Don’t be one, but you are one.

You will be a bad driver until you have about ten years of practice. Nearly everyone overestimates their competence as new drivers, so try to remember, you are not very good at this, truly.

marc falardeau on flickr
marc falardeau on flickr

Some drivers never learn. They are the ones who don’t care or don’t realize they scare you by making sudden and inexplicable maneuvers.

Impulse driving like backing up on exit ramps, swerving wildly when a turn was missed or trying to fit a vehicle in a space that doesn’t exist indicates that the driver is a frustrated time traveler and wants to force situations to be what they think they should have been. Or something.

Try to be civil. As tempting as car language can be, don’t be like me. I know you have enjoyed the times I screeched about someone being an Inconsiderate Ass Bucket or an Manicured Fart-Hoarder, but resist the urge and be like your sister. She contains her commentary by calling everyone “Friend,” e.g. “I see you, Friend,” and “Hello, Friend, welcome to my lane.” When you call everyone “Friend” it magically makes everything calmer.

You will lose control of a vehicle someday. With this in mind, familiarize yourself with what out-of-control cars can do. They zig, they zag, they flip, they tip.

Also, please do not ever tell me about the time you lost control and nearly went off that cliff. Yermom does not wanna know.

Don’t worry about being slow. With very few exceptions, keeping your speed down is safer. The faster you go, the fewer choices you have. A slower car can swing through a grassy area to avoid a collision, when a speeding car will be thrown into oncoming traffic by the exact same patch of grassy shoulder.

Tailgaters are going to happen. You can’t teach them anything. They do not care that they are upsetting you, they are not upset by your brake lights. The best strategy is to get away from people who make you feel like a tow truck. You can only drive one car at a time.

The best lesson my father gave me on driving was to remind me very sternly that the object of driving is getting to your destination, not playing games with crazy people or competing with idiots in big metal boxes.

Consider yourself sternly reminded every time you buckle up.


2 Replies to “What can I do about bad drivers?”

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