Friday, 19 January 2007

Corner of Lost and Confused

When someone says "meet me in front of the CD shop"
My brain thinks "meet them in front of the CD shop"

When someone says "let’s go have fried kway teow"
My brain thinks "were gonna eat yummy fried noodles with little chunky chicken/cat meat"

When someone says "meet me at the corner of Havelock and Ord street.."

My brain thinks " .... .... .... .... .... .... * insert windows screen saver* ..."

I'm completely hopeless when it comes to street directions.

With street directions, my brain goes completely blank - like it encountered one of these. Just the whole orientation of places and streets and which is north and south is all too confusing for me. Ask me to optimise a deterministic trinomial Eigen function there’s a good chance of me solving that. Ask me to design a fuel-efficient engine for cars that runs of the fart of cows, possible. Give me directions by streets names and I’m absolutely 100% sure that I won't know what you're talking about.

Now it’s something I’m not proud of. It’s actually quite embarrassing.

I hate asking 'where do I turn from here' seventy six times even when I’m just dropping people off two blocks away. I can imagine it getting irritatingly annoying for my passengers.

Imagine you're driving a car full of people, driving during peak hour traffic and you're twenty minutes late to the last movie screening and the air-conditioner is not working you're hungry and you're in the wrong lane and if you miss this exit, the next one is 30kms away
and the truck driver in the car next to you is giving you funny winks and you haven't taken a shower for three days and your hair is itchy and your socks are wet AND you don't know where you're going? It all combines to start affecting your driving. I get nervous when I'm not sure where I'm going and that makes for errors while driving. Which is not good.

To correct this deficiency I sat down one evening, took out a road map and studied the roads around the city. The evening was filled with "oooooOOOOoOOOhhs' and 'aaaaaaaaahhh'. Satisfaction from the discovery of road names for places I frequently visit like restaurants, sporting facilities, adult stores and shopping malls. Sadly after 20 minutes, the information sublimes to nothingness and I’m back to being forever lost in this wilderness of street names. *sigh*

What’s funny is my dad knows street names really well. He's like a GPS navigation system and Goggle earth morphed into a fatherly figure. When my dad meets someone new, they would talk for a bit, then my dad finds out where they live, then my dad starts on this scripted dialogue, reciting all the roads and places of interest around their locality. It’s really quite amazing and impressive and depressing all at the same time.

I guess I got my mother's gene.


Talamasca said...

Oh so you're geographically challenged, huh? Uh oh! Adieu to Amazing Race, then! :-D

Alternati said...

hahaha... I have the same disorder. I wonder if this is an actual disease. It's a huge disadvantage on my part because spatial correlation is a must-have in my profession.

It's also the reason I don't drive. The idea of constantly moving forward regardless of knowing where you're going scares the bejezus out of me.

Both my parents are good with directions.

I must be adopted. :P

FLip said...

haha yeah dude, i was getting pretty fustrated when you didn't know where my house was....LOL jks

yeah i'm a good navigator but doing that at the same time as a pretty hard task.

Don't be too harsh on yourself mate it happens to everyone, some worst than others...hehehehh

Anonymous said...

talamasca, i can still to amazing race!!
i can eat bugs!!

hang on.. different show i think..

Anonymous said...

alternati - my thoughts exactly!
we must be of the same family tree! we carry the 'lost' gene. hehehe.

maybe those 'lost' numbers refer to a number we call when we get lost.

Anonymous said...

thats it flip - no more rides for you! hehehe

Pete said...

Will, you have a wonderful blog. I love it... and i almost read the other articles. Thank you