Driving emotions range from anger and frustration to stark terror

Have you ever had sex while you were driving? Would you like to? No, wait a minute, I’m getting off track here.

How about talked on a cell, texted, smoked, checked your teeth in the rear view for food particles, adjusted make-up, changed your underwear, sang, danced, flirted with somebody in the next car over, gave rude gestures to somebody in the next car over on the other side, kissed your passenger, copped a feel, or even picked your nose?

Of the latter, as an aside, it is a widely-held belief that being within the confines of your car renders you invisible, therefore you can pick with impunity, even though you’d normally never do it in public. Hey, guess what? You’re in public. Excuse that lapse into tastelessness, but it had to be said.

Of the former, the Insurance Corporation of BC has deemed all of the foregoing as dangerous and distracting behaviors. Such multi-tasking takes our minds off the job at hand – driving – and can lead to an increase in accidents. And it is a fact that 80 percent of accidents are caused by human error. When I look around me I can believe that.

As another aside, polls indicate that at least 80 percent of us consider ourselves to be wonderful drivers. If so, where do all the asshole drivers come from?

Anyway, the entire aforementioned are likely factors in mayhem on the roads, but just plain bad driving causes most of the trouble, and that sorry state abounds. Aside from the drunks and the tailgaters (oh, how I detest them), I have a special place in Hell reserved for folks who seem unable to grasp the concept of a turn-signal.

To clarify for the multitudes who are chronically confused about the use of that little lever on the steering column, it is an ‘indicator’ and it’s not for your convenience. That’s right. All it means for you is that you must use it to tell people like me what you are about to do.

“Oh, I’m entering my turn, hyuk, I guess I better turn my signal on.” Sorry, that just doesn’t do. Once you’re into your turn I have a pretty decent idea about what is happening. What you are meant to do is use it before you go into that %$#@&& turn so I can adjust accordingly.

Truly, it staggers me how negligent people are in this regard. Are they unclear on the concept, very rude, or pathologically stupid?

Something else I’ve noticed recently is that increasing numbers of drivers seem to believe that a ‘STOP’ sign is merely a suggestion.

Then there is the matter of demographics. I live in a community in which the ratio of seniors to juniors is around 80 to 20 – or so it sometimes seems. The worst spot is the shopping mall. That’s where Stop sign as ‘suggestion’ seems particularly prevalent. I am driving merrily along the other day and about to pass one of the entrances when a driver literally (not virtually) pulls out onto the roadway right in front of me. I let loose with every epithet at my command, mainly because the driver’s action scared the crap out of me. The driver, however, continued on his/her way with impunity (said driver was either elderly or very shot since I could see no head over the back of the driver’s seat) and headed on through the park zone ahead traveling at least 30 clicks over the post speed. My heart was filled with dread because I knew we were approaching a four-way stop – a chronic scene of mass confusion for drivers in my town – and I shuddered at the prospect. Well, he/she seemed fully unclear on that concept and after cutting three cars off continued into a left turn and progressed at Indy 500 speed.

And that was just one incident of many I’ve faced in just a few days.

It’s a jungle out there on our roadways, folks, so just make sure you refrain from boogying, messing around, and checking your teeth, and please use your turn indicators. The life you save may be mine, or that of someone I love.

And cut out the sex while driving. It’s both unseemly and dangerous. Or, if you are able to manage it, please tell us how. We’re all agog.





12 responses to “Driving emotions range from anger and frustration to stark terror

  1. There’s an expression here that, in this State (Queensland) ,indicators are optional extras.
    And this town is, apparently, the #1 training centre for arsehole drivers. See here http://moreidlethoughts.wordpress.com/2012/02/02/back-to-school/

  2. We say the same in Quebec, that drives who don’t use their indicators were too cheap to get that option on their cars. Actually, elderly drivers scare the bejeesus out of me. I think that anyone over 50 should be obliged to take a driving test every two years. And yes, I’m over 50 so I include myself in that.

    • But statistically older drivers aren’t necessarily involved in more accidents, — here at least. So sue me, I’m being defensive about that. Oh, and I found Montreal drivers to be kind of scary when I was there.

  3. Improper use of turning signals,or lack of use,is my biggest complaint driving anywhere…..As you said,it is of no use to me if you signal after you have started turning,,,,I am much more frightened by young drivers than elderly,but that may be because because of my age or perhaps statistics….lol

    • Yes, Fransea, I think you and I are in accord on turning signals. And I too am more wary of young drivers because they’re inexperienced and take too many risks. I know I did when I was young but luckily emerged unscathed.

  4. Well, thanks for stealing my rant…. er… um… Well said!

  5. Around Portland, a four-way stop leads to gridlock, then everyone waving at everyone else, then someone getting out to make more helpful motions, and eventually we’re all out in the intersection exchanging recipes. I love it here, but then again I never really need to be anyplace.

  6. No different over here in the UK. Driving is becoming more and more terrifying. People seem to use the faster roads as if they were a racetrack on one of their PlayStation games, weaving in and out, undertaking. You need eyes in the back of your head and psychic powers!

  7. I actually found when I lived in the UK in the 1980s people were very good drivers. But, like everywhere else I’m sure that has changed, Joanna.

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