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Everything you did and did not want to know about what I see and think.

Amateur Drivers
Posted Monday, April 6th, 2009 by James Kitchens

“Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?”

--- George Carlin

As many of you know, I work at home. I like this arrangement, and not only because of my commute. It brings many benefits beyond my gas bill for the car. I get to wear bunny slippers to work (although right now, I have red and pink polka-dot slippers). I can even work in my underwear if I want. For the record, I am NOT typing this blog entry in my boxers. I haven't worked in my underwear in quite a while, to be honest. In addition to working at home, I also work at night. Like right now, as I type this, I am "working". Needless to say, the pace of the makets right now is s-l-o-w.

While all this is great, since it means that I have a nice work setup for myself, it also brings certain heretofore unknown byproducts. For example, lack of sleep. Trying to sleep during the day can be hard, especially with your neighbor's driveway right next to your window. Although, I have to admit that they don't make all that much noise thankfully. Even when I do manage to wrap up at some point during the night, I still have a 5yo kid waking me up early to go to school. I'm starting to wonder if schooling is truly necessary for our young people.

However, even with that sleep-deprived reality, the thing that was probably the biggest and unknowable byproduct was the fact that I have to drive against amateurs during the day. The professional drivers are all at work. The remaining drivers are soccer moms on iPhones, old people who stop randomly, foreigners who drive like they are in Mexico or Italy or Turkey, emergency vehicles, or contractors in a hurry. Just to be clear, old people are not good drivers. Although, I hear Bakes is a excellent driver. I had one older woman literally stop in the middle of a major street here and...just stop. I waited for about 10 seconds, then started to wonder what was happening. I considered just going around her, but thought "What if something is really wrong?" So I drove into the median lane (no one was behind us thankfully) and rolled down my passenger window. She rolled her window down after looking up, and I asked her if she was OK. She gave me a puzzled look and folded her paper (newspaper, map, or something) and kind of gave me a sideways knod of the head. Completely floored by this, I simply said "OK" and drove off. She promptly followed by re-starting her driving trip to whatever early bird buffet special she was going to that afternoon. Let's just make this as clear as possible --- SHE STOPPED IN THE MIDDLE OF A MAJOR STREET, STOPPED IN THE LANE TO READ AND WAS CURIOUS WHY I ASKED IF SHE WAS ALRIGHT.

We also get those drivers who stop right at the white line in the left turn lane when the light is green. You know, the ones who don't pull into the intersection even though they could turn left on the green light. Now, understand that I don't consider this to be such a big transgression. Maybe they have a history of getting run over by a slow-moving steamroller if they pull into an intersection. Plus, I think legally, you aren't supposed to pull into an intersection you can't clear. Fine. No problem. But when you wait for THREE ####ING GREEN LIGHTS LIKE THAT, then I have an issue. Like the woman who did that the other day.

As Danny (SmokedChub) recently pointed out, I seem to have some deep-rooted psychological issues with other drivers. Maybe I'm just too much of a Rain Man when it comes to driving........