A blogger friend of mine does an occasional series on manners. While I don’t plan to start such a series of my own (but you never know), a couple of recent events have led me to address one particular manner: politeness while driving.
People seem to be in so much of a hurry that they forget their driving rules and who’s actually in the right and they just react demonstratively in anger. No, not all people, but it’s happened twice to me in the last month, so I’d like to
vent gently remind us all to chill out and be polite for Goodness sake.
A few weeks ago, as I was pulling out of Sapphire’s preschool parking lot, I looked to the left (it is a one way street) and saw that there was a stopped line of cars waiting to pull into the parking lot, so I pulled out, as much to make room for them as to make my exit. Just as I did, a motorcyclist zoomed by the stopped cars (and yes, I do mean at a fair clip) and I almost hit him. I was stunned that he came out of nowhere and was very thankful I was able to stop in time and had not hit him.
But his reaction is what really has me shaking my head. He began gesturing wildly and yelling at me. Huh? While I understand that he was upset he came close to being hit by a minivan, I would’ve expected he would be rethinking his decision to pass stopped cars. Just because you can fit in a space, it doesn’t mean you should. I also think he should have been thankful that he did not meet my bumper, or worse.
Then the other day, as I was doing a little shopping with the girls, I drove into a toy store parking lot. I was about to pull into a space when I noticed another car beginning to pull into the space directly opposite the one I was about to occupy. I stopped to make sure the other driver wasn’t pulling all the way through without noticing me. And again, what I saw shocked me. The driver did not pull through, but she was angrily shaking her head with an unfriendly expression on her face, and was yelling at me (although I couldn’t hear the words). Excuse me?? Have I missed something here? What law or even driving rule says you have the right to pull all the way through a space into the one in front of it? And what law or rule says that if you are planning on pulling through that another person does not have the right to occupy that space instead?
I know that times are bad for a lot of people right now and moods may not be all that good, but come on people. Blaming others for your missteps not only doesn’t make any sense, but it runs the risk of bringing others down with you. Maybe that’s OK with some people, but I think we’ll all be better off if we’d slow down a little, take a chill pill (as we used to say), and remember our manners. We teach our kids to take turns and be polite. It’s time adults practice what they preach. IMHO.
I know everyone has stories of others exhibiting less than stellar manners. I’d love to hear yours.