Aiken is a fairly small town relative to places like New York and Los Angeles. Our people love talking about their horses and land and acting like pretentious assholes. So maybe we’re not thaaaaat much different than NYC or LA. Other than our size. And if you replace horses and land with luxury cars and purses.
The point is, for being such a small place, we have a TON of impolite drivers. This may or may not support my hypothesis about drivers from up north, because I really think 90% of Aiken’s population is made up of retirees from New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
But anyway. Regardless of your home state, you should never be a rude driver. There are maybe six times in life when it’s okay to drive like a jerk: when your wife is in labor in the passenger seat, when your wife is in labor in the back seat , when you’ve found an injured animal on the side of the road and are hurrying it to a local Veterinary Hospital, when your wife is in labor and also driving the car, when your kid jumped off the roof of your house with a sheet strapped to his back because he thought it’d act like a parachute and now your kid’s legs are broken, or any combination of wives in labor, injured animals or children, and maybe the release of the Backstreet Boys’ latest album.
There are literally no other reasons to drive irresponsibly. Unless you’re drunk. Then it’s okay. But really. Where the heck do you have to be on a Wednesday afternoon that you can’t use a turn signal? What is SO urgent that you must honk at me less than TWO milliseconds after a light has turned green? Why does every other car on the road have some secret desire to make my life HELL?
This is my really quick refresher course for road rules:
1. Do not go the speed limit, even if a police car is in your general vicinity. I promise you, the PoPo doesn’t want to go 5 below. He wants to go at least 10 over. You’re not getting some special Gold Star in the law enforcement “Big Book of Drivers” if you go exactly 45 MPH. In fact, they’re probably MORE mad at you for going 3 under than if you were going 12 over. And stop looking in your rear view mirror every 5 seconds. They totally notice that. Also, that is not a real book. P.S. there is no “monthly ticket quota” and the man is not out to get you.
2. FIGURE OUT HOW YOUR CRUISE CONTROL WORKS. If you don’t have cruise control, FIGURE OUT HOW YOUR GAS PEDAL WORKS. Pick a speed and maintain it.
3. Stop cutting me off.
4. Stop pulling out in front of me and taking 30 minutes to get up to speed.
5. Basically, everyone else stay home and let me be the only car on the road.
6. Use your turn signals, especially at four-way stop signs.
7. Also learn how four-way stops work. Here’s a hint, the person who stopped first gets to make the first move. If you all get there close to the same time, the driver on the right gets to go first. If everyone gets to the stop sign at the same exact second, you play Rock Paper Scissors through your windshields to determine who has the right of way. JUST KIDDING. Someone man-up and take the initiative.
8. Everyone gets at least 15 seconds to notice a light has turned green before honking is allowed. This window narrows when it comes to short left turn arrows, but still. Allow a healthy amount of time before you rip your shirt apart and start bleeding from your ears because the light is green and you’re not moving. Yea, it’s annoying to miss a light. But before you honk, remember how annoying it is when people honk at you. Also, that’s totally not what your horn is for, unless you’re in Europe.
9. Your horn is not meant to give your car a voice. The horn is not your car’s middle finger. Sure, that’s how most of us use it, but it’s really an emergency alert designed for use in really special situations. Like…wow, that 18-wheeler is about to plow into me head on. Maybe I should let him know I’m here. That’s what your horn is for.
10. LEARN HOW TO NAVIGATE A PARKING LOT. And I don’t just mean learn how to drive up and down the aisles. I know this is hard, especially when the lanes are one way and you NEED to get that really close spot. One really good tip is to pay attention to the white lines on the pavement. Try to keep your wheels between them. Sometimes it’s easier to just pull in and throw your car into park, but if your tires are in more than three parking spaces at once, you might want to back out and try again. Also, if your car is by nature too large for a spot, you automatically lose your right to park close to the building. Go find an empty lane at the nearest truck stop and park there. Or get a normal sized vehicle. While you’re at it, read this post on global warming, you inconsiderate, backwoods, hick (canyabelieve I’m a conservative? LOL).
See y’all on the highway!