Thursday, April 15, 2010

Next stop… Driver’s Ed!

Now I am not a perfect driver. I will never profess to be a perfect driver. BUT I can’t believe how many people out there have absolutely no clue how to drive!!! I drive a minimum of 1 hour per day. During this time I witness some truly astonishing things.

Can someone explain to me why people think it is necessary when making a left turn to pull into the opposite lane, the lane that ONCOMING traffic will be travelling in, and drive in that lane for several hundred yards to turn into a driveway? Now here is where I wish I could add illustrations to this, but sadly I can’t. So I will attempt to paint a verbal/visual picture. When I go to make a left-hand turn, I turn on my signal the appropriate distance before my turn, and then I slow down and when I am just about to the designated spot for my turn, I begin turning my steering wheel in order to make a 90° turn.

It’s been a lot of years since I took driver’s ed, and granted my driver’s ed teacher was not the best. In fact I think that there were some, shall we say, herbal supplements in his diet that contributed to his consistently bloodshot eyes, and laissez –faire attitude. Even with this type of instruction, I learned the proper way to make a left hand turn. He may have taught me several things that were incorrect (as I later learned from my police officer husband); he never would have taught us to drive into the oncoming traffic lane to make a left turn.

It boggles my mind. Perhaps I spend more time thinking about this than I should, but it’s one of my pet peeves.

Here’s another one. When you are making a left turn at an intersection… Wow, I seem to have some serious Left Turn issues today… Anyway… when you are making a left turn at a signaled intersection, and you do not have a designated green arrow, you are to wait AT THE STOP LINE until you can safely clear the intersection. You are not to enter the intersection and hover there in the middle waiting until the light turns yellow or red and then make your turn before the angry people waiting to take advantage of their green light start into the intersection and smash into you. I’m sure that most people fudge on this one. That they creep out into the intersection and wait. I’m not going to judge anyone for that. I personally wait at the line because that’s what I was told to do (and apparently, yes my husband IS the boss of me.).

Whenever I happen to be on State Route 543 (More commonly known in these parts as “The Truck Route”) waiting to turn left onto Boblett Ave, I always get the same type of driver behind me… the impatient driver. They seem to think that my car possesses some super-power that makes it immune to red-lights, or immune to the smashing force of an oncoming semi truck; because it never fails, I’m sitting there waiting for the light to turn green, as are the handful of semi-trucks on the other side of the intersection. The light changes, and the guy behind me starts blasting his horn because I don’t immediately jump out in front of the oncoming SEMI TRUCKS and make a left turn that I am not legally entitled to at that moment.

I know that David and Goliath is one of the most powerful illustrations of how sometimes the little guy wins, especially when God is on his side. But I’m reasonably certain that if I were to jump out in front of an oncoming semi truck and I were to try that whole David and Goliath argument, God would tell me, “You’re on your own Stupid. Did you see the size of that truck?” Now if only I could somehow convey that message to the impatient drivers behind me who are sure that if I risk my life, and they get to where they are going 30 seconds earlier, their life will be that much better.

A few years ago I was driving along and I thought up an invention that would be perfect for me. It’s called “The Rage-Away 2000” and it’s a device that you mount to your dashboard, and when someone is driving like a total moron and making you crazy, you point the Rage-Away 2000 at them, and it instantly beams them to traffic school where they learn not to drive like a moron. I also mentally designed the Law Enforcement version which also sends their infractions along with them, so when they arrive at traffic school, their ticket is printed and waiting for them. As soon as Instant Molecular Transport becomes possible, I’m marketing this baby! Of course, I’ll also need to invent some sort of Rage-Away 2000 blocker for my car so that when I am driving along, obeying the traffic laws and not putting other people in danger, they cannot beam me to traffic school. Because sadly I am the one that these moronic drivers perceive to be the bad driver…

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