Sound off: The curse of mobile phones in Dublin traffic
Malachy Clerkin: Getting antsy in the car is one of life’s most pointless indulgences. But it ain’t easy not to
The wonderful driver at the front is probably perfecting their latest hilarious tweet. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times
If you spend any amount of time driving around Dublin city, you have no choice but to become entirely sanguine about most aspects of the slog. You accept that nothing will happen quickly. You smile breezily at the jay-walkers and you let the cyclists know that you come in peace.
Above all, you try not to get cranky, purely out of self-preservation. Getting antsy in the car is one of life’s most pointless indulgences. You are in a tin box, just you and your rage. Nothing is changing. Your circumstances are not improving. You are a tree falling in a forest and precisely nobody hears. They don’t care or know about you.
It ain’t easy, though. Specifically, it ain’t easy in a world of mobile phones. Uber-specifically, it ain’t easy in a world where you’re sitting third in the queue at a traffic light – a traffic light that you know is only going to turn green for an implausibly short length of time – and the car at the front isn’t moving and its brake lights are still glowing red and the car in second has the clutch down and is ready to go and you have the clutch down and are ready to go and still the rotten bastard hasn’t noticed that the lights have changed because he/she is casually checking Twitter or just finishing an email or changing the X on the end of a text to a lower case x because God forbid you would send a capital KISS to someone and Oh S**t the light is amber and the first car moves off with a sorry-sorry wave and the second one bolts through the red because look it wasn’t his fault we all got stuck and you are left sitting there like a chained dog who’s just got the smell of bacon frying in next door’s kitchen.
Not easy. No, it’s not.