Just think - without the soundtrack, Indiana Jones would just be a dude in a hat. Tony Manero might just be doing stylish square dancing. Smokey and the Bandit could just as well be going for a scenic drive to Texarkana.
Sometimes in life, things come together. And you have the really cool, seemingly orchestrated moment that happens just by chance.
One night many years ago, I was driving north on I-295 from Delaware towards New Jersey. It was about 2:30am, and traffic was light. But it was one of those great, mid-summer nights, and I had the Miata's top down and the radio blasting.
Out of the radio came the surreal 1984 hit, "How Soon Is Now?" by The Smiths. As I sped the red roadster down the highway, I was the only one for miles on the interstate. The headlights sliced through the darkness, illuminating dashed white lines on the road, only intensifiying the feeling of speed. The exhaust crackles and pops resonated off road signs and the occasional parked 18-wheeler. And while the lyrics aren't particularly cheerful, Johnny Marr's guitar wailed from the speakers right through my soul - and I thought the whole world felt streamlined and magical as I sped through the night and across the southern span of the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
All was well until about mid-span, when I spotted a set of headlights coming up behind me at a quick pace. Knowing I had probably blown way over the speed limit during my fantasy, I figured it was probably one of the bridge police catching up to me for a chat. I let off the gas, coasted down to the speed limit, and waited for the red and blue lights to go on.
But they never did.
Instead, I watched as the approaching car moved over two lanes, and I caught a flash of something un-police-car-like under one of the orange streetlamps. I quickly turned down the radio, only to be greeted by the sound of a Ferrari flat-12 engine blasting by me at full chat, contained in a red Testarossa.
And like a scene from a movie, all of it was perfect and incredible.
photo from speedhunters.com