A Call to Honk.

Friends.  Family.  People who I talk to on Facebook but not in real life.  Blog browsers.

We face today a seemingly insurmountable problem.  Every day tempers are lost and days are ruined over this serious issue.  People yell and hit things and kind of act like a-holes.  Incredulous shrugs are shared with friends and coworkers and swear-words are launched, missile-like, from spluttering, slathering mouths.

I speak, of course, of rush hour.  A problem, of course, exacerbated by what is actually, of course, the insurmountable problem I originally referred to.  Bad drivers.

I’ve been ruminating on this very serious issue for a very long two-months of being a life-hating commuter, and I flip flop between what the appropriate response to bad drivers is.

The first option is to treat every driver on every road like a 16-year old tourist.

Is someone trying to move from the left lane to the right hand exit in a sixteenth of a mile?  They have never been here before!  Slow your roll and let them through!

Is there a giant SUV that just sped up to at least two times the speed of traffic in order to ensure that they could merge in front of you in a stand still instead of the person behind you?  It’s just a kid!  They probably forgot which pedal was which!  It’s safer to have them in front of you!  How lucky that they made that mistake right before they changed lanes!

Did someone just skip two miles worth of stand still traffic to budge into your lane at the last minute?  Let’em in.  They have probably had their blinker on for miles and they didn’t have the confidence to merge until it was almost too late.

This is clearly the kind option.  But it’s also the same old defensive driving bullshit that we were fed by our driving teachers back in high school, and, friendsicles, I gotta break it to you, that shit has its limit.

Now, before all you a-hole drivers think that I’m about to condone swerving from lane to lane, speeding like a maniac and cutting people off, slow your roll.  Because what I’m actually advocating a balance.  You know what would be awesome?  If people drove like a team instead of like a bunch of individuals, because we kind of sort of make a loosely organized team when we’re all in the same place at the same time.  Your goal, as a car, should not be to always stay ahead of everyone around you.  Your goal should be to make sure that traffic stays at approximately the same speed for as long as all of us are stuck on the roads with each other.

This, friends, is why what I advocate for is honking.  Every single time someone does something stupid, lay on your horn and if you are lucky enough to make eye contact with the person you are honking at, make a genuinely puzzled and judgmental “What are you doing face?”

Because we all know that you’re not supposed to cross white lines.  We all know that you cannot drive on the shoulder.  We are all pissed that we just waited in a line of cars that was not moving for 45 minutes because people like you decide to “improve traffic flow” by not getting into the lane they need to be in until the most inconvenient moment for the people who are already in that lane.  Merge when it’s not going to make anyone brake, not right before you need to exit, losers.  We all know that the left lane is a passing lane, not a “I exit this way in five miles and am uncomfortable going faster than 10 less than the speed limit” lane.

Why honking, you ask.  Honking is annoying and counterproductive and leads to noise pollution, you say.

Well.  Because I think we should honk at people who deserve it.  That dude who totally cut you off for no reason?  He knows he did something wrong.  That lady who is tailing you like a maniac and is probably going to rear end you the moment you take your foot off the accelerator?  She’s being a jerk.

And you have the means to TELL THESE PEOPLE that they suck with one push of a (sometimes very difficult to push) button.  So you should do that.  Because it embarrasses people.  Sometimes it also makes people mad, but mostly, in my not super informed opinion, it makes people stop (or swerve) at least for a moment.

And maybe, just maybe, if enough of us honk at each other to call out our shoddy driving, we’ll be able to graduate to Japan-level highwaycommunication in which we do adorable things like flash our hazards at people as a way of saying “Thanks for letting me into your lane.  We make a good commuter team, you and me and everyone else on this highway.”

I don’t mean to harp on the whole commuting thing, but it has only recently become a part of my life and, dudes, it sucks.

Especially because all y’all suck.  And I am going to honk at every single one of you and make you feel bad because you deserve it.  And I also deserve it if I do something stupid.  Which I don’t because I’m an awesome driver and, like, follow the law and shit.

Flashing hazards at each other will be effing adorable!  We might get there!

(THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I HAVE GOALS TO BLOG ON CERTAIN DAYS AND ACTUALLY FOLLOW THROUGH.  RIDICULOUS BLOGS ENCOURAGING PEOPLE TO HONK AT EACH OTHER.  #HOORAH)

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