Sunday, August 07, 2005

Driving Tips For Ignoramuses

“Ignoramus”. I like that word. It’s got a certain ring to it don’t you think? My mother, rest her soul, used to use it when she was perturbed with someone. So, in loving memory of her, I’d like to dedicate this column to the ignoramuses of the world. You know who you are.

On second thought, there are just too many ignoramuses out there for me to cover in a single measly column. So, I’m going to have to drill down, peel away the layers, deconstruct the paradigm, cut to the crux of the issue. (Geeez, with verbal diareah like that spewing from my keyboard, I could be a high priced consultant.) Anyway, after careful consideration, I’ve decided that if there is one type of ignoramus more widespread and worthy of our attention than any other, it is the ignoramus driver. Oh yes. You know who you are.

Maybe you’re one of the drivers who got their license from a cereal box. Maybe you think the world revolves around you and are just too self absorbed to be courteous. Maybe you’re just too stupid to care. Whatever the case, here’s a few tips. Please take them to heart.

First, turn signal etiquette:

- - When you are at the end of a driveway or parking lot waiting to enter traffic, put on your turn signal. This way everyone else knows which way you plan on turning. It’ll make everyone’s life easier, trust me.
- - Signal when you are changing lanes, especially at high speed. If you don’t, you’re not just an ignoramus, you’re a dangerous idiot.
- - In fact, signal anytime you’re making a turn or changing lanes. And turn the darn thing off when you’re done. No one likes driving for miles behind someone whose blinker is going non-stop.

Next, some general driving tips for ignoramuses:

- - First off, turn the cRAP music down. Nobody wants to hear that brainless, monotonous unmusical garbage blasting out with its vile, repulsive lyrics. Most cRAP is an affront to every civilized person in this society. (No hate mail please. If I wan your ‘pinion, you ho, I’ll axe for it. What up wit dat? No wad I’m sayin’?)
- - When you are approaching a red light and it’s possible to move to the left, please do so. That way anyone coming up behind who wants to make a right turn can get past you and won’t have to wait for the light to turn green. It’s called consideration.
- - When you are first in line to make a left turn after the light turns green, for heavens sake, move well out into the intersection. Don’t just sit there over the crosswalk. There are other people behind you who would appreciate getting through the light this time ‘round. They’ll like you better if you let them.
- - If you’re going to drive under the speed limit stay in the right lane. Better still, sell your car and take the bus. You’ll lower national stress levels by at least a couple of points.
- - If you are not going to drive over the speed limit stay the heck out of the left lane. This too will lower stress levels all ‘round.
- - If you need to apply make-up while driving you are apparently too ugly to be out in public. Go home immediately, draw the blinds and get stinking drunk. Then get some cosmetic surgery.
- - If you drive alone in the car pool lane (or what is referred to here in Toronto as the “diamond lane”) give yourself a pat on the back. Your gas tax pays for the pavement. In other words, you pay more tax than public transit riders. Punishing people who pay more tax makes no sense. And, ironically, the fine you’ll receive is also a tax. If a cop tickets you, ask them how it feels to be a tax collector. I bet they’ll be plenty peeved. On second thought, never mind.
- - When someone lets you merge in front of them, give them a wave and a smile in appreciation. If you don’t, they’ll think you’re a jerk. And they’ll be right.
- - If you change lanes on the highway more than twice a minute, continuously, to get ahead of the cars in front of you, you are an impatient twit.
- - If you speed past a car only to have it slowly pull up beside you at the next light you should feel like a fool. If you don’t, I recommend some serious self-reflection.
- - If you drive with kids in the car who are not appropriately buckled in you should go immediately to Canadian Tire, buy a hammer and proceed to hit yourself in the head with it until you knock some sense into yourself. And, with every blow, repeat this out loud “I am a mega-ignoramus.”
- - Ditto, if you smoke in the car with children present. Only, instead of a hammer, make it a baseball bat.
- - Finally, for the dyslexic among you, that red octagonal sign at intersections does not say “POTS”. It is not a reminder to go home and start supper. Nor is it an invitation to slowly roll through the intersection without stopping so you can get home faster.

The preceding has been a privately funded, public service announcement. Your welcome.


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