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The other day, while my wife and I were driving, we came upon a car that was acting erratically. One second it would be going along fine, the next, it would jerk to one side or another. Sometimes it served into the ditch and came back up onto the road. Then it would go along fine for a while.
“You should pass this idiot!” Andretti the navigator demanded.
“But honey!” I exclaimed, “He’s all over the road! He must be drunk or something.”
However, something about the way the car jerked, made me suspicious that maybe something much more intriguing was going on. I squinted hard, leaned close to the steering wheel and accelerated. It wasn’t until I had closed the distance to about three feet that I saw what I needed to see. Although I couldn’t hear anything over the screaming of my wife.
“That’s what I thought!” I said, as though I had just confirmed the second shooter on the grassy knoll. “He’s not drunk!”
My wife loosened the grip on my hair but kept the same wild and threatening look as she began to deescalate. “What? Well what the hell is wrong with him then?”
“Car fly.” I said.
“What?” she asked.
You may be asking yourself what a "car" fly is, or perhaps whatever possessed you to read this far, but the truth is serious and has happened to everyone. The “car” fly, should not be confused with the “bar” fly. The “bar” fly, is an intoxicated ornament at a local bar. Other than eating all the pretzels, jabbering like a fool, asking you to buy a drink, telling you what’s wrong with the country, bumming smokes, spilling his drink, spilling your drink, telling you how worthless your job is compared to his last one, and sitting way to close, the bar fly is harmless. The “car” fly is a whole different matter.
The “car” fly will keep you from eating the pretzels, make you jabber like a fool and make you spill your own drink. It'll take you on a journey down a slippery road as you transform from your normal self, into a wild-eyed, twitchy, hair-triggered lunatic. No its not a GPS, you see, it’s just a little ‘ol fly.
The success of the “car” fly comes from its tenacity. Sometimes they bite, but it’s hardly a Great White. If the Great White had the tenacity of a “car” fly, it would get out of the ocean and walk across the Earth, picking its teeth with the finger bones of gawkers it devoured. No the “car” fly won’t eat you, but it’ll bug you, which also happens to be where it developed its Latin name “Sonofabugomis”. It’ll fly in front of you, not at a distance, but up close so you can feel the air move around his fat, hairy, exoskeleton. Close enough so you can see the compound eyes swivel in your direction. You'll feel his hot bugomis breath on your ear as he drones by.
He’ll land on your hand, oops! Too slow! You’re going to have to do much better than that. He’ll land on your arm, not long enough for you to develop a strategy, but just long enough to make sure you know he's there, then he’s gone. If he doesn’t get the response he desires, he’ll land on your mouth or face. Then, after he gets to laughing too hard to fly, he lands on the dash or some other part of the car that’s within the edge of your reach and stares at you.
Of course by now, you’ve forgotten all about the road haven’t you?
Your Sunday drive is now a fight for survival as your nerves begin to unravel. You can feel the sanity losing its grip with every nerve cord that snaps like an over-tightened guitar string. There he goes again! The children in the backseat singing "On top of Old Smokey" are happily pounding the drum of destruction. The person you were following has turned into a moron, even if it started out as your Grandmother. He’s looking at you. The love of your life sits next you going on, and on, and on, and on, and ONNNN about something! Maybe you could shoo him out the window? After all, he just wants out right? Isn’t that why he was flying around bouncing off the window a few seconds ago? It’s the act of a desperate man.
You have given in. The fly only wants the window open so perhaps his comrades can get in. Now that you look towards the window you see your mirror and notice that the $#%hole that’s riding your bumper looks just like your old Sunday school teacher. Such a nice lady.
You close your window and try to ignore it. Every few seconds it flies through your airspace so you can’t forget about it. Again…and again…and again. You begin to reason with yourself, jabbering, “I’ll wait until I get there, then I can get rid of it. Can I wait that long? There it goes again!! AAAGGHHHH!!!!"
You’ve reached the point of no return as you cast about for a weapon. All you can find is a half empty (It used to be half full) Cheetos bag. Which causes your youngest boy to begin screaming as you tear it from his grasp. Now you’re armed and looking about like Maverick in the dogfight scene of Top Gun, but Goose, your copilot refuses to help you locate your prey and has actually retrieved her mace from her purse to protect herself from you. THERE!!! You swing! Rupturing the bag in an explosion of cheesy snacks, but missing by a mile. However, your lunge has caused the car to swerve suddenly to the right. THERE!!!!
Tragic. David has smitten Goliath.
Is there an answer? What should you do if you discover a “car” fly? I think one first must identify the fly. Is it a biter? Is it a B-52? A buzzing window-beater? A clinger? A window walker? Pop can licker? Cruiser? Will this help you deal with it? No, but at least you’ll know what it was that sent you to the asylum.
The biter is self-explanatory. If the fly is shown in high magnification, it would reveal a hairy, hunched back, black alien, holding an ice pick in its teeth and wearing a leather vest, with KFC tattooed on the bicep of his second leg in memory of where he grew up. The biter sinks this ice pick into your flesh slowly. He's an adrenaline junkie, waiting until a split second before impact of the hand to fly away.
The B52 is a big lumbering hulk of black mass that hurtles through the air like a juggernaut. It’s hard to mistake this one. He’s the nose guard of flies, surprisingly quick on his feet and nimble to get airborne. He has a low pitched buzz and leaves a shockwave you can feel when he collides with the window.
The buzzing window-beater is the one that continuously bounces off the window. It won’t stop beating its head off the windshield long enough to go to the side so you could let it out. It is known as “Gifted” by its peers.
The clinger is by far the most annoying, as it lands on you without permission. The hand, the arm, the face, ear, nostril, hair, glasses and leg, are all targets of the clinger. The clinger is often found in the same line-up as the biter and can be difficult to tell apart. However, if you feel the ice pick slide into your flesh, you'll know.
The window walker sounds harmless enough. In truth it is one of the most dangerous and frustrating. It walks on your windshield, just out of reach, taunting you. It slaps you in the face with every step it takes and makes sure you see it. You think it should be easy to kill, but with a quick move here and relocation there it escapes. Even when it is within easy reach, it can be one of the most elusive.
The pop can licker can be one of the most infuriating. As you look down at your sweet, cool refreshment, to see this critter infesting the same place you had put your mouth. The other side of the coin is that you have to put your mouth in the place where he just did his business. Depending on how squeamish you are, this little bugger can send you over the lip.
Finally we have the cruiser. He flies back and forth, back and forth, never lands or flies out of sight, unless a weapon is produced. It is remarkable how one can miss this slow mover swing after swing.
So how is one to deal with this threat? Can't we, with opposable thumbs and all, come up with something that would rid us of this nightmare? There are several theories, one being the decompression theory. This is when you achieve sufficient speed as to suck the seat covers out of the car as soon as a window is cracked, then do so. Neil Armstrong came up with this one during re-entry from the first lunar landing. However it was actually Charlie Aldrin who rolled the window down. That's when he got the name "Buzz".
Then you have Sir Isaac Newton's theory of relativity trick. Which is also why it has never been proven into law, because it never worked. This says "an object in motion will stay in motion". For instance: your vehicle is moving through space at 75MPH. "Car" fly is flying around in car. "Car" fly was with you when you passed Grandma, so shouldn't "car" fly also be going 75MPH? "Car" fly's buddies are splattering on windshield due to sudden deceleration. If this stupid theory was a law, "car fly should continue on at 75MPH as you slam on the brakes, then suddenly decelerate against the inside of the windshield. Ridiculous to give so much attention to such a flimsy theory.
"Sonofabugomis" lives in some very hot places, however, have you ever seen one on a penguin? That's because they don't like the cold. Relax, I've done the research, so trust me on this one. If you max-out the AC until your Mountain Dew turns slushy, (approximately -17 degrees) you can slow the "car" fly down a little and give you the edge. Don't be overly concerned with your children's whining about being cold, their teeth will begin to chatter uncontrollably well before stage three hypothermia, giving you some peace of mind.
Maybe next time you see that “bar” fly, buy him a drink, bum him a smoke, feed him a Tic-Tac, and give him a ride home. If you do, perhaps the “car” fly will go after him and leave you alone, but if it doesn’t, please don’t try to kill it with your airbag. Happy motoring.