Tag Archives: manners

Driving 101

I think I drive better than everyone else on the road. There, I said it. At least I’m honest. I take after my father. I have the worst road rage if you get in my way. Whether it’s a short distance to the grocery store or a dreaded hour plus commute to Seattle, I take note of every other driver’s horrible habits. I’m going to lay ’em all out. It’ll make me feel better. Reader beware…

Let’s start with the blinker. It’s the little stick attached to the steering wheel. The steering wheel is – just kidding. I’m not that crazed. But it’s clear to me that most drivers do not know what or where their blinker is. I feel psychic – like I can sense when someone is about to come into my lane, turn in front of me or swerve completely out of left field to their exit across my pathway – all without a blinker to signify that they are about to do such a thing. I swear if I had telekinetic powers, I would break that blinker off and shove it up the next idiot driver’s dark abyss that didn’t use it.

Goldie Locks of speed. You know the kind. They speed up, they slow down, they speed up, and they don’t even use their brakes. Don’t worry, I’ll get to the “ride-the-shit-out-of-your-brakes” offender in just a bit. This just happened to me today (it happens to me everyday but today was obnoxiously worse.) I set my cruise control at any chance I get. I wish more drivers would. It would help keep traffic flowing. Frankly, I expect we’d all get to our destinations faster. But no, we have Goldie Lock on the road. So, this morning I merge onto the freeway (using my blinker mind you) and I find a nice rhythm into the flow of traffic and set my speed. I typically pick the second from the carpool lane. Oh, and once I pick a lane – I stay there unless there is just cause to pass someone. Listening to my favorite tunes, focusing on the commute ahead. Then along comes that bitch, Goldie Locks, screwing up my rhythm AND the flow of traffic. There goes my cruise control. Now we’re all over the speedometer map. Not to mention, guzzling up my gas.  And wouldn’t you know it, as soon as I get the nerve to pass her, she speeds up like a rocket ship heading to outer space. One thing my dad has tried to teach me is to not to allow other drivers to control my driving. I have failed at this lesson miserably. Especially thanks to Goldie Locks.

Ride-the-shit-out-of-your-brakes driver. You’re not one of us. You are trying to cause an accident. I just know it. Remember, I’m psychic. You should not be allowed to have your license. Clearly, you are not cut out for driving since all you’re doing is braking. And you, like your friend Goldie Locks, eat my gas up! You need to learn to like your gas pedal – it won’t hurt you. I promise. What will hurt you is my large SUV ramming up your tailgate when you brake for no apparent reason!

And we can’t leave out the driver who waits to the last-minute to merge. This is my biggest pet peeve on the road. I can not stand someone who thinks they are better than others. (I know, I’m a hypocrite. I say from the beginning that I think I’m a better driver than everyone else.) I can’t help it. At least I don’t feel like I’m entitled unlike these other idiots. They think they deserve to get ahead of the rest of us who have obeyed the traffic signs and merged miles ago when we first saw the sign. These morons are the reason for the back up on I5. I wish I could squeeze them off the road like a pimple. Pop those little suckers! On a side note, one time while riding passenger, I witnessed a guy try to do that. I don’t recommend it. A major accident almost occurred involving the car I was in along with several other vehicles. So, I just scold them in my car and let ’em have it. But really, what do they get out of it? A few car spaces ahead of the rest of us. Which really isn’t that beneficial because in Washington no one knows how to merge.

Oh, the merger. I laugh at this. I think Washingtonians can’t merge properly because we’re too nice. We want everyone to go first. If we just grew a pair and merged at the posted speed limit, we’d be just fine. But we’re so cautious and afraid of the no blinker, Goldie locking, ride-the-shit-out-of-your-brakes while waiting till the last-minute to merge driver. Which I guess I can’t blame the merger for.

To sum it up, pay attention drivers. Use your blinkers. Set  your cruise control. Obey the speed limit (which in my opinion is 5 over.) Avoid overuse of your brakes and merge while maintaining the speed limit well before your lane runs out.

-h.

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When One Door Opens

Manners. They are hard to come by. I blame the separation of discipline from school. Teachers aren’t allowed to punish their students when they misbehave. I disagree. If you don’t have manners, it should be corrected. Immediately. From the start of your learning experience. It seems like as we get older, the more we lose our manners. So, if you didn’t have any to begin with. You’re screwed – scratch that. The rest of us are screwed.

It’s so simple to me. Doors in public. A door for an elevator. A door into or out of building. A door to a car. You get anywhere by going through a door. Plenty of opportunity to make an impact on the rest of the world you come in contact with through a door. It’s one of my biggest pet peeves when someone doesn’t hold a door open for the next person. Even more of a pet peeve, not saying thank you. Another annoyance with the door dilemma – not letting someone through the door when exiting a building, elevator, bus, plane, or train – you get the picture. It’s as if people are walking around with their eyes wide shut and only seeing an entrance to the next destination without seeing that others may be coming from the other side. I witness it daily while going from home to work to errands to work to home again. It boils my blood. I want to smack some sense of manners into each person I encounter that is guilty of said annoyance. Look up! Pay attention people. You’d be walking into a door if some polite stranger hadn’t held the door open for you. The least you can do is say, “thank you!” If that’s too much to ask, maybe at least a polite head nod and smile. But no. We carry along without any manners. Pushing people out of our way to get on to the bus before the others that have been waiting before us – not giving those that need to exit the bus an opportunity to do so. We jump on an elevator causing a domino effect of shimmying up against strangers so those that needed to exit on the lobby floor can. What are we afraid of? Spreading politeness? Last I checked that’s not a bad thing. And what do we accomplish by not displaying manners in public? That we’re better than everyone else? I don’t think so. To me, you show me that you’re a self-absorbed moron.

Some would argue that there are stipulations to holding the door open for someone else. “Polite distances.” I get it. It can be awkward at times. You feel the need to run ahead when someone holds the door open for you. Or you feel like you’re applying pressure to those following behind you to hustle up as you hold the door open for them. Point is – you’re being polite. You’re attempting to at least show a sign of human decency. Manners are displayed for this brief moment – despite any awkwardness. At least try. It’s been my experience, that no one has ever slowed down to deliberately avoid having the door help open for them.  Or mumbled any slander towards me under their breath.  Another drawback I believe people are afraid of – being the permanent door stop. I am a victim of this all the time. A crowd is exiting and I hold the door open. Then the person behind me doesn’t stick an arm out to hold the door open for the person behind them. What am I going to do? Let the door hit the following people out their way out? Certainly not. So I stand their, as an unpaid doorman. Which is fine by me. I’d rather that than be a hypocrite to my own pet peeve and not hold the door open for someone else.  And what do I lose? A few minutes -tops. Sometimes, I lose more – My patience. I loose my patience when people just walk right on through without saying thank you or nodding in appreciation. I’m doing you a favor.

Manners come down to this: The golden rule.  Not that kind. The rule that you learned (or should have learned) growing up. Treat others as you want to be treated. You want someone to hold the door open for you. Let you off the elevator before they get in. Allow you to get off the bus before they step on. So you do these things in hopes that others will take notice and start to do the same. Then it takes me back to the lesson of not doing things for reciprocation of applause or recognition – or even to have it done in return to you. We should be polite and do random acts of kindness just because. And because not slamming the door in the sweet elderly lady’s face and she exits the building after you is the right thing to do.

-h.

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