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I recently got into a wreck the other day. It was not my fault, of course. The blame rests on an elder gentleman who was not watching where he was going. Am I okay? Am I still a handsome devil? Yes, thanks for asking. I’m perfectly fine due to the fact that this was no ordinary crash. This furious collision occurred at the local grocery store, involving a multiple shopping cart pileup. The only injury that occurred was a box of Cheerios that tumbled out of my cart (Don’t worry; they are going to make it).
This seems to be a common occurrence at grocery stores. Once, I just walked around the supermarket and witnessed at least several other accidents, similar to mine. Are these same people climbing into their various vehicles and slamming into other cars with no regard for human life? To get that answer all you need to do is observe the roads we drive on every day. Clearly, somehow this group of people all attended the same driving school, where the instructor was most likely blind, deaf, or both.
How do some of these awful human beings obtain their licenses? I recently discovered that one of my fellow Americans, after receiving his Learner’s Permit DROVE HOME FROM THE DMV?! Heck, when I first received my permit I waited at least a month before even attempting to back out of the driveway.
When my dad first suggested trying to drive on the highway I replied, “Why don’t I just go outside and pound dents into the car with a bat and save us both the trouble”. My father perceived this as some sort of a joke and proceeded to make me get behind the wheel of the vehicle.
“Alrighty, so I just move this stick thing to the R right?” I stammered, attempting to sound like I knew what I was doing.
“Well you kind of have to turn the car on first son,” he stated matter-of-factly.
“Aha! I knew that! I was only making sure you, dear father, knew what YOU are doing”.
“Ben, I’ve been driving for over thirty years, I think I know how a car works,” he sighed.
“And you drive so well, too”, I added as I scrambled to put the keys into the ignition.
The rest of the afternoon followed a similar routine: My dad tells me to do something, I do something completely different, pull over, dad sighs, I pretend I was kidding. For example:
Dad:”Alright put on your left turn signal”
Me:”Okey Dokey (sticking left hand out of window)”
Dad:”You can’t just show your left hand, you have to actually put on the signal”
Me:”Okay (turn on windshield wipers)”
Dad:”Pull over (followed quickly by a sigh)”
I used to think that maybe I was just incompetent when it comes to cars but then I started driving and realized over half the people on the roads are just as dumb as me. Once I noticed a car in front of me had it’s left turn signal on. The problem was, a left turn would not even be possible for other ten or so miles. The driver was apparently taking what is commonly known as an “eventual left”. She did not seem to mind that she was going fifteen miles under the speed limit and that fact that she could barely see over the wheel. I guess her line of thinking was: “I’m over 80 years old; frankly dear, I just don’t give a d***”.
Another wonderful invention that drivers love to do, I have encountered this quite frequently, is raise their middle finger in the air and shout obscene phrases at no one in particular. The problem with me is, I always think that they must be yelling at me. So I make sure that I do the opposite of their gestures: raise a thumbs up in the air and shout “Sorry!” as I go by. What affect do these people think that their obscene gesture will have on us? Do they expect us to just give up driving and ride a skateboard the rest of our lives because we accidentally cut them off?
Whatever they believe I want to inform them that I am following their advice. The next person that flicks me off will cause me to immediately drive home, sell my car, and never leave my house again. Because the world knows there are enough terrible drivers to go around.