The Games I Play

I have two games I play in my car every time I drive somewhere.  These aren’t fun or exciting games for anyone but me.  In fact, I usually don’t include anyone in my games at all.

The first game I play is trying to avoid losing my satellite signal while driving under an overpass.  We live right next to the freeway so anytime I go east, I have to drive under I-15.  Every time I do, unless I can go about 45 MPH without slowing at all, I will lose the signal for a second or two.  This used to freak Kamryn and Rory out a lot – they always accused me of changing the channel right in the middle of their favorite song.  That may have been what actually triggered my game playing. 

There is a series of events that have to happen in order for me to reach the right speed and maintain it.  1) It starts with the turning lane.  If I have more than 2 cars in front of me when I make the turn to go east, all bets are off.  2) Assuming I am either first in the turning lane or 2nd, the next obstacle is a stoplight that is about 100 yards before the start of the overpass.  If it’s red, I really have to gun it when it turns green.  If it’s already green, I’m starting to get pretty excited, because the stars are aligning.  3)  The final hurdle is another stoplight about another 100 yards after the overpass.  If it’s red, I can’t really maintain my speed.  If it’s green and I’m over halfway through the “dark zone”, I’m usually home free. 

My second game is trying to come home with more gas in my tank than when I left without going to a gas station.  Obviously, this is impossible unless I’m siphoning gas, which I am not.  I have the speedometer display set to show me how many miles I can go before I run out of gas.  I have certain places I go when I know I’m going to win as long as traffic isn’t too bad and that always makes me happy.  Kamryn had soccer tonight and that is usually one of my winner routes as long as traffic isn’t too bad on the way home.  Tonight we left for soccer with an estimated range of 80 miles left in the tank.  It’s about 13 miles round trip to the soccer fields and back so you would think I should have 67 miles left in the tank.  Oh no…not today!  Here was my display right before I turned off the car.

That might be a personal best for that route.  I’ll have to check the satellite/mileage game log that I keep.  I’m kidding…I’m obviously hurting for entertainment in my car, but I’m not that big of a dork.

Sing, Sing A Song

My taste in music has been questioned, criticized and mocked for years.  I like all genres of music except country.  And even then I’ll allow some country music as long as it was recorded in or before 1980.  I have been known to sing a little Patsy Cline every now and again and who hasn’t been caught singing The Gambler the first time you ever sat down at a casino table?  Just me?  Ok then.
The truth is, I love to sing.  I have been told I’m not particularly good at it, but I have never let other people’s opinions influence me much.  Consequently, the music I like the best is music I can sing along to. 
My first ever karaoke performance.  I was singing Bobby McGee.
Today was a rather excellent sing along day.  I’m still milking my free satellite radio trial that we got when we bought our car and after today, any doubts that I had of subscribing to the service have vanished.  First, let me give you the list of my XM presets.  Ryan and I were both allowed 6 stations.  However, because of my broad spectrum of music likes, I find Ryan’s presets enjoyable, while he considers some of mine borderline torture.  My lineup is as follows:
20 on 20  The description for this station is “The latest top 20 countdowns from pop, rock, hip-hop and more.”  I enjoy all of the above so this is right in my wheelhouse.  Another bonus of this station is that one channel previous is SiriusXM Hits 1.  I don’t have to waste a preset when I can simply turn the dial one notch.  You need to consider these things, folks. 
80’s on 8  This is self explanatory as to the music played on this channel.  Who doesn’t love some rad 80’s?  I’m not sure how much longer I’ll keep this one, though.  I go in phases when I need 80’s and other times when I can’t stand it.
90’s on 9  This was the result of some overzealous programming on my part.  I was all excited and programmed this station on the first day.  It’s going against the previous strategy of not programming a station immediately preceding or following an existing preset, but if I get rid of the 80’s station, things will be kosher once again.
Z100/NY  I really like this station.  They play about 99% Top 40, but every once and awhile they throw a random hip hop song from 1992 in there.  It’s a nice treat.
Pop2K  Yes, it’s music from the previous decade. 
And last, but certainly not least;
Elvis Radio  No explanation is needed.  It’s Elvis and he’s fantastic. 
Ryan treated me to a trip to Graceland for our anniversary.  Super awesome!
Ryan’s presets include Pearl Jam Radio, Grateful Dead Channel, Classic Vinyl, Deep Tracks, Jam_On and 1st Wave.   Besides opting to program stations that are already adjacent on the XM line up, I appreciate all of his selections; some are just not the easiest to sing along to.  Specifically, the jam band stations.   I don’t like waiting 10 minutes in between versus just so someone can get a crunchy groove on.
Back to my excellent travel music.  Today started off with Sir Mix-A-Lot, BabyGot Back .  I don’t care how overplayed this song is, I love it.  My anaconda don’t want none unless you got buns, hon!  Shut the front door with those awesome lyrics!  Next up, DepecheMode, I Just Can’t Get Enough.  That keyboard makes me bounce around in my seat.  I arrived at Target singing Elvis, Always On My Mind.  No one and I mean no one sings this song better than Elvis Presley.  I made Rory sit, strapped in his carseat, until the song was over.  The whole while I sang to him he was shouting, “No sing Mama!”  I don’t know who he thinks he was fooling, he liked it.  On the way home I was treated to Guns N’ Roses,November Rain.  This brought back fond memories of seeing GNR in high school with my friend, Lisa.  We paid a whopping $40 for tickets and it was worth every penny.  And finally, Pitbull got me back home with Give Me Everything.   
I think this is proof that I’m all over the place when it comes to music.  I represented multiple decades, genres and tempos all in one quick trip to Target.  If you are trying to imagine me singing in the car, think of Lila in The HeartbreakKid.  I might look a little like that.  Okay, I look exactly like that.