Stylized line drawing of mark playing the flute

Waze Wants Me to Die

Waze told me it wanted me to die in the summer of 2014.

Jane and I were up in Maine with the kids and we'd been given a car and a grown-up night of fun in Boston. Some medium-nice hotel along the Charles River on the downtown-side, close to a bridge so we could get into Cambridge and Arlington (where we really wanted to be).

Jane had just discovered Waze so we used it for directions on the trip south, its sterile female voice pointing out obstacles, speed traps and directions.

Given the location of our hotel, I'd imagined that we'd bomb down I-93 into downtown and get on Storrow Dr but Waze had other ideas. It sent us down I-95, swinging around the Western side of the city, then vectoring us through city streets.

It seemed odd but I don't know Boston very well so I figured Waze knew what it was doing.

After winding around for some time, Waze called for a left turn as we passed a large cemetery. I kept going, looking for the street I was supposed to turn onto. Waze spat out a quick "recalculating-route" message and took us a mile down the road, then called for a series of right turns leading back to the cemetery entrance where it exhorted us to enter.

The only thing I could think was that it was some shortcut. We'd drive through the cemetery and come out on the other side having missed some sort of traffic problem.

The directions were coming fast and furious now as we wound through the tiny, one-lane roads between the plots. Turn right. Turn left. Winding in all directions.

Then, right in the exact center of the cemetery:

You have reached your destination.

The only way it would have been more perfect is if we'd stopped next to an open grave.