Road Rage

June 8, 2007 at 8:35 pm (Concord, Rants, Work)

Well, I have officially finished my first week of real work this summer. For the record (since this will probably change!): I love it! I can’t believe how fast the time flies by, and I don’t even mind the commute. Well, except for the bad drivers. I love flying down the highway at 70 or so mph, when there’s no traffic for some inexplicable reason, blaring my radio, and being alone, completely alone, without even my computer (which I seem to always have around these days) next to me, connecting me to the world. Yes, I have my cell phone, but honestly, no one ever calls it (with one notable exception when he’s not at work) so I don’t really count it. I honestly don’t even mind the traffic too much. It just gives me more time to blast my radio and make some stuck-up New Englanders listen to some quality country music!

The one thing I do really mind are the people who simply do not know how to drive, either on the highway or on the road in general. This became perfectly apparent today, as I had a few notable run-ins with people of this quality, or rather lack thereof.

In the first category of people I don’t especially like are those who do not understand that the left lane is for passing, aka driving really really fast. If there’s someone behind you, coming up on you, obviously faster than you, move into the lane to your immediate right so they can pass if they so desire (and trust me, I can almost guarantee that they do!). People who either cannot or are not willing to go above, say, 50 mph, should not be in the left lane except when actually passing someone, and then returning to the right lane so that they can subsequently be passed by someone who is willing to go above 50. Now, I am not above passing someone on the right, if I have enough room, but to be honest, I usually don’t. What usually happens in this situation is I move to the right lane, then get stuck behind someone slow, and so I don’t have the room to actually pass the slow person in the left lane, and so must move back behind them in order to pass the person in the right lane. Very frustrating, let me tell you.

The second category (I feel like Dante, labelling his levels of hell) contains those drivers who have no idea how to drive in a semi-straight line, much less stay between the lane lines. These are the people who start to drift into another lane, sometimes even going so far as crossing the dotted line with half their car, before apparently changing their mind and moving back into the original lane. And don’t even get me started on those who straddle the line for a few miles before realizing their mistake (or at least I hope that’s what happens, and they don’t just happen to drift the other, right, way!). The lane demarcations are there for a reason, people! Trust me, people get hurt this way!

Category three is not as bad as the other two, but annoying nonetheless. These are the people who leave their blinkers (aka turn signals, or whatever you want to call them) on, and apparently don’t realize it. Blinkers are there for a reason: to inform other people when you desire to move in one direction or the other rather than continuing on the path you are currently on. If your blinker is on, but you fail to move in the direction indicated, you confuse the drivers around you, leading them to false conclusions, which in turn impacts their driving, and confused drivers under false assumptions are never a good thing!

Now, let me describe for you the scene I was a part of today while driving home from work today. I was stuck behind this smallish teal car in the left lane who had obviously not gotten the memo about faster cars being in the left lane. We were in a two-lane section of Route 2, so there wasn’t too much room to maneuver. They were drifting all over the place, so every time they got my hopes up that they would change lanes and I could pass them, they would come back into my lane. Since I recognized this fairly quickly, since it happened a few times in the span of less than 5 minutes, I was afraid to take a chance and pass them the next time it seemed as if they were going to change lanes, because I feared they would correct themselves just as I was passing and crash into me. So I couldn’t take the chance. So my next option was to move into the right lane and pass them. I saw another car a little ways ahead of us with his blinker on, indicating he was planning on moving to the left lane, ahead of us. So, of course, I figured as soon as they did that, I’d have enough room to move. But did they follow through with their end of the deal? Of course not! So I was stuck, unable to move beyond this pair of idiots for a nice long stretch of highway, until I finally made it to my turn at Emerson and could escape.

People really need to retake driver’s ed every five or ten years or something. Honestly.

On a side note, today in the car I realized that I have heard the song “9 to 5” more times in my three days of driving to work and back than I have in the past, oh, 10 years? I guess it really is the anthem of the 9-5 workers, a group of which I have become a member for the summer it seems.

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