Navigate Off Road


PHOTO PROMPT — Copyright-Roger Bultot

“Turn right and continue for two miles.”

Bud eyed the dashboard suspiciously. “Are you sure you know where you’re going?”

“Recalculating,” purred the strangely erotic feminine voice of the truck. “In zero point three miles, turn left.”

“Left?” asked Bud. “I thought you said right?”


Bud jumped at the sudden command barked by the truck. He yanked the steering wheel hard to the left, sending his truck careening down the side of a steep, heavily foliaged embankment. Breaking through the trees, the truck spun and screeched to a stop in a parking spot at his destination. Shaking, Bud eyed the scattered mail that had come to rest in the footwell of the passenger seat. Among the letters was one from Garmin labeled Recall Notice.

“Heh heh heh,” said the truck. “We’re here.”

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27 Responses to Navigate Off Road

  1. Dear ZS,

    In one minute, read comment. Very clever.



  2. That was great.
    Every garmin should come with a recall notice…
    but before you even buy one.

    recalculate, before you buy me.
    recalculate, before you buy me.
    recalculate, before you buy me.

    Randy 😉

  3. P.S. Joshi says:

    Z.S., Hilarious. 😀 Sometimes those computers give a person reason to wonder at their intelligence. That one seems to have been a practical joker. Maybe there was a ghost inside. Well written. 🙂 —Susan

  4. That’s one sinister truck. I guess it’s a good idea not to trust technology over our common sense. Great last line. 🙂

  5. Melanie says:

    It is a source of amazement and amusement when people follow GPS instructions against their better judgment.
    Glad he made it to the bottom of the hill safely. Sounds like he’s lucky he didn’t go flying through the windshield.

  6. This is the first response I’ve read this week that made me giggle. Initially, I was getting quite analytical & was thinking about how easy it is for humans to take direction – we do as we are told – even if it seems not quite right.
    Loved this!

  7. See, this is exactly why I hate the voice inside the GPS. Soothing and annoying all at the same time. Sometimes I think my GPS is going to get angry with me and call me names. I truly enjoyed your story. Great take on the prompt!

  8. Scary one. I sometimes think my Garmin is out to get me. Tell me this is fiction.

  9. Blake says:

    And this leads to comedy or Christine-like horror…?

  10. draliman says:

    Very funny! I guess he shouldn’t have put off opening his post 🙂 That SatNav has a mind of its own!

  11. AH.. There are pranksters at Garmin.. I always suspected that..

  12. kirizar says:

    Nice dialogue and build. Why ‘Garmin’ though? Is that a brand of truck?

    • Thanks! 🙂

      As to “why Garmin” … I’m just assuming that the GPS device is a Garmin either mounted on or built into the dash. I often find myself writing about a somewhat dysfunctional (if not dystopian) future society where the various electronic gadgets are married together, so I imagine the Garmin voice as being the truck’s voice.

  13. Amy Reese says:

    Great description of the driving down the embankment. The computer is never to be trusted! Great take on the prompt! This seems extreme, but I can totally see it happening. Sometimes, we give the GPS too much credit. Have you ever seen the GPS video with Morgan Freeman? It’s a riot!

    • I’ll have to look up that Morgan Freeman video!

      I was in a car once with a lady friend looking for her brother’s apartment. We were driving along the road and could see an apartment complex across the field to the right but no clear way to get there. Each time as we passed the complex, the GPS device would bark “NAVIGATE OFF ROAD!” I was laughing hysterically by the time we finally made it to that parking lot. 😛

    • Amy Reese says:

      Oh, that’s hysterical!! So funny. When Siri gets confused, she says, “Proceed to the Route.” Even if she’s really really wrong! What a funny, Twilight Zone situation you were in. 🙂

    • Amy Reese says:

      Yes, that’s it! That’s the one. I thought of this as I read your story. 🙂

  14. R. E. Hunter says:

    A minor glitch! That was hilarious. Well done.

  15. seanfallon01 says:

    Love it, wish I’d thought of that

    • Thank you! 😀

      I often feel that way. I stare at the picture awhile, and not much interesting comes to me. Then I read what everyone else did, and think “Wow!”

  16. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Zombie Symmetry, FUNNY – ha ha ha ha snort, ha haha! Fantastic! What a great story and you are so very clever! Love it! Nan 🙂

    • Why thank you! 😀

      When I’m able to incorporate bits and pieces from my own life (e.g. when a Garmin once barked “NAVIGATE OFF ROAD” at me), these Friday Fictioneer things are especially fun to write. 🙂

  17. Mike says:

    Your story hit right-on with technology recalls. You did a GREAT job with this subject. I just love it.

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