Friday, August 05, 2005

Just Park it Dumb Ass

I survived yesterday. Thank you for putting up with me and my emotional day.

I drove into work this morning with a myriad of thoughts streaming through my mind. Some of which I won't share and others are about to find their way onto this page.

I've decided that only cool people should be able to drive. Everyone else has to stay home. The reality is that if you aren't cool enough to drive then you are probably one of the ignorant people who piss me off and as such need to stay home anyway.

Portland, Oregon has, I think, nine bridges into downtown. The Willamette River separates the east side from west side. You have no choice but to cross one of these bridges to get downtown, which means access across any of those bridges in the morning can be heavy.

I was driving into work this morning down Powell which always has heavy traffic. I was amidst a long line of cars all paced together heading toward a common destination when I saw a guy in an Avalon, in the center lane, waiting to enter into traffic. I watched four or five cars who could have created a break for him pass right by.

Feeling exceptionally kind due to seven and a half hours sleep instead of my usual four or five, I slowed to let him in.

Now, if I’m making a gesture like this you’d think that a.) this asshole would be paying enough attention to jump right in – NOT; b.) get up to speed quickly enough so as to not inconvenience me following my random act of kindness – NOT and c.) would give the Thank You Wave – NOT.

I frustratingly drove behind this guy processing each act of idiocy, talking to him through each one:

“Come on, asshole, PAY ATTENTION.”

“There you go, you can do it. The accelerator is the pedal on the right. That’s it, the long one. Now USE IT.”

“Now say thank you. Give the Thank You Wave. Come on. You’re probably a selfish prick who probably doesn’t know how to please your woman either, Mr. Me-Gimme-Mine!”

I intentionally gave the No-Problem Wave just so he’d see it.

I don’t think it’s too much to ask to show a little appreciation when someone does something nice for you. Rarely do I NOT give the Thank You Wave. Even in situations where it may not have been completely necessary. Merging two lanes into one, for example. It’s going to happen…one way or another you’ll get your place in line – but still I give the wave.

And another thing, if you’re driving in the left lane and know you have to make a left-hand turn, turn your effing signal on BEFORE you get to the intersection. Give those of us behind you who don’t want to be stuck the opportunity to get around your funky ass before we’re forced to be there against our will. Plan a little.

And you know that big space Semis leave in front of their trucks? That big, huge gap between them and the car in front of them? That gap is there because it takes a lot more road space to stop 100,000 pounds than it does to stop the 3,000 pounds your gawd damn car weighs.

That space isn’t there so you can drive like an idiot and wait until the last minute to make your lane changes. I’m not saying you shouldn’t utilize that opportunity when it presents itself, I’m just saying that you need to think a little about speed and traffic conditions when you do it. Otherwise, that 18-wheeler could be your enema for the day and the last time I checked, you couldn’t put ten pounds of feed in a two pound sack.

By the way, yellow lights mean proceed with caution – there’s an impending red light coming your way. It doesn’t mean floor it (unless you’re in the cool group). For those who don’t have the wait-three-seconds rule when their light turns green and just floor it, that accident you could cause from racing through that yellow light will be YOUR fault, Mr(s). Impatience. Seriously, the grocery store isn't going anywhere, it will still be there when you do finally make it.

Besides, the people directly behind you will follow your lead. If you’re going to run the yellow light, then run the bastard. Don’t chicken out at the last minute and almost cause a rear end crash by slamming on your brakes.

Oh and it’s okay to turn right on a red if you proceed with caution. Sitting there with your blinker on only pisses everyone behind you off. Go already.

If your piece of shit car is not capable of doing the speed limit - leave it at home or get it fixed. Do not attempt to drive in the fast lane, and block all hope of those of us with functional vehicles have of ever getting anywhere.

And minivans…

Better yet, minivans in the fast lane… grrrrrr… Don’t even get me started.

And for any woman who’s ever put her make-up on in the rear view mirror… Shame on you for giving those of us who are smart enough to get up a little earlier and do it at home a bad name. Not all women are idiots like you, but somehow we get lumped into your category whenever men talk about mobile make-up application. Knock it off already.

And fellas, seriously, do you really think it’s fair that you get to shave in your car? Do that crap at home. Of course, it’s jealousy that motivates my saying this. I’d love nothing better than to prop my long ass leg up on the dashboard to shave it while I drive but that’s not a possibility. So essentially it shouldn’t be for you either.

And to the woman who brushed her long ass hair 100 times at the stop light the other day, you grossed me out. Cut that shit already. I understand OCD, but move on. It’s hair. Spiders probably crawl up it while you’re sleeping anyway.

And another thing for people who walk downtown. For the love of Betsy, people -- Now that there’s a law in effect that states drivers must wait for pedestrians to get completely across the crosswalk before they can proceed, what do you think you’re doing to the people who have been sitting there waiting for 19 gawd damn, slow ass people to leisurely stroll across the street on a yellow light while they wait to turn? By the time you slow ass fuckers make a move, the light has turned and now the one-way traffic the other direction is on the green and we’re stuck waiting through another damn light.

Be considerate. If the light blinks “Don’t walk” then don’t effing walk. Have a heart. Just because pedestrians have the right of way, doesn’t mean you should be flippant and act with such a sense of entitlement.

Though I don’t live downtown, I work downtown and have to both drive and walk within it. All you have to do is pay a little attention.

As for bicyclists. I have to give kudos where kudos are deserved. Most cyclists are experienced, conscientious, defensive drivers aware of the law and what’s going on around them. But for those fair weather cyclists who pedal in, here and there, throughout the summer in your sandals and cotton shorts – LEARN SOME GAWD DAMN HAND SIGNALS YOU IDIOTS. And realize that there may be people in the lane next to you. You aren’t the only people on the road.

It’s entirely possible that some of my sadness from yesterday manifested itself into road rage this morning. Or it could just be that us kids in the cool group are tired of the ignorant, self-serving assholes on the road. Either way, I’m still right and you should all go home now.

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