I’ve seen most every kind (I could ever imagine) of idiot on the road since moving to Dallas (TX) in 1984. Sadly, the [driving] conditions are becoming progressively worse now that smart-phones have become so popular.
These devices not only give people the opportunity to text and drive but to check a multitude of apps on their phone (such as Twitter, Facebook and online games, just to name a few). The “addicted” are never out of touch with their digital lives.
Traffic and road rage is a growing problem here in Dallas. Road construction is a part of the problem but the ever-growing number of cars on the road should be our primary focus. People’s unwillingness to pay attention to what is going on around them, combined with ever-increasing traffic, road construction and repairs (because our city engineers cannot finish one freaking project before starting three dozen others)… These things are making all of us more and more stressed, angry and insensitive.
(For what it’s worth, here is a wonderful link for discovering where road construction and repair projects are going on in the State of Texas.)
I’m not saying people can’t return a quick text when they’re waiting for a signal light to change to green (provided you have WONDERFUL peripheral vision and are aware of when the light changes). However, when the light does change to green, DON’T sit there on your ass finishing a text message, holding everyone up behind you in the process. Put the damned phone down and DRIVE. Pay attention to what’s going on around you and remember that, first and foremost your attention and your priorities should be on safely maneuvering your vehicle from Point A to Point B —- all while minding the road rules and practicing just the tiniest smidgeon of damned courtesy. (Allow others to merge into the lane in front of you when they’re nice enough to use their signal lights, asshole. You might want the same favor returned to you one day.)
IDEALLY, you won’t text behind the wheel; even at a red light. If you are driving, DRIVING should be your #1 priority. Not texting, applying makeup, shaving, reading the business reports for your morning meeting (the ones you should have read the night before or while having breakfast) or reading the morning newspaper.
I once saw a man trying to juggle a cup of coffee, an electric shaver AND a newspaper, all while purportedly paying attention to the road he was traveling upon. That man was a freaking danger to himself and all who were in his vicinity!!! I got the hell away from his vehicle as quickly as I could.
When I initially moved to Texas, the drivers (with the exception of those in Houston and in Austin) did not seem as bad. In fact, MANY were downright polite but as the years have progressed, driving has become more of a chore and much less enjoyable. The metroplex (Dallas, Fort Worth and the surrounding suburbs/cities) has grown exponentially with the migration of hundreds and thousands of new residents each day; I can’t help but link the changes in driving habits to the addition of these new drivers now maneuvering our roadways.
What I’m about to say will likely come across as “regional prejudice” but if the shoe fits, wear it.
A good many of those migrating into the state of Texas hail from our neighboring states to the north and to the east (yes, Yankees). Mulling over why drivers have become increasingly rude and inconsiderate here in Texas, one cannot disregard the presence of these “new drivers” who have travelled from the east and to the north of us.
To put it another way, the prevailing change in attitude has presented itself ALONG WITH an onslaught of Yankees and you people can’t drive worth a #### (sorry but it’s true). You make me want to replace my vehicle with a “monster truck” so that I can simply run your sorry, inattentive, rubbernecking arse over (but I digress).
Along those lines, please consider yourself placed “in detention” until such time as you can drive responsibly without gawking at the accident on the other side of the medium (thus causing a shit-storm for the flow of traffic on our side), can effectively merge and you are willing to allow those signaling (that they too would like to merge into another lane of traffic) to do so safely without feeling as though you’re a total asshole.
Thanks for visiting,Michael