Sep 23, 2017

Kristen Stewart's New Car and Other Modes of Transportation

For the last several months I have been commuting to my job in downtown Boston via public transportation. It takes nearly an hour both ways, going to work and getting back home, making my work day at least eleven hours, often more like twelve. It’s ironic because I can see the skyscrapers of Boston from the end of my street. I can see downtown Boston, where I work, from where I live!
This last week has been the worst. School started and commutes of approximately thirty minutes have turned into over an hour. I can honestly say that sitting in a stationary bus on one of those elevated high-way loops might be one of the most agonizing experience of my life, and I relive it daily. I could probably get somewhere faster by riding a Ferris wheel.
Every single day I think to myself, I need to unlock the secret of teleportation, which I tragically can’t do, since I have no free time because I am so busy commuting.  I used to have this obsession with getting a car but now I have an obsession with apparating. I’ve realized that my dissatisfaction with known ways of transportation is not new. Looking back over the long years of my short life there have been several instances in which I unconsciously attempted to push the boundaries of the basic methods of leaving one place and going somewhere else.
There was that time I drank most of a bottle of champagne. I’m not really sure what exactly the purpose of that night was, I just remember being in a hideously neglected and dingy farmhouse on the edge of campus and a kitten. And that I apparently pissed off someone, but I don’t think I even knew them anyway.
At some point it had sprinkled and it was also really hot out.
I ended up lying down in the middle of a damp road, rolling home, but mostly just lying there. I  had suddenly realized there was this super effective and completely unexplored mode of transportation that involved lying on the ground and I was completely sure I could get home by doing this.  I had the power. The power to roll, instead of walk.
I didn’t get very far because my friend kept trying to get me to stand up by pulling on my arms. Then a cop car suddenly coasted alongside us and was like, “MISS DO YOU NEED AN AMBULANCE?” And my friend started hissing at me, “Omigod, PARISA! GET. UP. NOW.” while I think her boyfriend said to the cops, “Don’t worry, she’s like this normally too.”
And I think I declared with authority, “All quiet on the western front, officers! Carry on!”
And they were like, “…Oh, she’s conscious,” as if disappointed.
And I sprung from the ground (I assume I sprung, I was just suddenly standing) and went skipping off into the darkness, my friend shouting after me, and her boyfriend shouting after her.
Then the other night I had a dream that I was driving a car with no steering wheel.  
I had been a passenger in the car while Kristen Stewart drove but then she did a horrible job parallel parking, so I told her to switch with me and I’d re-parallel park it.
And she had been like, “Are you sure you can drive it? It’s a new car.”
And I was like, “Totally, I’m totally sure I can drive it, I’ve been in new cars before.”
And she was like, “It’s a new car.”
And I think I just said back, “I can at least parallel park it better than you did.”
And I got in the driver’s seat and promptly noticed there was no steering wheel.  I heard Kristen Stewart say again, in a little walkie-talkie ghost voice, “It’s a new car,” and I thought, Ohhh, it’s not a new car, it’s a new car! And then suddenly the car was whizzing off, not parallel parking, just zooming forward and there was a turn coming up and I was like, oh god, cars need steering wheels. Then I wondered, am I in control right now? I can’t tell.  Somehow I made the turn just by thinking really hard about it, and suddenly my confidence soared and I was like, Hey this isn’t so bad! I have no idea where I’m going or how precisely this car works, but I feel like maybe I’ve got a handle on this, at least figuratively if not physically… since there is no steering wheel to hold on to… Then on a related note, I realized I had no idea how to go in reverse. How was I going to do a better job parallel parking (assuming I managed to get back to where I had left Kristen Stewart) if I couldn’t go in reverse?
I looked around the dashboard and center console area, and there was no detectable reverse setting, and it occurred to me that maybe Kristen Stewart couldn’t find reverse either, that’s why she did such a horrible job parallel parking.  The car was only making right turns taking me somewhere.  I pictured Kristen Stewart, back on the sidewalk, watching me drive off uncontrollably.
You know, people don’t give that woman enough credit.
I woke up on my back, diagonally in bed, with my head hanging over the left side, and realized that the calming feel of inertia, of being pressed against a car seat, had actually just been my head hanging off the side of the bed, and my neck kind of hurt.  
What did we learn from this? That even if it looks like Kristen Stewart isn’t doing something the way we think it should be done, that doesn’t mean that any of us could do it better.   I think I can also say with certainty that the car with no steering wheel will not be an economic success.  Additionally, I have remembered a mild obsession I had with mopeds, which I should perhaps revive and re-examine. The other week, there was a shooting on the Boston Common around seven pm and the shooters apparently got away on mopeds. It says something positive about mopeds that the shooters managed to get away in the middle of rush hour traffic. I wonder what kind of mopeds they had and if they were the classic 50cc engines or if they had been souped up to go more than 31 miles per hour.  
And now here is a police report from my town mentioning a moped:

Sept. 17, 12 p.m.: A man crossed Arsenal Street near the Arsenal Mall against the light and while doing so a person approached on a moped. The men exchanged words and the man crossing the street was punched by the man on the moped. He suffered only minor injuries. Police looked around the area but could not locate the man on the moped. The man who was punched did not want to seek charges.”