I don’t text while driving (or ever) or use my cell phone in the car (unless I’m waiting for a slow freight train to pass). I don’t polish my nails, put on mascara, eat breakfast (except for an occasional granola bar), or read the newspaper while behind the wheel. But I’m guilty of distracted driving because…I THINK.
What do I think about? It can be anything, from wondering if the shoes I have on really go with these pants or if my darling grandsons liked their first day of school. Sometimes it’s as involved as figuring out how much I can earn if I roll over a CD at the going rate of…oh, about 0% interest (or just a tad above).
I’m not sure I could get myself to break this hazardous habit—the one that makes me drive past the street where I was supposed to turn, forget that I wanted to go to Trader Joe’s and not Dominick’s, and otherwise mess with my directional competency.
Another, less threatening hazard caused by thinking while driving is my inability to remember what brilliant idea I’ve come up with by the time I get where I’m going.
The only way to stop the good, bad, and ugly thoughts from intruding on my driving is to meditate—a practice probably not recommended by driving instructors or cops. Chanting “om” or “dri-i-i-ve” might clear my brain, but the downside might be a deep, relaxing sleep, also not recommended by driving instructors—and cops.
So I’ll continue to stay off the cell phone and obey the Rules of the Road. But don’t mess with my divergent, but important, thoughts. (Wait! I had a great idea for the ending of this blog post while coming home from Walgreen’s this morning. What the heck was it?)