Yesterday I left Olin around 3pm, due to my bad planning. Somehow I managed to drive around Needham and Wellsley until 4pm. After that I only stopped for a Mountain Dew at a gas station (I needed a bit of caffeine) and the later for pizza and a Cherry Coke along the Garden State Parkway (quite possibly the most frustrating tollroad in the world, who else askes for $0.35 every 5th mile?). It was pretty much a straight shot home. Seeing as I was leaving so late, I thought it would be easier. I thought most people chilled on Friday night, however there was still a pretty solid number of cars at 12am. I finally arrived home at 12:30am and went over to see some HS friends until 1:30am. After that I crashed.

My trip was uneventful for the most part except until I got to the Baltimore I-95 tunnel. There happened to be a pretty long line forming in front of the tollboths and since the toll boths are pretty horribly marked (read un-user friendly). Due to a lack of status information, more lines of cars formed then there were toll booths open. This means that the going was really slow.

As I was sitting there idling I started to hear raddling sounds coming from my muffler, which was being held on by a coat hanger (a story for another time). This started to make me pretty nervous as it was already past midnight and I really just wanted to be at home. After I had waited for about ten minutes in line, I had reached the front when a person comes out of nowhere and pulls up right beside me and starts trying to cut over. At first I get right up close to the person in front of me thinking, “I have waited my fair turn in line, now you should wait too.” Then the car started to move closer and closer. To retaliate I moved my car closer and closer to the car in front of me. At this point the person cutting is practically touching my car. At this point I decided to let them in as I would rather have them cut me than have an accident. As I was going through the tunnel I thought about what made me so furious about the situation. I concluded the reason that I had become so mad was the blatant disregard for rules. However I thought about it more and realized I didn’t know if this person had infact broken the rules or not. Maybe they had been guininely mistaken as to where to wait in line. Why had I automatically assumed that they were trying to cheat the system?

I don’t really know the answer but I now better understand why I became so angry. I have been always been taught that you must follow the rules in many areas of my life soccer (don’t hit the ball with your hands), school (don’t cheat) and life (don’t lie). Rules are constraints which govern every aspect of our lives finances, taxes, courtship, education, law and many more. However frequently corners are taken and rules which have been stated are bended or ignored (think about copyright law and that CD you copied from your friend). This bothers me to no end, if the rules of the games are not equal for everyone than equality can not not exist. I fundamentally believe the person who can stays within the bounds but does so most successfully should be the “winner”. IE if I study hard and taken a test I should not be displaced by someone who obtained the answers before taking the test, as using answers is against the rules. But I now realize this also creates an inherit advantage for those who are good at following the rules. If you are good at taking tests you will always win. However if you are bad at takening tests you will always lose. No one wants to always lose, therefore they must create a way to succeed by ignoring/breaking rules. I guess it comes down to judgement should be always be based on merit which is not exactly the view that everyone else holds.

An update from an earlier post:

Apparently Newsweek has not apologized for its article stating the Quran was descreted at Camp X-Ray, NPR’s coverage. In interesting NPR news, apparently the bush administration has decided it is best if NPR should focus on music rather than news due to bias.