Wednesday, November 14, 2007


So I cut back to four shifts a week because my body can't take the physical pain of waitressing full-time and I'm driving more because the Chicago Transit Authority train line that I take is getting worse every week. These changes mean I'm not using my monthly CTA pass subscription enough to make it cost effective (it gives me unlimited rides for $75 a month), so I cancelled it.

Of course, a week and a half after cancelling it, I smashed the car. In fact, it was the day of my last post, November 3rd. I left for work at 2:30 pm, joined the extremely busy and congested Saturday afternoon roads going into downtown Chicago and never made it to the restaurant.

Was it because I was in a hurry? No. I leave plenty of time to drive to work and usually arrive 30 minutes early. In fact, I'm a total granny driver. On the highway, I don't like going faster than 55 miles an hour. On roads, I rarely inch up past the speed limit, I don't mind when people cut me off and I cruise calmly along while others frantically change lanes to shave a few minutes off their commute. I actually don't like changing lanes at all and will actually stay behind the slow-moving bus or wait behind the driver who's waiting to take a left turn. I'll just sit and sit or crawl along because I don't like changing lanes (it requires too much aggression) and I always have plenty of time.

So I put-putted along, with thousands of other cars, trying to reach downtown Chicago on a Saturday afternoon. I had just manuvered around a stalled car with its hazard lights on. I was glancing in the rearview mirror at it, thinking how much it must suck to be in that position -- and I was going maybe 25 miles an hour -- when I looked at the car immediately in front of me and saw that it had stopped. And I was still going 25 miles an hour.

Hitting the brakes slowed me a little, but the crash was enough to totally dent the front of my boyfriend's car, crack the transmission and drain all the fluid so that the car immediately lost its power steering. Un-drive-able. Then I became the car with the hazards flashing.

The SUV-jeep-car thing I hit showed no physical damage. Do you think I can tell you what kind of car I hit? I don't remember cars when I'm NOT in shock from a collision, so, no, I can't.

No injuries, a tow truck, about three thousand dollars of repairs, blah blah blah (we're fully covered so we don't have to pay the whole thing). And I'm through with driving. I'll just have to get used to the suckiness of the train and getting home at 2:00 a.m. It'll be my punishment for managing to get into a car accident at 25 miles an hour, even with my granny driving. I plan to pick up the car when it's repaired (I haven't even called to check on it. I don't care when I get it back), put it in the garage and go back to the sucky CTA.

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