Sunday, April 23, 2006

Instant Gratification or Slow Burn?

Are we addicted to speed? Not the crystal meth stuff or the "Mothers Little Helpers" of bygone years, but actual speed. You know... faster, faster!

For myself, I've noticed that I've become and instant gratification junkie. I want faster downloads of stuff from the internet. I want commercials to go by faster so I can get back to my regularly scheduled program.

Driving? Ugh! Fuhgedaboudit! I live in what is supposedly the fastest city in America. We have this horrible entity called "The Perimeter"--A circular freeway that encompasses most of the Atlanta metro area. Technically, the speed limit is 55 mph. If anyone actually drove that slow, they'd either get run over by a semi, or shot in a fit of road rage by another driver.

Let me say right here, I do NOT enjoy driving. I'd be very happy to be chauffeured around for the rest of my life...a forty-something Miss Daisy, if you will. Unfortunately, there are times when I have to suck it up and get behind the wheel and motor around on the interstate system.

Friday, was a good example. I had to drive in morning rush hour traffic to a destination that was 41 miles away. Here on my side of the city we have a "reversible lane system" on a major artery connecting the city of Atlanta with my little 'burb. I drove in the middle of three lanes of westbound traffic and we were all driving about 50-60 mph and were all very happy. Out of nowhere this dame in a Cadillac pulls out from a side street, cuts across two lanes of traffic--in front of ME and settles in to drive at 42 mph.

Screeching brakes, rapid, loud profanity....and then I'm stuck ambling along behind her while on both sides of me cars are whizzing past at light speed.

Once I'd managed to navigate past her, a guy with a cell phone glued to his ear, decided that weaving in and out of traffic made the drive go by faster. He managed to cut me off....TWICE within a four mile stretch.

By the time I'd arrived at my destination, I was ready for 10 mgs of Valium with a Vodka chaser.

The other area where I get antsy about speed is my computer. Now, I don't have the most up to date, fanciest machine on the market, but barring any problems out on the information superhighway, I manage to get along quite well. Downloading is a matter of seconds, not minutes or hours.

I didn't appreciate this wondrous phenomenon until yesterday when I tried to help hubby navigate to a website on his 5 year old computer. A computer that has been FUBAR'd to the point of irrevocable constipation by his determination to frequent shady gaming sites. I imagine if you ran a search and destroy on his PC, you'd find more viri, worms and other nasties than in the entire CDC.

I sat there watching the little MSWindows icon wave slowly back and forth, back and forth, for what seemed like a lifetime before I got the dreaded "operation timed out" window. I gave up in frustration....he'll just have to work things out on his own.

Just for the record, though, I have to say that aside from those little areas, I enjoy taking my time with just about everything else in my life. I write slow, I mosey through stores like I'm in a trance, and hubby has said I'm the slowest eater on the planet.

So what about you? Are you a speed freak? Or are you content to amble along like the Cadillac Lady? What are your "hot buttons" in this world of instant gratification?