Bryan’s Song: Final Shot

I’m sitting in my car on Interstate 25 in Denver, Colorado with my wife. We’re NOT moving.

By Brian Gallegos

Listening to some talk radio. Some guy babbling about President Trump and the problems facing his administration.
I sigh. Wifey rolls her eyes.
I check to see if there is any candy left in the console. There isn’t.
It’s 3:30 in the afternoon. Slowly, we inch forward a couple of feet. Then we stop. Again.
I look over at Wifey. She mumbles something. I don’t think it was very nice.
We moved forward … slowly again … and then we picked up speed. Finally.
But then a driver from another lane veered in front of me and cut me off. I had to brake.
“You son of a …”
I didn’t finish the phrase. Wifey gave me that look … you know that look, the one that says “One more word and you’re in trouble, Buddy.”
Then we stop again … and Wifey says that “one” word.
I get tired of the political mish-mash on the radio so I change the station.
We listen to some guy rapping about banging something … for a second … I change it again. Wifey nods.
We get a cowboy station and listen to some guy twang about whiskey and his ex from Texas … for a second … Wifey changes it. I nod.
Radio lands on a comedy station. We listen to some guy harping on his neighbor kicking his dog. Not funny. I change it again. It landed on the “Seventies” station.
It’s been 30 minutes and we’ve moved about a quarter of a mile.
What the heck is going on?
This is big-city driving. Rush hour traffic jam. Bumper-to-bumper movement.
Way different than Killdeer. Nothing like this in Dunn Center, although we did have to stop on the road one time in rural Dunn County when a cow got onto the road.
We talk about our time in North Dakota. We both have fond memories and some regrets about moving to Colorado.
I was bummed not being able to watch the Cowboys compete at the state track meet. I remember the thrill of competing for state championship glory, although it was nearly 40 years ago. Several won state plaques that I’m sure brought wide smiles, plenty of hugs and numerous backslaps.
And I was bummed that I missed graduation, a time where the graduates took their first steps into adulthood.
And there are others we talked about … but then started moving … we pick up speed … there is now space between the cars. The guy who cut in front of me moved back to the other lane because it looked like traffic was going faster. It was, but then it wasn’t. We passed him and I waved.
I felt like I was in the Talladega 500 with cars zooming all around me. But I hung in there like Dale Earnhardt, Jr. I noticed that nobody used their signal lights. They just darted in and out.
The speed limit didn’t mean anything to them either. People honked at me as they sped past because I was driving the speed limit. I guess I was cramping their style.
Finally, traffic eased up. The rest of the trip was uneventful and we made it to our destination.
As we pulled into the parking lot, Barry Manilow came on and crooned “Looks Like We Made It.”

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