Ruminations of a Red Dirt Hussy

December 2, 2011

My GPS hates me

Filed under: Blogroll — Vadasmaker @ 10:06 pm

My GPS hates me. I’m not sure why, but I think it all started with a misunderstanding. Shortly after we purchased it, TBL and I were both in our home office, he at his end, and I at mine. I was deep in the zone—the writing zone, that place you hover when it’s going really, really well—typing, thinking, looking out the window. Hey. It’s all writing. Sometimes writing looks a lot like somebody just sitting and looking out the window. But I wasn’t. I know the difference. You’ll just have to trust me on this.

So, as I said, I was in the zone. I’m very sensitive to noises, though, and there was something on the periphery of my consciousness that was just about to distract me and, hence, piss me the hell off. I tried to burrow deeper into my good place, but I was still hearing it, this female voice which kept repeating the same thing over and over: “I weigh 200. I weigh 200.” Finally, I’d had it.

Slapping my desk, I spun my chair around to face TBL’s end of the office. “What are you listening to?” I demanded. “Who is that annoying woman? Why does she think anyone cares how much she weighs?”

He turned in his chair, and in his hands he held this—thing. A squarish thing with a screen a bit like a computer screen. “It’s the new GPS,” he said. “You can put any address in the world in it, and you won’t get lost all the time.”

“I don’t get lost all the time. And why does it keep saying ‘I weigh 200’? What does that have to do with getting lost? Not that I do.”

“It’s not saying ‘I weigh 200.’ It’s the model number—I-Way 200.”

“Well, make it stop.” Now I was peevish.

The relationship went downhill from there. I practiced driving around our small town with it and for some reason it just had me making left turns and more left turns and coming back to my own driveway. Apparently that happens when someone enters his or her own address into “Destination” while one is in one’s driveway. Not that that happened. I’m just saying.

A few weeks later I drove to Oklahoma City to speak at a fundraiser for a private school. The students all had developmental disabilities, and the school did a world of good.  The house where the event was held was huge, kind of a McMansion, but still. I had put the address in the GPS and found the place with no trouble.

Besides feeling pretty virtuous for speaking gratis, I was also feeling pretty good about getting from Tulsa to Oklahoma City—not just to the city limits, but to an actual place—without getting lost. Not that I do. People think that, but they’re just not very creative. I mean, they think that going from Point A to Point B is just a straight line. As if.

I left the swanky neighborhood about ten that night after entering my address into “Destination.” I came to a freeway on ramp. My GPS told me to turn right, but I could see the sign that pointed in the opposite direction and said Tulsa. What was I going to believe, my eyes or a $250 piece of electronica? Use common sense or blind faith?

I turned right. I drove and drove and drove some more. I seemed to be going west, but my sense of direction fails me when I’m around water. And there was probably a lake somewhere around there. I did know I was on Highway 40.

Finally, I saw a sign that said Yukon. Yukon? The smug voice of the GPS told me to exit. Good thing, because . . . well, because I was fixing to stop following directions, that’s what. I exited and followed the voice I was growing to hate, and pretty soon I came to I-44. Which is the highway I should have been on from the start. 44 East.

The stupid thing had brought me all the way to Yukon on I-40 West in order to meet I-44 West. Now it was after 11. I was nearly out of gas. It was 34 degrees and the wind was blowing. I didn’t find an open gas station till I got to Chandler. I had to pee. And it turned out that only the gas pumps were operational. The little convenience store was locked tight. Did I mention I had to pee?

Let my tale be a lesson to you. The tiny woman in your GPS is out to get you. Throw that thing in a box in the closet and buy a map.

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3 Comments »

  1. Carol, you don’t get lost, you take the scenic route. My grandmother taught me about the scenic route when I was very young (she often took it going from the school to the house, making a different turn each time). Of course, at 10PM there wasn’t much to see on the scenic route, but then that wasn’t YOUR choice. I think all GPS; hate women, that’s because we’re independent thinkers, and don’t always follow directions. Sometimes we don’t even listen to directions. Ms 200 is like the snotty high school girls making you think they’re your friends only to do something horrible to you once they have your grudging trust. She got you all the way to OKC, and your destination, she was sure you’d follow her directions to the middle of nowhere. ~Nita

    Like

    Comment by Nita — December 3, 2011 @ 7:20 am | Reply

    • I really have told my granddaughters we took the scenic route when I got lost going to walmart.

      Like

      Comment by vadasmaker — December 3, 2011 @ 1:10 pm | Reply

    • PS. Do you still come to Tulsa for toastmasters? I’d love to see you.

      Like

      Comment by vadasmaker — December 3, 2011 @ 1:11 pm | Reply


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