Rather than adapt, the natural tendency when we encounter adversity is to retreat. Why? It makes sense if we’re exhausted. Having driven through adversity to achieve something impossible, it’s certainly wise to rest. In “The Story,” John [left] and Trishna [right] won’t get an easy pass. They’ll have to thrive in a world of strife, just like we all do. Let’s explore how driving our vehicles might help them, and us, learn some adversity tolerance.
Spoilers?: Minor (psychological character studies)
Let’s start with a recent driving experience.
Driving around the Seattle Center is an exercise in dangerous driving. Poorly-designed intersections abound, I didn’t have the reckless abandon to barrel blindly through one area that another driver wanted to risk life and limb to lob his vehicle through, so naturally, that driver honked his horn. What can one do but drive slower to acquiesce this added stress… after giving the finger? This driver ended up not finding a spot, either, and sped off to harass another driver.
Why do people do this? Why did I let this action bother me?
For as many years as I’ve been driving, I still don’t have the self-confidence about my driving to handle aggressive drivers like that. I prefer leaving early, staying late, avoiding heavy traffic, and not driving to sidestep these drivers. I’m guilty of lacking empathy for drivers, myself, so I’m not some bastion of best practice driving, but I’ve been trying. Life might be better if we were all patient with each other. Until that dream is realized, we tolerate what we can.
No use escalating situations like this.
Similarly, I think John and Trishna might become adequate, if not good, drivers, but even they would need to practice more caution than most drivers. Trishna will have more years of experience and can drive automatic vehicles well enough. John picks up driving decently well, but might, similarly to me, be partially impaired by a temper against aggressors. Trishna might also be likely to pick fights, too. Part of figuring out who will do what is throwing scenarios at them.
Driving, like any situation, tests our resolves.
When the roads are clear of traffic and weather, we can go at our own pace. Some people are comfortable speeding while others would rather lounge. It’s when people at different paces are mashed up in a crowded area that we run into conflict. Especially with an ever-increasing driving population and lack of traffic infrastructure improvements, we have to tolerate the adversity of different driving paces and overcrowded streets through internally improving our adversity tolerance.
Advocating for external improvements take time.
While it’s easier to not drive, as passengers we’ll still likely encounter aggressive drivers like that aforementioned driver, just as we’ll encounter aggressive people in everyday situations. Bosses, colleagues, acquaintances, strangers, friends, family, pets, and everyone in between can become aggressors of situations: do we hide from everyone? No! Instead, we learn to tolerate their adverse behaviors.
Not always immediately, but eventually, we become desensitized.
|Sources: The Story’s Imaginarium.|
|Inspirations: I was going to write about more generalized adversity, and how John and Trishna might handle them, but I guess I focused too much on one particular driving experience. Oh well… It’s not exactly a proper update to “The Story,” but it does present some general brainstorming ideas, namely, how would they go about overcoming generalized or specific anxieties? I’d like to think through teamwork and mutual understandings and deescalating tensions.|
|Related: Essays building “The Story.”|
|Photo: Generic photo to save time.|
|Written On: September 17th [1 hour]|
|Last Edited: September 17th [0 minutes]|