I Can’t Drive Fast

Pedro Hoffmeister
2 min readFeb 24, 2022

It’s One Of The Many Things I’m Not Good At

Photo by Omar Al-Ghosson on Unsplash

I know I’m supposed to be good at driving fast. I mean, I’m a man, right?

But the thing is…

I don’t like to drive fast. I don’t enjoy driving fast in the city. I don’t enjoy driving fast on rural highways. And — to be completely honest — I don’t even like driving fast on the interstate (for example, on I-5, where everyone is supposed to drive as if they’re in Grand Theft Auto).

When my friend Ben drives with me, I can feel my slow speed killing him in the passenger seat. I can sense his sideways glances, his not-so-subtle checks of my speedometer. He’ll say things like, “we’re really not in a race, huh?”

Or when I’m driving with my daughter Rain, rolling through town, she often says things like, “Uh, dad, you’re going 28 in a 35.”

That’s right. I’m that guy.

So I try to drive a little faster, but just to make people happy. I try driving ALL THE WAY UP TO THE SPEED LIMIT sometimes. And on freeways, I sometimes even go over the speed limit. But I don’t enjoy the experience at all.

Honestly, I’d prefer to drive 25 or 30 almost everywhere. I mean — when you think about it — that’s still pretty fast, right? It’s faster than I can sprint. Faster than most humans can bike. And I looked it up, 30 miles per hour is as fast as a horse runs. So going 30 miles per hour is like being on a horse going FULL SPEED, but for longer than a horse could EVER go full speed!

Also, I kind of like looking around and relaxing while I drive. I like to notice the types of trees I’m passing, the water level of the river under the bridge, how many crows are in a field, or if there are any red-tail hawks on any of the fence-posts.

I realize that my style of driving is not popular. People complain about it. People honk at me. They ride my bumper. They flip me off. Often, people do all three of those things even if I’m driving the speed limit — say, 25 in a 25.

When my wife asked me what I was typing right now, I said, “I decided to write about a few things that I’m not good at.”

She said, “Like what?”

“Well,” I said, “like driving fast.”

“Oh yeah,” she said, “you’re not good at that. You’re really not good at that.”

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Pedro Hoffmeister

Author with Random House. TBI survivor who struggles. Poet. Climber. Former Writer-In-Residence of Joshua Tree National Park. Podcast: “Boring Is A Swear Word”