Melissa R. Mendelson is a published author and poet who was formerly a news reporter for the Smithtown Messenger Newspaper, The Brookhaven Review, The Ronkonkoma Review, and The Medford News. She has freelanced for Hudson Valley’s Photo News and the film-making website, Wild Sound.
Melissa R. Mendelson has used frustration with road rage drivers as a catalyst to inspire the writing of Tango of the Road Rage Drivers.
After reading her book, I was driving from south east London to West Sussex, thinking about what to write about it. Joining the M25 London Orbital motorway these thoughts were interrupted by my own brief encounter with road rages and tangos with drivers full of "...anger, frustration, sadness, regret, but the bottom line is that they should not be allowed on the roads. If these drivers cannot control the beast within them, then their licenses need to be revoked..." – words from Melissa’s book came back to me.
Leaving the M25 and heading south, I joined the Surrey and Sussex single lane A roads and Melissa’s words echoed ".. to not panic. If you find yourself racing for your life as an SUV bears down on you, don't panic. Keep focused."
Now I was on a high quality section of the A24 dual carriage way heading in to rural Sussex without much traffic on the road. The white van men and SUVs had overtaken and there was time to reflect on school years as Melissa did in this book. And similarly, one of my favourite parts of school was the library; an English teacher used it as a class room for literature classes- the highlight of the week.
And as in Tango of the Road Rage Drivers, the car was a place of escapism. Melissa wrote " My time in the car is my time, my moment to be alone and think, and not be bothered by the weight of the world."
"There are too many senseless accidents, people just flipping out, and people dying. When you're behind the wheel, you have to remember one thing. Your life is important, but so is everyone else around you".
I agree with that and that "there is an epidemic growing in this country. Drivers are suffering from loss of depth perception" - could the growing use of computer games be the cause?
This book gave me a thought provoking read and a "...brief encounter with Road Ragers".
Melissa's short stories and poetry have been published by literary magazines such as Hampton Literary Journal, Bartleby Snopes Literary
Magazine, Squawk Back, Otherwise Caffeinated, and India’s The Eternity Magazine.