Headed out to drop off my ballot (yeah, yeah, I’m late) and buy some baby food (don’t ask), stopped at the red light and glanced at the van waiting in front of me. Its rear view mirror was moving.


Looked again, and it wasn’t a rear-view mirror, it was a video screen. There was some sort of children’s video playing, showing happy children singing, dancing, and clapping. It’s night, the interior of the black van was dark, so literally all I could see was the video and the taillights.

It was hypnotic. In fact, I stared at it, trying to make out what the kids on the video were doing, after the light turned green. I bucked the temptation to follow closely behind and finish the movie but had a heck of a time–with that LCD shining brighter than everything else–keeping my eyes on the road.

I wonder if the innovative folks who built video pacifiers into the back seats of vans ever realized that they were creating a traffic hazard for other drivers? It was amazing how distracting that LCD screen was in the dark.