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Why Are There People Like Frank? - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
cbertsch
cbertsch
Why Are There People Like Frank?
The drive up to Phoenix to pick up my sister and her son was relatively easy and the return trip even smoother. But I still had to deal with a dozen of those drivers, typically in pick-ups and SUVs, who come speeding up on you in the fast lane and tailgate you at 80mph, even though it's obvious that there's a long stream of cars ahead to prevent you from driving any faster, then try to pass you on the right, no matter how tight a squeeze, because they are desperate to get one car length further ahead. They risk so much for so little. I'm an excellent driver, but my performance decreases markedly when I have to pay half my attention to the antics playing out in my rearview mirror. It's like I'm intoxicated by their stupidity. Perhaps I'd be better served conducting myself the way they do, i.e. as if the rest of the vehicles on the road were no more substantial than one's opponents in a video game.

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Current Location: 85704

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Comments
derdriu From: derdriu Date: November 23rd, 2007 09:57 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Despite how utterly terrible the drivers in Boston are, I definitely do not miss those drivers in Arizona. I haven't noticed that particularly cute behavior on the Boston highways/streets.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 24th, 2007 04:35 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I grew up hearing about how bad Mass drivers are, because my mom spent her summers on the Cape. But it's a different sort of aggression. And the roads are to blame. There's no excuse on I-10.
nondescriptgirl From: nondescriptgirl Date: November 23rd, 2007 10:09 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Yes.

Oh my god, I couldn't agree more. I hate those tailgater/right-lane-passer jerkos! But here's what I love (and it only happens once in a while) ... you're in that left lane behind the line of cars trying to pass, and that jerko goes into the right lane to attempt the one car length squeeze in, then the car in the right lane just ahead of the jerko slows down just enough to not let him fit in front of you. That's when I hold steady, side by side with that car, so Jerko can't go ANYWHERE. It's this weird automatic alliance that forms, cars teaming up, drivers with the same unspoken goal of stopping the bully jerkos in their tracks. It's a beautiful thing. But ... all the other cars coming up behind you get the shaft as well. Which is why the blockade can only last so long. And then, unfortunately, Jerko gets to fly by, usually with a particular finger outstretched and, amazingly enough, with a deluded air of victory replacing any humiliation that may have painted his face only moments earlier.

For the stress all this causes it does seem to make that long boring drive to Phoenix go a little bit faster, in my opinion.
flw From: flw Date: November 24th, 2007 11:52 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Yes.

Having driven across the country about six or eight times, with numerous short trips besides, I have experienced this as well. What is always amusing to me is when... three or four minutes later I end up passing the hot head. People who speed and engage in this kind of dangerous behavior never seem to use their cruise control. They define their speed relative to those around them. So, when they get past everyone they tend to release their white-knuckle anger grip on their steering wheels, relax, sit back, think about how everyone else are assholes... and slow down to 60 mph.

I cannot tell you how many times people have blown by me at 85 or 90 mph five or six times a day. They go fast, and then they pull off more frequently to rest, and they take longer during their rest stops, because they are so nervous from having almost been in ten accidents. Then they get back in their cars, hammer it, and pass you again... and then stop again and pass again and stop again...

"slow" and steady wins the race.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 25th, 2007 02:28 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Yes.

You're so right about that. It makes me insane with rage to see them tooling along at a slower pace after they nearly cause a ten-car pileup, even though I should just laugh. This is why I don't carry a ___.
flw From: flw Date: November 25th, 2007 10:50 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Yes.

Don't go there, girlfriend. What helps me to cope with these people is to remember that they are irrational infants who are in pain.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 24th, 2007 04:36 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: Yes.

You capture that experience perfectly! The risk I run is getting locking in a battle of wills in which I refuse to grant them that victory. Stupid, on my part, but intoxication works that way.
elizabeg From: elizabeg Date: November 23rd, 2007 11:47 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I totally have that problem--intoxicated by the tailgater. Even though I know the thing you're supposed to do in such situations is ensure that if the jackass hits you that you aren't close enough to whoever's in front of you that you'll hit them--which means slow up if necessary--I always find myself paying more attention to the jackass behind me than the person in front of me. Thankfully, I catch myself in intoxication before I miss the person in train in front braking for who knows what and nothing desperately bad happens. But I hate those drivers--and I hate them even more when they're driving oversized gas guzzlers and don't even know how to keep the thing in their own lane when they try to pass.

On an entirely different note, however--HAPPY BELATED THANKSGIVING!
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 25th, 2007 02:29 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Belated back at you!

I like this intoxication by what lies behind concept. It's like Orpheus on the freeway or something.
elizabeg From: elizabeg Date: November 25th, 2007 08:22 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Have you been reading my mind? I think so. Orpheus has been intoxicating me very much lately. I'll explain more later.
tpratt From: tpratt Date: November 24th, 2007 03:06 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I love drivers like that. Their shenanigans put food on my table.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: November 24th, 2007 04:37 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I bet. It's amazing to me how many accidents there are in these parts.
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