Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Highway Spooning

I don’t have a “Choose Civility in Howard County” magnet on the back of my car to say I’m better than you (that’s what my BTRTHNU vanity plate is supposed to convey). Admittedly it goes against my original bumper stickers & ribbon magnets rant (http://morucci.blogspot.com/2006/01/bumper-stickers-ribbon-magnets.html), but it’s still important to me to say: “Caution: I allow other drivers to slide in front of me instead of closing the gap. I try to leave a car length or two in front of me so I don’t have a bruise on my fivehead when it smacks the steering wheel after you've decided to suddenly stop in front of me. And, no, I’m actually not better than you.”

Today is the first autumn snow in my area. Although most of us learned water freezes at 32° F, most of us seem to ignore that fact and think tire friction must somehow heat the roads, keeping them safe. So we drive business as usual.

I understand you, monsieur ou mademoiselle "offensive" driver, need to be somewhere. It may not be obvious to you (so read this slowly) but, in fact, everyone out there driving needs to be somewhere. That’s probably why we’re all driving. You may think you need to be wherever “there” is before me, or are somehow entitled to be “there” before me, and that I’m the one person in the universe holding you up, but that actually can’t be determined from your vantage point.

When it’s snowing, and the air temp is 28° F, and all those signs that say “Bridge Freezes Before Roadway” still don’t remind you you’re being an ass, front-end damage to your car and engine just might after you finally (or once again) hit someone.

Riding my bumper like a dog sniffing another dog’s bum won’t tell you my emotional state, though it certainly has an effect on it. And it definitely won’t motivate me to move any faster or get out of your way. Flashing your lights or driving in mini-slalom fashion doesn’t do it either. Screaming at me red-faced in silent futility and pounding your steering wheel really just entertains me. And I’m not even in the left “passing” lane so you’ve just got to stop. All-important you is going to hurt someone, so please do us all a favor and get over yourself.

Spoon your partner, not my car. Thank you.


3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mikey: Those “Bridge Freezes Before Roadway” signs are one of the reasons we moved to Florida. However, even without the snow/ice threat, the drivers here are as bad or worse than where you are. Just because they are retired does not mean they retired their bad driving habits. I suppose they feel they don't have enough time left on earth and have to do everything in a hurry. Love, dad

jockey9007 said...

Great post Mike! Soo true.

Regards,
http://chaiandme.wordpress.com

Happily Coupled said...

I live in the Washington DC Metro area, and I experience at least one of these things you mentioned on a daily basis. Thank you for the post. It made me smile. I have learned to just take deep breaths and remember that I'm never in so much of a hurry that I want to endanger my life, my passengers' lives or that of another driver.