For as long as I can remember, there has always been a running gag among comedians and comedy writers about how men would rather lose a limb than ask for directions. It’s a generalization that may not apply to every guy on the planet, but you’d think it was, given how many times that theme has come up.
I hate to admit it but I am indeed one of those men.
I grew up in a family that lived on maps. In our library, we had amassed a collection of maps from our family vacations in addition to a couple of our fair city of Ottawa.
Once I was old enough to go bicycling on my own, I took to exploring our suburb. I would pull out the city map and find a corner of our ‘burb that I hadn’t discovered yet. Once I had my itinerary laid out, I’d hit the road.
To this day, I know that suburb inside and out to the point of being able to call upon that knowledge when traffic is tied up on the main artery, and I can nimbly navigate around the obstacle.
That was my first exposure to using maps, which became a life skill in itself, along with knowing how to fold it neatly back to its original accordion-like creasing. Continue reading