Contemporary Collision

Contemporary Collision

I wrote this in 1988.  If I had written it today I might have noticed different “soldiers” in light of recent events.


It’s anyday, rush hour, heading down Loop 1.

Brake lights ahead. Traffic jam hour. Time to look around.

To the left, a brown Camaro, power car, with curly brown, shoulder-length hair in calculated disarray, bright gold from each ear.

An Alfa Romeo follows, blond with bright blue sunglasses.

Next a Jaguar, with a turquoise headband and bright red lipstick.

An RX7, a 300Z Turbo – little bundles of perfumed power.

And me in my shell of tinted windows, my armor, looking at the other soldierettes of the business world.

We wait for the confrontation ahead to be resolved, so we can get on with our own battles. Battles against time, money, uncertainty.

I wonder – does my camouflage cover me well, keeping up the power image that I project but don’t always feel? Can they see how vulnerable I am in my little battleship?

I look again. An older model Delta 88, with close-cropped silver hair.

Another Camaro, red this time, with a freshly shaven face.

A black RX7, with short sideburns.

The soldiers aren’t any different….are they?

The brake lights go off ahead. We begin to move, past the crumbled, jumbled metal.

One man, one woman. Neither won the battle.

We all march forward in an orderly fashion.

Traffic begins to flow.