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I need to rant on a couple pet peeves on driving.

Did you ever have one of those days when every asshole driver seems magnetically drawn to your car? I just had one. (Wedwand apologizes for the asshole reference. I pride myself on not stooping to borderline profanity in these posts, but, do you have a better term for such drivers? If so, please share, cause asshole works for me.)

The octagonal red sign means STOP. Not slow and coast through. Not ignore it totally and blast on through oblivious to other vehicles at the intersection. STOP. Proceed with caution. Geez, there’s likely a very good reason there’s a stop sign at that intersection.

Yellow light at the intersection. It does not mean speed up to beat the light. When you see yellow, check to see if you can slow to a stop safely. First reaction should be hit the brakes, not the gas.

Right turn on red light. This was a traffic law enacted sometime in the 70’s as a convenience to drivers stuck forever at a traffic light with no oncoming cars. It was hailed as progressive at the time. As years passed, many drivers now abuse the privilege and turn right into traffic as their inalienable right to turn and cause havoc.

Put down the cell phone. In fact, turn the cell phone OFF when driving, There is absolutely no call OR text that merits answering while driving a moving vehicle on the road. None. None whatsoever. Previous generations actually were able to live a noble life in the absence of a cell phone. You can too.

Several years ago, when our daughters were younger and dependent on the “Middle School” ride or pick up, they’d text us on the cell phone saying, “Ready. “ Either my wife or I would dutifully leave the house to pick them up.

When we arrived at the point of pick up, we’d park the car and fumble through the mini-keypad and ultimately text, “Here” sometimes “Jeer” sometimes “Hero” but no matter what, we felt oh so with it at our technological savvy.

On most occasions, our offspring would eventually dutifully come to the car, thanking us profusely for picking them up. Hahahahhahahahaha.

One time, our youngest asked me, “Dad, what did you do before cell phones when YOU had to be picked up in Middle School?”

I reflected, cringed and recalled. Now, my dad was an impatient man who had a fuse as short as the whiskers on a teenaged boy’s beard.

I simply replied, “Papa Don said be on the corner of Montrose and Milwaukee at 9:00 and I was there at 9:00.” In fact, I learned to be there at 8:55 or all hell would break loose. That was HIS phrase but I do know what it means. I know that from the ONE time I arrived at the coroner at 9:05. (Hah, auto correct fittingly put that in, but it nearly was coroner time for me when I was late to the corner.)

So, it should be simple enough. Don’t be an asshole when you’re driving. Unless you’ve got another word for it.

FOOTNOTE: The cover photo was conveniently observed at the exit of my local grocery store’s parking lot today. I have titled it, “The Leaning Stop Sign of Octagonal Compliance.”

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