I was driving home last night with my Jag stuck in third gear. It’s a long story, but the summary is that the shifter cable is not adjusted quite right making the transmission think there is a problem. It’s not a big deal for driving. It only affects initial acceleration and fuel economy which is down about 4 mpg. At 65 mph, the engine is revving at 3000 RPM which makes for instantaneous acceleration at highway speeds. Kinda nice, if you ask me.
Now back to the story. I took I-90 East home and entered the freeway at Rt. 306 in Mentor. This is where the problem began. In my opinion, I was accelerating pretty well for a car stuck in third gear. Apparently, the little red Pontiac G5 attached to my bumper didn’t think so. So, how should a Christian, former pastor, driving a 23-year-old Jaguar respond? Now, let me just stop and say that I am normally cognizant of how my driving affects people around me. I don’t speed, cut off people, or make gestures at other drivers. From what I have been studying in the Bible, my actions should convey the change Jesus has made in me. But something happened last night when that pesky little car kept following so close. Instead of pulling over and letting him pass the slowpoke, I stomped on the accelerator and left him in the dust … about 50 yards in the dust!
That incident got me to thinking. What was it that made me act that way? Was my pride responding like the Caddy driver when the little Nash Rambler tried to pass him? BEEP! BEEP! I remember a college president saying that he would pull over for “idiot” drivers because it wasn’t worth getting angry. Maybe that’s what I should have done. Well, the story doesn’t end there. As I continued past Rt. 615, a little car pulled up next to me and revved his engine. Are you kidding me? Did someone put a bumper sticker that said, “Rev your engine if you want to race today” on the back of my Jag? Then I looked over and it was a car buddy. This time, I smiled and waved before stomping on the accelerator. That time it felt a little better.