“Ah, man. I have to drive for 40 minutes every day to work now.”
Correction: you get to drive for 40 minutes every day.
Seriously. You get to command a fine-tuned, precision driving instrument at blinding speeds faster than almost any form of transportation that has ever existed. You get to take it down (usually) good roads to travel distances in an hour which once would have taken a whole day to cover. You get to actually own this form of transportation and take it just about anywhere you want.
Hell, you don’t even have to think about it. You can listen to music, eat food, or dream up business ideas. All this while your subconscious mind automatically helps you estimate appropriate speeds and braking times, dodging dozens of other vehicles piloted by minds unconsciously trying to do the same thing.
Driving is an amazing gift. It’s underrated as an expression of skill precisely because so many people have the skill.
And its precisely the fact that so many people can get into these rolling hunks of metal and arrive safely at their destinations every day that’s so impressive.
We’ve all somehow become skilled pilots of science-fiction-esque crafts which our near ancestors of 200 years ago could only begin to imagine. That’s pretty cool. But when’s the last time you took a normal drive and recognized that?
If you drive for part of a commute on a highway with a speed limit of 70 MPH, you’re going just as fast as the fastest race cars of just 4-5 generations ago. The land speed record in 1903 was 83.46 miles/hour. Now it’s no big deal when any of us hits that speed on the interstate over to Starbucks for an Americano.
So, if you get to drive one of these magical vehicles, please do not complain (so much) about your commute. Sure, commutes can be stupid and inefficient. Sure, cars can be dangerous.
But whatever cars are, they sure as hell aren’t boring – not if you really understand what you’re doing when you go for a drive. Every day you set your foot to that accelerator, you’re putting yourself in mortal peril, blithely ignoring that peril, and skillfully piloting yourself to a destination. If you see it that way, no drive is ordinary.