Driven To Relax

Owing to how much our culture requires us to drive, and, more precisely, how much time we are required to expend to drive to work, as well as the other nine-thousand routine destinations to which we must travel, it seems to me that a particularly good way to reduce stress either caused by, or while, driving is to follow the sage advice of Earth, Wind & Fire: Sing a song.

Naturally, the preferred choice for this activity is, and should be, Frank Sinatra. However, one can find desirable tunage in the catalogues of, among others, Saginaw native Stevie Wonder, The Beach Boys, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons (named for a bowling alley, not for our paisan Tony V.), or the funk powerhouse cited above. Why these cats? The works of most of them feature longer phrases and/or held notes. Singing more, and for longer, constricts the lungs, thus expending carbon dioxide (CO2, to take you back to high school chemistry). This carbon dioxide is replaced by oxygen (O2 – and, ditto). The increased flow of oxygen to your brain will generate endorphins, making you calmer and mentally clearer. In addition, if you sing the right stuff (I beg you: please don’t be a Belieber), it can have the added therapeutic effect of taking you back to a time and place in your life that brings back good memories.

… And if you think that people will think you weird for singing in the car, that is nothing compared to the number of stares that you’ll get pretending to conduct the New York Philharmonic’s performance of Bach’s Violin Concerto #2 In E.

So, don’t wait until September to Getaway.

… Whose work do YOU honor with vehicular karaoke?