So, there I was innocently driving home from work just like any other Friday when I noticed everyone in my lane was merging over. This is peculiar behavior so I started looking for construction signs or the cop car when the car directly in front of me merged and I saw the car half a block ahead with their caution lights on driving really slow.
Now, this isn’t an unusual occurrence on my drive home because I travel through a poor part of town where cars often break down and are driven very slowly with caution lights on so I didn’t think much of it other than a moment of “Wow, that sucks” as I merged over and continued on my way.
As I neared the car with the caution lights I noticed the smoke immediately. The whole front end was covered in it and again I had a moment of “That really, really sucks” as I pulled up alongside the slow-moving vehicle. And that’s when I saw it…the car was ON FIRE!
This guy is driving down the road with his tire at a 45 degree angle, the friction sending sparks and flames out of his wheel well as he drives at a snail’s pace down the road with his car covered in smoke, windows down, smoking a cigarette.
I guess if my car was literally on fire I’d probably want a final cigarette too.
Then, the light changes and we’re stopped. And here I am sitting next to this truck with it’s tire ON FIRE driven by a guy who clearly has zero fucks to give and we’re sitting here waiting for the light to change and I can’t take my eyes off of the flames licking out of the tire just waiting for it to catch the engine on fire and explode, taking me with it.
When the light changed and we started inching forward I waited for the guy with his tire on fire, at a 45 degree angle, to pull into the closest parking lot but no, he just kept in the flow of traffic and AGAIN I’m stuck sitting next to him at the light. This dude is legitimately just driving down the road with his car on fire and he honestly doesn’t seem the least bit concerned.
Meanwhile my chest is in knots as I fight back panic, wondering how much a ticket for running a red light is and if I got pulled over the cop would be understanding of me not wanting to sit next a car with real, actual flames shooting from the tire like some sort of bad Fast and the Furious effect.
In the end, mostly because I’m super broke right now and can’t afford to risk a ticket or another car accident, I sat there fighting back a panic attack until the light changed and I gunned it down the road to get away from that guy.
Once I was safely away and finally convinced myself I wasn’t going to die in some ridiculous and horrific fiery explosion I realized that dude is my new life goals. He’s clearly got some awesome calm going on to be able to drive a smokey, fiery car down a busy road at rush hour and not appear to give a single fuck about it. That’s the level of Zen I need to aspire to.