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Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by ThomasC, May 24, 2003.
The title of a letter to my hometown paper, The Columbus Dispatch:
I'd love to hear both sides of that story. I detect more than a little self-righteousness in that writeup and wonder if all the facts are both present and/or accurate.
Actually, I can believe the story. Some nutcase caused me trouble a month or so ago on the road. It happens, and I usually chalk it up to someone driving after having a bad argument or after hearing some devastating news. The guy behind me was trying to take out his rage on me. I luckily avoided any confrontation.
Josh, saying someone is self-righteous is a slap in the face rejection. People hate that. I don't want to be a hippocrite, so I hope I just read you wrong.
Sounds like a variation of the old "Gang Initiation" Urban Legend.
If this story is true, probably the key event was the letter writer flashing his lights "to let him know he was clear". The driver of the other car probably interpreted the lights flashing as a "punishment" for passing, and that sent them over the edge.
I think every one of us that drives a car on a daily basis has a story like the one above we can tell. At least one. The fact the above person took the time to write it up and spread it around says to me that there's quite a bit of righteous indignation on his part. That in turn tells me the story is being told from a very emotional and defensive point of view.
Unless the original poster knows the person who wrote that, I have my doubts about it even being legit. Sounds like Snopes material to me.
If it is real, all I'm saying is I'd definitely want to hear both sides of what happened before making any judgements about who wronged who. It usually takes inciteful moves on both parts to create a road rage incident.
Inciteful moves on both parts: Car behind inches closer and closer to your rear end while you are stopped in front of it and at a red light. Car roars past you when light turns green and you flash your lights at this car.
This IS inciteful moves on both parts, and the light-flashing was misinterpreted by the car in question. This simple act of light-flashing, or even honking your horn these days, will most likely be interpreted as an insult to the other driver, resulting in some very bad road behavior. No one is safe anymore. I see this stuff too often. Everyone feels entitled to have the right-of-way, even if the light is red.
We're all acting like spoiled children behind the wheel today. This kind of behavior has to stop. It's just not funny anymore.
Jeff - i agree with your last sentence.
there is only one thing I wish people would understand more than anything else -
Slower. Traffic. Keep. Right.
If you are camped out with a teepee and a recliner in the left lane, you are definitely going to be on the receiving end of hostility from less than patient and intelligent drivers.
Yeah I was gonna say the whole light flashing thing is nothing more than a farce and if a cop told you otherwise then that shows the complete inadequecy and lack of intelligence in our law enforcement community. As much crap I'm going to get for saying this I dont care so here goe's. I will be the first person to chase your ass all over town if you put my life in danger on the road. I had a guy in a truck nearly push me off into a ditch because he wasn't paying attention, I had my mom and my wife in the car I chased his stupid ass for over 20 minutes through a neighborhood which he did not know and I fortunately lived in. Moral of the story I bet he'll be a lot more careful now in driving. As I always tell my father when he tells me to drive safe " I will its the 1.5 million other idiots on the road you have to worry about" People out there need to learn they're weilding a 2000+ lb weapon when they're doing stupid sh** on the road especially the idiots that buy a $50,000+ SUV who live in areas where they dont even need one and never intend to do any real use of it and only own for a status symbol. I've been a strong believer for years that you should be required on a national level to obtain a special liscence to drive an SUV much like a CDL.
Sound like an urban legend to me. Very suspicious indeed.
there are worse things to be afraid of here in Washington state like a 4'11" woman driving a Ford Excursion while talking on a cell phone and not paying attention to what shes doing at 75MPH in her SUV, or the Doctor doing 80MPH in his Mercedes Benz while eatinga slice of pizza off a plate he's trying to balance while keeping his car straight.
And surprise assholes like the one in the truck weave in and out of rush hour traffic thats doing 45 at 70+ MPH because who knows why maybe to get a real vehicle point of the matter is that calling the cops does nothing taking matters into your own hands does everything!.
"stop and pop"
I hate all that gang nonsense.
If that happened to me I would try and get away of course. but if it came to shooting at least I could shoot back.
As a pedestrian and public transit user, I am amazed at the difference in aggression of drivers in different parts of town. I live in Toronto. For eight months I lived at Lawrence West station, and for the past nine months I've lived two stops south, at Eglinton West station. That's less than five minutes by subway or car.
At Lawrence, the drivers were almost always curteous and safe at crosswalks and intersections, and more often than not obeyed the signals. At Eglinton, I have lost count of the number of times I have been nearly hit by idiots running the red or making aggressive left turns or, worst of all, failing to stop at stop signs.
I will describe a very telling incident in my neighborhood from nearly two months ago. First, I will tell you that it's pretty hard to not see me: I'm six foot one, and at the time I was wearing a red and grey three quarter length snowboard jacket with reflective piping along the arms. I also had vibrant blue hair (for Blue Jays opening day). I press the "cross" button and wait for the light to change. Light for oncoming cars turns red, three seconds later my pedestrian light turns green. I step out. The front car has stopped, but another car pulls up behind him, honking and flashing his high beams. The guy in front rolls down his window and yells, "What?" The flashing guy rolls down his and shouts, "Just drive through!" I step past the front car so I am now absolutely without question visible to the second driver and shout, "What do you want him to do, kill me?" The second driver shouts back, "Fuck you." Apparently, he did.
I am quite greatful to that first driver, as I have had to jump out of the way of cars a number of times as they run the red at this light, and I would have had to do the same again. One of these times I will not be so lucky.
The police have set up a trap at this location more than once, but the officer manning it the last time told me that they only got maybe a quarter of the guys running the light because so many were doing it -- they'd pull one over, and three more would go through while they were ticketing the first.
A second story: My street is a one-way street. About half way down the street there is a little island that juts out to cut the width of the street in half, supposedly to slow down traffic taking shortcuts through the residential streets. The sidewalk is only on one side, and the oldest trees have buckled it in a number of places so that it slopes down towards the road. It is difficult to clear the snow from these areas, so they become ice traps. As a result, everyone who lives on the street walks on the road in the winter, to avoid a nasty fall. It only took one of those to convince me to do the same.
So, I'm walking down the street towards my house, in the direction of traffic, on the left side -- the same side that the little island is on. I see headlights coming up behind me, and I am at the island, so I step off of the road and onto it, and stop, waiting for the car to pass. The car begins to flash its lights at me, and then honk, as if I am in the way. I point to the "hazard" sign on the island, in case they hadn't seen that there was an island in the middle of the street. They honk more and speed up at me, so I step onto the closest lawn and watch the car smack into the island at high speed, a full car-width away from the right hand side of the road (if it were a two-way street, they would have been driving into oncoming traffic). They bounce up and over it, making a huge noise, and drive off down the street.
I suppose they were trying to show me that pedestrians should never, ever be on the road. I sure hope they did some real damage to their car.
What can I do? Once I poured my coffee all over the front of a car where the driver was paying no attention and drove out at me because she saw a break in traffic ahead of her through the intersection, but that was because she actually bumped my arm and made me spill it, but she was indignant enough ("Look what you've done to my car!") that it made me consider it as an appropriate solution. I really don't know. I was told that filing reports would be futile without a number of witnesses -- that I'd just waste a day or two in court and nothing would happen to the driver.