Leo Narrison, Campus Carrier Graphics Editor
In a generation of instant gratification, people are often so focused upon where they need to go or want to be that they do not take the time to appreciate how they reach a desired outcome. The most physical representation of this comes in the form of one of the most common sights in our daily lives: our cars. The perception of cars in our society has shifted from a personalized representation our ourselves to a simple means of traveling from Point A to Point B. Our fast-paced lifestyles force us to think about what is ahead of us instead of appreciating what is in front of us right now. Because of this constantly forward-looking mindset, many people do not appreciate what their cars actually mean to their lives.
The U.S. Census Bureau reports that the average American spends more than 100 hours of each year traveling in their car or truck. With so much of our lives being spent behind the wheel, it is difficult justify a vehicle as just something to get us from one place to another. If this were truly the case, each and every vehicle on the road today would be identical to the one next to it. If we stop to think about the experiences that we have within the setting of our cars, we can begin to appreciate the place that exists between A and B.
A car is coffee house. It is a place where we convene with loved ones to hold meaningful and thought-provoking conversations. A car serves as a cozy environment where we can comfortably enjoy the company of others while drinking overpriced drive thru beverages.
A car is a music venue. Whether we are belting vocals to our favorite songs, listening along to whatever may be playing on the radio, or shamelessly recording ourselves singing on Snapchat (come on, we all do it), a car is the most intimate music venue that we will ever experience. The honking of other drivers paired with the laughter of friends only adds to the acoustic perfection that we experience while driving.
A car is a retreat. It is a place to be alone, escape the chaos of your life and reflect upon your current condition. A car serves as a buffer for your experiences in one place as you travel to another. It is a place to collect your thoughts and ease your mind while being secluded from direct interaction with others.
A car is exactly whatever you need it to be. However, what a car is not is just something to move us along. Whether we do or do not realize the experiences that a vehicle brings us, the mere privilege of being able to drive and view the world through a windshield should be enough to make us appreciate the impact a car has on our lives. Challenge yourself to enjoy the moment the next time you sit in the driver’s seat. You might even find new meaning in the place between Point A and Point B.