I Choose Pretty Over Safe Any Day

While driving home in the pretty pretty snow that everyone around here bitches about so much, I realized how rare it is to get moments alone on the road. The snow covers everything evenly and you're not quite sure where to direct your car. It's still and quiet and I'm forced to drive slowly and take it all in. I could choose whether to crawl along, surrounded by nervous drivers on all sides on a salty highway covered with streetlights, or ... I could choose the secondary roads they don't plow. The roads my car might have trouble twisting around the corners and getting up hills and slipsliding into gutters. The roads where I get to be responsible for my own safety and destiny. Have I always been this stupid -- to choose the long, arduous, more visually appealing road than the safe, quick, boring one? Yes. It's the same reason I choose grocery stores that are more expensive - they have better lighting and smaller aisles. The same reason I put on lipstick even when I'm sick - it makes me feel better. The same reason I make the bed every morning - it convinces me that part of the room is clean.

I was listening to my favorite paranormal podcast today and the hosts took turns going to a hypnotist to regress into their past lives. They had totally different experiences while under, but their trancy, slurred responses to questionsΒ  about where they were and what they were wearing were mesmerizing. I've wanted to go to a hypnotist since I saw Dead Again and convinced myself that my past life, too, would totally be glamorous and full of intrigue. In reality, I'm probably the guy in prehistoric times who gets eaten by the lion, a la Albert Brooks in Defending Your Life. But I do kind of wonder if I'm the same now as I was in the past, despite the circumstances. Have I always chosen aesthetics over safety and survival? If we're to believe there are past lives buried in each of our subconsciousnesses, then we have to believe they carry part of who we are now in every single one. So I probably have never been any braver, or smarter, or more interesting than I am now.

And in a weird way, I find that kind of comforting.