Looking through toys with Grandma, I found a Richard Scarry book that she read to me when I was little: Cars and Trucks and Things That Go. It follows a family of pigs on their trip to the beach. Each page is a mess of animals and their automobiles and the accidents they get into: steamrollers running amok, dump trucks loosing their loads, watermelons spilling onto the highway, nails littering the lanes, a negligent dingo fleeing the scene of the crime, and mishaps galore leading to a final crashing pile-up with condiment trucks squirting like fireworks.
Most of the anxiety I feel while driving can probably be traced to this book.
Hidden in each scene is a gold bug called Goldbug. Later that day, I turned left in front of oncoming cars that, despite my green arrow, didn’t look like they were going to stop. To Grandma and the rest of the passengers, it must have seemed like I wasn’t paying attention; they cried out. But we made it through the intersection safely. I pointed into the distance and said, “Goldbug!”