The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


The truth as I see it

The iron lance in my pocket

I’m not saying video games mean a thing in real life, but would you trust your life to a driver after they admitted they had never, ever beaten stage one of “Frogger?”

I would not, but from the looks of the drivers in Dallas, I’d say half of D-Town would fail the “Frogger” test.

Nowadays kids age 16 or less have no experience with “Frogger.” It’s been replaced by online videos based on fart jokes and comical bear attacks. Nowhere do the kids of the younger generation challenge something as simple as moving a frog across a busy intersection.

Another thing that bothers me are the convenience store signs that instruct children not to purchase any dangerous garbage – be it tobacco, pornography or booze if they are really ballsy.

1989. That’s when the 18 year olds of today were born. I think they actually missed out on the first Nintendo. Can you imagine anything quite so awful? There are actually human beings at this very school who have never played “Contra” or shot down a Slip’n’Slide. Absolute tragedy.

But what bothers me most are the old dirtbags who run this community. Not just SMU, but the general universe, extending to Dallas and outward from Texas to around the world. The worst and most cowardly Satanist on the face of the earth has got to be the engineers who decide when traffic lights turn green or red.

No man has ever witnessed a tragedy so painful as when all the lights are timed perfectly except for the one at that random intersection in the middle of the drive. In some sick display of power and idiocy, a man at the numbers table decided to tweak the data so that my legal commute home now takes an extra six minutes, forcing me to fight the demon in my head telling me to run the damn thing.

I’ve got a few of these little habits on my post-class drive. Some days, when my timing is perfect, I roll off the highway and encounter a whole slew of green lights before I have the personal jury decision at Live Oak and Pearl. If I’m lucky I slash through the yellow light to glide gracefully home in a cloud of smug self-endowment.

You really need to justify running a red light. The only light I personally, almost unconditionally do not stop for is at the aforementioned Live Oak and Pearl intersection. You see, the only strip of pavement that justifies the signal is the exit from US-75. For the uneducated, this strip of land has been closed for three months due to construction, during which time I have passed at all hours of the day and have yet to see a single pair of hands or machines working to improve the thing. It’s an exit ramp, well lit with smooth pavement. There was no construction needed until the signs went up and someone ripped up a horizontal strip one-foot wide to make any blockade-running commuter a smoking wreck on a pylon. Seriously, the Live Oak exit could be fixed in one night with $300 in cheap labor and two bags of concrete. But that closed lane is no reason not to keep the light working, I mean, hell, every ticket is one step closer in Officer Veeser’s quest to win that coffee maker. So “No Turn On Red my ass,” it’s time to go.

Some people like to play morality police. Other human beings are so vindictive that they will follow you six blocks to the farmer’s market and right up to a peach stand just let you know that “You’re a bastard.” Fresh peaches are both delicious and affordable.

But driving is fun. Sometimes it’s the green light lottery, and for a whole day, every lights turns green right on time. Then, usually when you are in a hurry, the black phantom hangs around you, switching lights and depending on karma, providing a police escort that mysteriously follows you everywhere until you are freaking out and about to cry. That’s right when he pulls over the guy in front of you. After changing pants, the journey may continue but then you are late and nobody truly forgives an affront like that.

Most drivers think of the police in about the same way a harbor seal regards a great white shark. Despite the balance they bring to the ecosystem, it’s still one heck of a mess to deal with them yourself.

In my experience, dealing with police is one of the most unpleasantly polite interactions on the face of the earth. You are dealing with a man in a position of power who has spent his whole day being lied to. It doesn’t matter if you really did signal, if that cop suspects you of being a jerk, you’re going to get a ticket.

Anyone can beat the police.

Two weeks ago I was driving near a construction site, and there, in the middle of the road, was a police officer directing traffic with her baton. As soon as I turned the corner she was staring at me through her Ray-Bans. Her hands, at her belt, twitched. I could almost taste her hand extended toward me in the “whoa” maneuver.

But I was determined. I was not going to let this officer “whoa” me. I was going to be a perfect driver. So I watched the pattern of the other cars, timing my gap between my car and the one in front of me, perfectly. The officer of the peace focused on nothing else. I mean, she was guiding other cars, but her head whipped back every six seconds. “Oh,” she thought, “I can’t wait to put this silver Mercedes in its place: stopped at the palm of my hand as I mouth out, ‘Whoa.'”

And I crept forward, patiently. I rolled to my gap, she knew it at once and tried to psyche me out, to force me into a reckless position where she could “whoah” me. She shook her nightstick back and forth horizontally. Lesser men would have been confused and caught off guard but I held my ground. I waved my hand forwards and backward to demonstrate that “I am going forward and backward in my car” and gave her a look for emphasis.

She froze, confused. A civilian, prey, had been on her scent the whole time.

Les jeus sont faites. She waved me forward. Take that bacon and slice it hard. That’s how you win The Secret War.

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