Driving Me Crazy!

Can we just clear up a few things, for humanity’s sake?  The DMV driving test is an epic fail.  Oh, don’t get me wrong, it definitely covers the laws – things like road signs and traffic lights and some innocuous inquiries about speed limits.  But driving exams should do more than test road rules.  What about civility!  Here’s what I’m thinking:

1. If you are slogging on make-up, finger-banging your smart phone, MRI’ing for a dropped cigarette or going to town on a half-pound Chipotle burrito and you can’t manage to seize the wheel when the light turns green, then when someone blows an airhorn up your tailpipe and threatens to eradicate you and your next of kin, you do NOT have the right to retaliate.

2. If freeway speed limits suggest 65 and you happen to be white-knuckling your steering wheel and turtling between the lane lines at a cool 45mph, expect a single finger salute from your fellow motorist—trust me, you’ve earned it!

3. If you happen to be mid-conversation with the latest $600 Apple gadget dangling from your earhole and you find yourself incapable of driving in a straight line – you damn well know when you’ve swing into my lane – then expect me to hit you, HARD, bumper first, in your driver’s side door, with my face pressed up against the front windshield, and my upper lip in a Picasso-like sneer, and my middle finger with its back pressed against the glass, and an awkward Chewbacca-like scream emanating from my vehicle, because it’s going to go down that way.

4. If you are driving on a canyon in a vehicle that looks like it should have hit the Overeaters Anonymous meeting before playing host to eleven bong-smoking hooligans who’ve just discovered that mushrooms and alcohol are perfect combinants to induce retardation, and you dare to pass by a turnout – knowing that forty-seven irate drivers are insanely close to committing roadside carnage – then expect other drivers to stop, and to stand in front of your vehicle and dare you to exit your driver’s side door…and know that the golf club they are holding in their right hand, and the whiskey bottle they are holding in their left hand, will both be used to bludgeon you in ways that will require not only a coroner, but a proctologist and a phrenologist.

5. If there are two lanes at an intersection and you intend to go straight, do not end up in the right lane when that light goes crimson, because sweating and growling behind you will be ME, with a hickory-based Louisville Slugger and spankin’ new tennis shoes which will get me to your door faster than that light can turn emerald, and I’ll make damn certain you understand that right hand lanes should be left vacant for people who want to turn right on red lights – because sitting behind some jackass who cant comprehend that rule is the infuriating equivalent of standing in check-out line behind someone who is going to write a check and doesn’t even pull it our his/her purse until everything has been scanned and the checker gives the final total, inconsiderate bastards!

6. Regarding window wash.  At 65 mph, that spray travels about fifty feet, which means your need to drown those bugs on your windshield, while making them feel like they’re on a waterskiing vacation, is now inhibiting my ability to see, an issue which I’ll gladly explain to the officer when he finds my grill inside your trunk and my license plate lodged inside the base of your neck, while I smile innocently and offer an excuse like “I just wanted to get close enough to thank her for the soap!”

7.  If you have serious commitment issues and enter the left lane and then feel the need to return to the straight path in front of you – the road more traveled as it were – DO NOT wait until the left-turn arrow completes its cycle.  TURN and figure out a way to fix it for yourself, because the six cars behind you are going to chase you down and do things to you that men in prison won’t talk about.

8. If there is an accident on the freeway, it means cars hit each other.  You have seen cars hit each other – on roads, on film, on television, on billboards – you do not need to perform a maddeningly slow push on your brakes, and slacken your jaw, and sea anemone your eyes, and give that low IQ fish in a fishbowl maniacal stare to see that two pieces of metal are now bent.  Try the following: Stare straight ahead and do 65  mph like the rest of humanity, and when you are ten feet from the accident, twist your head left for a full two seconds and gawk like you are looking at an ugly baby, and then return your gaze forward and do everything in your power not to stare into that rear-view mirror.  YOU can do it. If you can’t, get the fuck off the road.

9.  When you’ve finished your convenience store stop for hyper-saturated fats and that 42-ounce tub of watered-down corn syrup,  and when you’ve realized that traffic is going to pass by for the next thirty-seconds and you’ll have to wait that interminable second-hand spin before the right-of-way folks finish passing and you have the right-of-way into the lane, it is NOT acceptable for you to stick your snout out into the lane and impede us, because that is cause for Carma(def) getting your front end taken off by an annoyed motorist who understands that you are just an asshole who needs a driving lesson.

I know there are more but you get the point.  DMV tests suck.  Rules of the road are not real road rules.  Civility!  It’s not that big a word.  Four small syllables.  Let’s give it a shot, eh?

By ccxander

All Quiet on the Cerebral Front


Silence (def) the relative or total lack of audible sound

That is the voice inside my head of late – an absence that is tremendously present.  Hyper-stimulation – from technology, automobiles, mass media, and the ever-growing population – causes a certain impassivity, as though the constant barrage of information flows down like a waterfall and just leaves you moist and malcontent. It erodes you slowly, wearing away your sharpness until you are smooth and numb.

You remember when memorizing a hundred phone numbers was easy, when you’d reach for an encyclopedia to research something and find yourself scanning through page after page as your knowledge deepened, when you read something and paused for a moment in some profound moment of reflection.  But those days are gone now, lost in the rapidity of information transport.  Digital phone lines and satellite bounces now represent our new neural networks, as if all of the information we used to store inside our heads is now stored in some universally-accessible database.  It is no wonder we find so many of us with our head in the cloud these days.  Because that’s where we have gone, from deep processing to an absence of thought.  We have information at our fingertips. We’re texters and typers and builders of apps weaving connective threads in a disconnected trap. Our thoughts are digits and widgets. We’ve become fidgeting midgets.  I used to think connection meant holding a hand, but now it’s a hand that holds a connection.  Such reflection needs correction. We’ve lost direction. We used to be a nation that gave each other a hand and now we just give each other a finger.

Alas, I am ranting again, but there’s a whole generation missing out on life’s profundity.  If we always provide an easy answer, they never have to develop the tools to think.  And that doesn’t bode well for things like innovation, or triage, or solving world problems. Maybe, though, this is just the next stage of evolution, where the cerebrum shrinks and makes room for some other brain function to dominate.  Maybe we are preparing for a multi-tasking mutation, or perhaps a few generations from now some kid will wake up and find ways to connect all of the information in the ether like some Jungian utopia.

Anyway, the point of this blog entry was to rid myself of the silence in my head.  I guess that’s done now.


By ccxander