Red Light, Road Rage
Red lights are like people; I fucking hate them. They’re always in the way, interrupting my forward progress; and more times than I can count, almost caused me to piss myself. The only redeeming quality they hold that puts them one notch above humans is the fact they can’t speak.
I know it’s egocentric to believe I’m the only person on earth who gets stuck at traffic lights, but I swear I hold some sort of modern Egyptian curse which ensures I hit every red light between my starting point and hell. I felt that I hit an unfair amount of red lights so much so, that for 45 days, I recorded every single light I came upon, and whether it was red or green. Most of you are probably looking at me with the same expression that I received from anyone else I told beforehand. It’s most likely a mixture of confusion, ‘are you fucking serious’, and more confusion…as in: “Why the fuck would you want to do that, idiot. That’s a huge waste of time. You’re beyond retarded and you’re literally too stupid to insult.”
I can’t say that I would argue, however, I felt some strange and strong compulsion to do it anyway; much like crying during sex or insulting every vegan I meet (seriously, it’s like freaking Tourettes when I’m around them).
So July 14, 2011 I decided to start keeping track. This was decidedly more difficult than I originally anticipated. For one, I’m left handed and because I live in America, only my right hand was available to put pen to the paper sitting on my center console.
Second, making any sort of legible mark what-so-ever while driving is both difficult and dangerous. My notepad looked more like a 4 year old with Parkinson’s was taking the data.
Third, I had to come up with a system of recording these lights that was both efficient and safe. Hash marks represented green lights (made sense to do the easiest marks for greens due to the fact I was still…you know, driving); and plus signs represented reds.
Finally, I had to create a set of guidelines:
a.) No matter how many cycles the light went through, it was still counted as only one light.
b.) Lights would only be tracked when I was the driver.
c.) For it to be considered a red light, I had to come to a complete stop (even if the light had changed to green).
Over the next 45 days, I created an excel spread sheet, calculating totals and averages for a wide variety of mind-bogglingly stupid statistics; I became entirely obsessed with the process and it had a strange affect on me…I began hoping for red lights. Every red light I stopped at was further proof that God hated me and wanted nothing more than to simply fuck with Grayson Jack; to make him late for everything. For once, I was going to have the proof needed to show everyone that I wasn’t crazy and that I really did happen upon every single red light…and we all know how well it goes over when the insane try to convince the masses that they are indeed, not insane and that there really is a conspiracy against them…
Can anyone guess what the results looked like? Logic dictates there’s pretty much a 50/50 chance of either red or green and the stats should reflect a fairly evenly-distributed representation of that. It also must be noted that I did not take into account variables such as rush hour, which could have had possible influences on light frequency.
1,839 – 45 day total (red/green)
1,035 – 45 day total (green)
804 – 45 day total (red)
That’s right, less than half my lights were red; as a matter of fact, only 43.7% were red. But that didn’t deter me; because that too was further proof God was just fucking with me. He wanted everyone to think I was crazy! God was playing mind games with me; so you see?! It’s obvious; God is jacking with me, right? Guys?! I’m not crazy! Really…I’m not!