traffic light

The post is by Jen Singer of Momma Said and was previously published on her blog.

After decades of driving, I know a thing or two about how to stay focused on the road while driving, despite distractions.

I’ve endured a carload of kids, jacked up on sugar and playing kazoos, as I drove them home from a birthday party.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I’ve had to swerve when a car veered into my lane and nearly hit me and my car full of 12 year-old soccer players head-on.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I’ve avoided car doors swinging open, bike messengers zooming by, and taxi cabs cutting me off in Manhattan, at rush hour, in the rain.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I made a phone call from my car.

And I ran a red light.

My son and I were driving home Sunday from buying a file cabinet off Craigslist. When we stopped at a red light, I decided to call my manager to let him know the exciting news that I’d just found out I was going on Fox & Friends the next morning. I stuck the earpiece in my ear, dialed his number, and waited. The moment his voice mail picked up, my son asked me a question not realizing I was on the phone.

And I hit the gas.

And I drove into the intersection.

And I thanked God no cars were coming the other way.

And we made it to the other side unscathed. Physically, anyhow. The moment was still sinking into our psyches.

Meanwhile, I left the following phone message: “(Gasp!) Oh my God, Ed! I just ran a red light…..(silence while it sank in)…You just witnessed the last time I talk on the phone in my car…….(sigh). Oh yeah, I’m going on Fox tomorrow.”


So I put my phone in my purse and left it there the rest of the ride home. I put it there in my car on Monday, too. Yesterday, I put it in my jacket pocket. People called, but I didn’t answer. I didn’t even glance at who was calling.

I just drove.

On my way home from one son’s cross country meet last night, I pulled over to call my other son at home. I didn’t check email or texts at red lights. I didn’t call anyone or answer the phone while my car was in Drive.

And everyone survived.

So go ahead and call me. Text me. Email me. Leave a message, and I’ll catch up with you later.


Have you ever run a red light?


Image via Gzegorz Lobinski/ Flickr

Jen Singer from would love to hear from you on Twitter, @JenSinger