driver etiquette (aka how not to be a total a** behind the wheel)

At the risk of seeming like a know it all, I feel I have a variety of skills to offer my community at large.  I enjoy writing the blog, but there’s so much more.  I mean, you can take the teacher out of the classroom but you’ll never take the teacher out of…the…teacher?  You know what I mean.

Anti-bullying workshops with fifth grade girls.  Grammar interventions for elementary classes.  (What’s up with this sudden influx of “ain’t”?)  The power of journaling.

But first?  First I’d like to teach driver etiquette seminars.

Driver Etiquette (AKA how not to be a total a** behind the wheel)

*  Turn signals are not just for intersections and you’re not charged by the click, so for the love of Pete, use them.  Let’s see that blinking for changing lanes, turning into gas stations, pulling into the neighbor’s driveway, merging onto interstates…simply put, if you’re leaving the lane you’re in for any reason whatsoever, use the flipping turn signal.

*  Don’t be an arse.  Let people merge onto the interstate.  Even better, move over so they don’t have to worry about getting up to speed while not careening into your lane hogging butt.

*  DO NOT come to a full stop in the street while turning into a parking lot.  Regardless of the state of their driveway.  No matter how many cars are in the lot.  You’ve committed to a plan of action, the driver behind you has factored this in, now you have to do your part and get the hell off the road.

*  Keep a reasonable amount of space between our cars.  Not driver’s ed, umpteen car lengths kind of space, but reasonable.  I shouldn’t be able to look in my rearview and see if you’ve got stuff stuck in your teeth.

*  While stopped leave a reasonable distance between you and the car in front of you.  Pro tip: half a car length is reasonable.  Two car lengths while sitting at a traffic light?  That’s a crazy person who jacks up traffic patterns.

*  We get it.  Rush hour sucks, even out here in the small town boonies.  Be respectful of the madness.  Don’t block intersections, don’t pin cars into business exits…shoot, go wild and help other people merge.  If there was ever a time when Do Unto Others applied, it’s when tempers are short and everyone’s behind the wheel of a potential death mobile.

*  Pull away from the pump if you’re going in for a Slurpee.  It’s common courtesy.

*  We all gotta eat, and sometimes it’s on the road, but don’t eat anything that requires you to look at it.  Unwrap, put the car in drive, and go.  We’re talking if something hot falls in your lap, you keep on rolling.  Half your burrito tumbles onto the floorboard, you keep on rolling.  If your food requires attention, then you shouldn’t be on the road.  Period.

*  Seriously, don’t drive fifteen miles per hour under the speed limit unless there’s something wrong with your car.  (Side note: that’s why hazard lights were invented.  Use them.)

*  LIGHT YOUR CIGARETTES ON YOUR OWN TIME.

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