Moktar, God of Traffic

Okay, Astrology fans– somebody tell me which planet or card or number rules transportation.  Then, if you’ve got the hookup and all, give them a solid punch in the ‘nads just for me.

Today, the following happened:

*  Mate got stuck in a granddaddy of all traffic jams before, during, and after dropping ZB off on the way to work. He claims the best part of this incident was watching the asshole next to him drop his shit every time the short light stopped him before he got to go.  Watching his face contort with FUUUUUCCKKKKK!!! was apparently high comedy.

Heh heh heh– Mate has a brutal sense of humor sometimes.

*  I got flipped off by a little old lady in the drive thru line. Okay– this might have been my fault, but she stopped her car in that awkward place where I couldn’t get to the speaker and the person in the adjoining lane couldn’t move to the window, and there was a three car gap between her and the window. I think she was rooting through her purse, but seriously, just ten feet forward and two people could be giving their orders and then she could find her money, right?  Anyway, she did that for three minutes (yes, I looked at the dash clock) and hit the horn.

And she flipped me off.

And I laughed for the next five minutes.

*  I was not laughing at the gym when Chicken called to tell me that a mere 36 hours after returning to San Diego, she got into her first fender bender.

And then she put me on the phone with the guy and he sounded like a real dick.

“I’m sorry, sir, I don’t know why her name doesn’t appear on the insurance card, but I assure you, I’ve seen the bill where the car is insured and so is she.”

“Well, I don’t see her name.  How do I know this isn’t a scam?  My car was new and she took out the passenger side– doesn’t have a scratch on her car.”

“I’m just glad everyone’s okay. Let me give you her father’s number, okay?”

Mate reported later that the guy just needed to hear it from another man– the reason Chicken wasn’t on the card was that there was only room for two names, but that if the guy looked, he could see that the car was on the policy.

Whatever. Chicken said that he had a scratch on his ten year old car and that he didn’t want her or her friend taking pictures.

I think our assessment of “dick” might be very much on the balls.  (She took pictures anyway. Because. Dick.)

*  I was also not laughing later on this evening.  In order get the kids to dance class, we have to turn left onto one of those big four-lane roads with a suicide lane–no light.  The intersection is on sort of a plateau before a rise.  Everything from the intersection with the light to Greenback is uphill, and it puts someone pulling out in sort of a disadvantage. In order to get a safe view of the street, it’s important to pull forward over the stop sign line– which, unfortunately puts you right square in front of the place where the sidewalk levels down to let pedestrians and bike riders walk across the street– but there is no crosswalk.

Repeat– there is no crosswalk.  Probably because the whole “creeping across the line so you can see” thing I mentioned before.

Anyway– this usually isn’t a problem.  Walkers feel safer dodging behind your car, and bike riders aren’t usually going that fast (uphill, right?), so if they have to go behind you, again, they’re not quite as naked to traffic.

But this guy was hauling ass. I had already crept forward– there was no way to back up, and even if there had been, he would have needed to stop to let me.  I stayed where I was, grimacing at his obvious fury.  He hurtled off the curb and dodged around the back of the car, but not before I saw the contorted face.  I know those words.

“Fat bitch” isn’t particularly hard to  lip read.

 He crossed the street behind me, tossing epithets over his shoulder, while I shouted, “Asshooooooollle….” in my car (with the windows closed. The kids were much amused.)

I found my opening in traffic and gunned it, and wondered at my position on the road–but forget about it.  Staying back behind the stop line not only cuts your visibility to the extremely busy road, it also cuts your visibility to the sidewalk.  It’s just as easy to take out, say, a bike rider coming off the curb at 25 MPH (this guy was bookin’!) as it would be to get T-boned by a car if I stayed back behind that line.




And it’s time to say it, people.

We need to chill the fuck out regarding traffic faux pas.

Driving defensively isn’t like “being defensive about your driving”– it means watching for other people because they might be stuck between a rock and a hard place, or sentenced to the same traffic jam you are, or trying to do the safest thing in an unsafe situation.

We all drive too fast, get impatient, zig when we should zag, cut people off on accident, turn too late or too soon, get lost, or are forced to accelerate out of a blind turn because that’s just the way traffic was planned.

There are too many cars and not enough road and everybody has a fucking cut off line–but unless you’re driving your convulsing child or dying pet to medical aid, there is absolutely no need to be a fucking douche about it.

And even then, make sure you’re the one who forgives people when it’s their turn to drive like douches.

Because I’ve got nearly 10K on my “new” minivan– and I can tell you this for sure:  I may be the world’s safest driver, but I did not rack up 10K on that car by driving like an angel for every goddamned mile. And if you do obey every traffic law, every safety regulation, every goddamned sign, I guarantee that you have put people in danger simply by being the odd duck out and not speeding or creeping forward or passing the geezer in front of you going fifteen miles too slow, even if traffic conditions don’t actually warrant it.

Did I mention the too many cars/not enough space dilemma?

So yes– drive as safe as you can.  But by all means have a little patience with little old ladies finding their purses, geezers going 15 miles under the speed limits, and people trying not to get T-boned by hurtling blind into one of the fastest stretches of road in your city.

Just be decent–and if you do get into an accident, don’t be a dick.  That’s all I”m saying.  Seriously. Don’t be a dick– following that rule would just make scads of people happy, right?

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