Clown Cannon


Oh, this must be Los Angeles.

Oh, that’s right, this is Los Angeles.

I took the highway home today.

Typically I try to avoid the highway altogether if I am driving anywhere during rush hour (which around here is All The Time) but I especially tend to avoid it on Friday nights because Friday night traffic in Los Angeles seems to be a beast of it’s own. Tonight, for reasons that escape me now, I thought taking the highway would be a good idea. In terms of traffic, the drive wasn’t actually too bad: it didn’t take me any longer than it would’ve taken me to use surface streets, anyway.

I have to admit, though, I wasn’t expecting the cannon.

It was about an hour into my commute. The sun had gone down. I was well entrenched on one of the busier highways of my route when I realized that the truck in the lane to my right was towing a cannon. A legitimate cannon. As in cannonballs. I couldn’t place the era: probably Civil War, but I’m no expert. It was on a wheeled cart with big wooden cart-wheels and this was mounted on a tow trailer behind a pickup truck. The cannon faced frontwards, as if the driver had decided it would be useful reinforcement should traffic come to a standstill.

Come to think of it, traffic was flowing pretty well right about the time I passed it.

I thought that was going to be the strangest part of my drive. I was wrong. I was proven wrong when a small vintage convertible passed me on the left. The body was painted purple. The wheel wells were painted acid green. The rear bumper read “City Clown”.

Yes. It was a clown car.

Yes. It was driven by a clown.

A clown in full makeup, complete with a tiny cowboy hat atop a bald pate with a profusion of curly hair around the edges. It was a sad face clown, I glimpsed as I passed. It was the face we were all probably making from being stuck in traffic.

According to the rules of comedy there should’ve been a third unusual encounter in this story to make it complete, but the rest of the drive was uneventful. I suppose that after a cannon and a clown car all the other crazy, high-beams, walleyed, blindspot hugging Los Angeles drivers seemed dull by comparison.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on March 6, 2015.

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