side window. Plates screwed on the front. A shark teeth? mouth biting the side. I said, “Lookee!” My daughter responded ‘Embarrassment’.

Mobile modern art. Stylin’. Like my purse or earrings talking softly. But this? Passionately screaming, “Lookee, lookee!” Like my braless college roommate in hot pants bouncing and swaying to the dining hall while I, the divergent, marching strapped in bra and jeans.

Apricot. Blue and White. Silver. Black. White. Bright blue. Red. The big honking truck. A man’s vehicle. Sexist? Just statistically male owners I judge. Or co-mingled with a car in a marriage of vehicle convenience. I like the big honking truck. The motion of grabbing the door and pulling my weight up and sliding my body into the seat. Roaring down the road above it all except for the tractor-trailer drivers who can still look into my lap. Bursting ahead of the pack. I want a big honking truck. But I want a car too. For the duality of life. The dichotomy of purpose. I’m a Gemini. I have two voices trying to drown each other out. Buy this! No, that!

One winter’s day I drove the big honking truck to work and parked in the small lot for all to see. And the men came out to admire as if I had won the lottery of the open road. The climb up curvy dirt mountain roads. The bumpy ride over rocks. The splash through mud and water. Pulling its weight. Carrying the burden. Fulfilling its promises. These men were big honking truck drivers too.

I’ll never buy the big honking truck unless I do win the lottery. It will be bright red or shiny black. And to park beside it? An older Jaguar. The car I’ve always yearned for. As much as I yearn for any vehicle. But this one with the cat lunging forward ready to overtake. I want it. No clue why. Is it genetic? Was I a cat running and clawing through a earlier life? I’ve never driven or ridden in one. So why, oh why? Some deep repressed memory linked to desire?

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