I work for a multi-facility company which means sometimes I get to leave work at rush hour from the far side of what amounts to a major city for my region. The drive home takes forever. Tonight was one of those nights. Usually, I’m rather displeased with this as it takes an extra hour to get home. Tonight was a different story entirely.
Today’s tale: Burnside’s Time Travels
The eight lane (four in either direction) boulevard that makes up the major artery of this town is packed with cars. Beat up Jeeps, over-sized F-250s, minivans, this road has it all. And it is all bumper to bumper as my part of the car pack goes through green light after green light. I’d call it a miracle if not for the well publicized city planning project that went into making rush hour drive time a little easier for commuters through this metropolis.
The town whips by at speeds of 30 to 35 miles per hour in a 50 mph zone. Not as fast as we could be going, but better than nothing.
One car, a red VW Passat that is quite out of place is not enjoying going 20 under the limit and the driver is making his mood known. Something tells me the mood is a pretty regular thing.
The rear window is covered in Infowars bumper stickers, e-cigarette logos and stickers for bands that I’ve never heard of and probably don’t want to know. The driver is hugging the inside lane to a degree that concerns not only the person in the left lane stuck right beside the VW, but the entire column of cars behind him. At least the bumper to bumper traffic died down a little.
A mile or so after the VW comes into my view I become the car stuck beside him.
I have never felt nervous driving beside a small car with a distracted driver until this moment. I look over to see a mid 30s male in a white t-shirt and a tan fedora with the front brim pierced with a few dozen bright brass fishing lures. The guy has a goatee and keeps his blonde hair cut just frighteningly short.
My nervousness does not stem from the poor driving or the anger pulsing out of the driver. No, my nervousness stems from the fact that I am driving next to a time traveler.
The driver is called Burnside by his buddies, all of whom are also time travelers. Burnside adopted his nickname when he joined the group of friends that would go on to form the popular Back to the Future themed ska band “Brass from the Past”. They play regular gigs at the various Elks lodges that dot Colorado’s Front Range. They don’t have too many BttF themed songs, but they do start every set with the drummer’s Christopher Lloyd impression (he does a solid “great, Scott!”). Sets end with a Huey Lewis and the News medley and the bass player shouts “Outta time!” before the whole group follows her lead and run off stage.
Burnside is a bit of a wild card in the group. While everyone enjoys the little homage to the 90s that naturally comes by playing ska in the 21st century, Burnside takes it a bit further. He wears a chain wallet still and his Vans collection is sick. He swears Final Fantasy 7 is the only video game any one needs and can quite Last Action Hero like no body’s business. Sometimes when he gets really sad, he takes comfort in “very special episodes” of TGIF shows.
He’s thoroughly connected to the essence of the 1990s and wants to go back to the pre dot com days when things were ‘simpler’ as he believes. He’s wrong, but don’t tell him that or he’ll smack your face with his trombone.
Burnside, like, totally sucks. Totally.
Thanks for reading! May your drive time be swell.
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