A guideline to driving (if you don’t want me to hate you)

car1I am in a perpetual state of fear and anxiety. And no, it doesn’t have anything to do with bush-fires, earthquakes or One Direction. I live in my state of terror because everyone out on the roads drives like a lunatic. And yes, I know that makes me sound like an old condescending adult. But in my defense; back in my day it never used to be like this.

So here it is. I’ve comprised a list of various driving malfunctions that you need to avoid if you don’t want me to loathe the very thought of your existence for all of eternity. Funnily enough, it’s also a list of great safety tips should you not want to kill anyone with your vehicle today.

Put. Your. Effing. Phone. Down.
Just so we’re clear, even if you spend the morning in yoga class; it still doesn’t mean you actually have a third eye in the middle of your forehead. Thus you can’t use said third eye to casually glance at the road whilst being face-deep into your phone.
Now seriously, are you really that bored by all the other cars and goings on that you can’t stop inhaling radiation from your phone for a little while? I know you’re super important and if you don’t answer your phone right that minute all the puppies in the world will die, but maybe, just maybe you can pull over first?

Green = Go
Look, I know life’s hard. You’ve been driving for a whole ten blocks since the last red light and you’re just exhausted. And I know sitting in one place for thirty seconds is impossible to do without getting distracted by the myriad of tweets and messages that must have flooded in since three minutes ago. Being you is hard. No wonder it’s impossible to see when the light changes color. I completely understand.

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Or maybe you’re just taking a much needed break and can’t be bothered with things like 30 other cars behind you. You just do whatever you need to do. I’ll be here. Sitting until the end of eternity, waiting for you to figure out how to get your car to move forward at the speed of traffic.

Mind the gap
You know when you’re sitting at that red light, ignoring it lest it turn green and you might need to move again, and you leave that giant 6 meter gap in front of you? Can you explain that to me? I know your car is a special unicorn that needs it’s space, but chances are somewhere behind you is someone else stuck in the intersection. Be a Darl and shove a little forward will you?

The pretty yellow blinking light isn’t a decoration
I know that a car is like an apartment on wheels, but you still have neighbors. Thankfully, the rest of us don’t live inside your head so smart people with clipboards have designed a way for you to share your feelings about your directional choices with that clever blinking light. It’s called an in-di-ca-tor. Please use it. That way I won’t smash my car into yours when it changes direction with no warning at great speeds. Or when you suddenly slow from 60km/h to 10km/h because apparently it’s not possible to make a right hand turn at speeds exceeding turtle death.

The lines on the road are also, not decorations
Those pretty white lines, yeah, they go on either side of your car. Not in the middle. So stop veering into my lane. My car is in my lane. And I am in my car. I would like to keep all of this in a separate physical space from you and your car.
I’m no physicist, but if we combine our shared car space at an average speed, neither of us will be doing well. Just sayin’.
Also, if you’re driving 50kms below the speed limit and not letting me pass you because half of your car is in my lane; I may kill you.
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It’s not a race
You don’t need to dart between lanes so you can go 0.03km/h faster. If the person ahead of you is going at (or very near) the speed limit the only things you achieve by darting lanes to get ahead of them are:
a. Successfully looking like a dick head
b. Endangering everyone around you

And also, just for the record you’re allowed to let people into your lane. You don’t own it. Sharing is caring. And frankly, if you’re going to let anyone into it, make sure it’s that guy who’s had his blinker on since the dawn of time.

Tanks SUV’s are unnecessary
You can read my thoughts on this issue here. In summary, if you drive a SUV on suburban roads I hope you get herpes. On your eyeballs.

Look, I know driving is a challenging flower but the sun won’t implode if you think of people other than yourself whilst doing it. If we all paid just a little bit more attention we’d all be fine. And I wouldn’t come home every day feeling like I’ve narrowly escaped death – or at least death by insurance premiums.

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9 thoughts on “A guideline to driving (if you don’t want me to hate you)

  1. My favourite thing to do with my phone when creeping along in traffic is taking pictures of all the idiots who can’t stay in their lanes. I’ll have a blog post about them coming soon. I can’t believe how many people think their little sedans are so big they need to take up two lanes. People in Melbourne are just some of the worst drivers ever.

    • I’m not too sure whether taking photos of people not staying in their lanes is the safest thing you can be doing on the roads? But nonetheless I applaud your reasoning behind taking the photos.
      I’ve had a look around your blog and really enjoyed a few of your posts. You’re a good writer. I look forward to reading your road rage post. Thank-you for stopping by and for your comment.

      • Yeah, I know. I don’t do it at high speed. Usually if we are slowing down to a stop or something. It’d be pretty hard to have an accident at 10kph an hour and I do have to keep a good distance in order to get the photo. I also have some from when I’m a passenger and then I can take them anytime I feel like it. If I’m driving, I miss capturing most people in the act because I won’t do it if traffic is moving or if there is too much going on around me (i.e. pedestrians, trams, cyclists, etc).

  2. I drive a 4WD, I think you mean SUV’s because I trust most people who have real four wheel drives, it shows they know how to control their vehicle on and off road a lot better than most, well, sometimes better than most.

    • Mmmmmm I agree with your statement that 4-wheel-drivers who know how to control their vehicles on AND OFF road would make decent drivers but my main problem with 4WD’s is that many are only driven in the city and thus never taken off road. I have no issue with 4WD’s if they’re being used for a purpose, but having them just for city driving is unnecessary. I think you posted a comment on my 4WD post where you also found that people with bigger cars tend to push or automatically deem themselves as having right of way over smaller cars thus I assume you know (at least part of) my frustrations with large 4 wheel drives.
      That being said, I understand your comment about using the term ‘SUV’ rather than ‘4WD’ and i agree that it is the more appropriate term. Consider it edited. =)

      • Define SUV? What I see here being called SUVs are more commonly called crossover vehicles in America. They’re like big cars that want to be SUVs but really aren’t.

        We have a Toureg that pretty much only gets driven in the city. Hubby bought it about four years ago for towing horse trailers, which he doesn’t do anymore, but since the car is paid off, we don’t see any reason to get rid of it. There are definitely time that I wish I had a smaller car (nothing worse than having to bypass a parking space in the CBD because your car is too big for it), but when we do long road trips, it’s very comfortable. And I figure it will eventually hold a few kids and then it will be more practical to have than it is now.

        • By SUV I mean a jeep-esque car whereby it’s 4WD, has off road and towing capabilities and is bigger and higher than ‘regular’ cars. The reason I changed it from 4WD to SUV was because there are some cars that are the same height and size as ‘regular’ cars which are also 4WDs.
          I personally don’t have an issue with SUV drivers who use their car for something a regular car cannot do (such as towing horse trailers), but my beef is with people who solely drive it in the city. Statistically they’re not as safe as regular cars and they get into more accidents. Personally I deem them completely unnecessary for city driving, but everyone has their own reasons as to why they own them I suppose. Hope that clears it up! =)

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