Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Road Rage Tourette Syndrome*

* I know. Bad language is a crutch. Or some bullshit like that. And I am trying to clean up my act. But today I am reporting on a very real situation and I am being as honest and true to the experience as I possibly can. As such, be warned of the salty language that follows. Also, I am not making fun of people with Tourette Syndrome. At all.

I suffer from serious, severe Road Rage. And seeing as I drive on average 350 miles a week for work (sometimes more, sometimes less, most of it on an Interstate) this has gotten to be a problem. And I am aware that I sort of touched on this subject back in January so to the extent I repeat myself, apologies. Actually - no apologies. Some of this stuff just needs to be repeated over and over and over and over until the FUCKING MORONS WHO DRIVE ME CRAZY ON THE ROAD AND MAKE IT MISERABLE FOR EVERYBODY ELSE GET A CLUE (Of course not you darling readers. You don't do that sort of thing.)!

(Yes this is going to be another ranty post that involves LOTS OF ALL CAPS and perhaps a salty word or two. And I know you were probably going to say something snarky like: "Oh - is it that time of the month?" And I was all set to be like - "NO! How dare you insinuate that this week's rantiness is tied to my hormones." But alas, it is that time of the month and perhaps that is why I am so ranty this week. Or maybe not. Maybe this is just one of those weeks where rantiness is all the rage. Speaking of rage...)


1) You are NOT passing
3) You are a truck driver. Ever. This should be mandatory law.
4) You are trying to do something else while driving: talk on phone, eat a hamburger, smoke a cigarette, discipline your kids, watch a DVD, pat your head and chew gum (at the same time), etc.
5) SOMEBODY ELSE IS GOING FASTER THAN YOU! I don't care if you're doing 80 in a 65 and passing everybody. If I come behind you doing 85, Rules of Road dictate that YOUR ASS GETS OVER TO THE RIGHT LANE PRONTO!!! (And no mom and dad - I don't ever drive 85mph - especially if the speed limit is 65mph. This is all hypothetical. For blog purposes. And for entertainment purposes.)

Truck drivers are the worst. They absolutely kill me. First of all, most of the national companies put speed governators on so that the trucks can't go above over a certain speed limit. And while the drivers know how to get around them, there is a limit to how fast you can go WHEN YOU ARE DRIVING A 2-TON TRUCK ON 18 WHEELS. Actually, I don't know how much an 18-wheeler weighs and I am too lazy to look it up. But for the purposes of this discussion, they weigh 2-tons.

Anyways, there's nothing worse than cruising along at 75mph when all of a sudden some asshole idiot truck driver decides he needs to show off how big his dick is pass the truck driver in front of him and so he swings over into your lane, cutting you off, causing you to have a mini Tourette's outburst (usually something along the lines of "You asshole" or "Motherfucker"), and then you're stuck behind him for longer than you care because he can't get it up (the truck that is - over the speed limit), and you're now going SLOWER than the speed limit which is a serious pet peeve, and you try to be zen about the whole thing because really, what are you going to do, but you can't help it and the Tourette's picks up with speed and saltiness (I'll spare you), and for whatever reason the dude on the right is now whipping his dick out picking up speed so that the 2 trucks are neck and neck, and now you are going absolutely INSANE because you are trying TO GET SOMEWHERE and not fucking watch this pathetic display of limp dick two trucks who can't get it up (their trucks to the speed limit that is), and HOLY HELL you are now screaming and cursing at the top of your lungs, and just praying that this nightmare ends soon, and OMG - WHY CAN'T YOU BE ZEN ABOUT THIS, but you just can't, and finally, finally, finally, one of the trucks (usually the one on the left), manages to pass the other one, and you hope to Hell that he actually gets back over to the right lane WHERE HE BELONGS, and usually he does, although sometimes he doesn't because he's a PRICK, and then you have to pass him on the right, but either way you pass him, and on one occasion you actually honked (the asshole nearly killed you when he cut over to YOUR lane and he rode in the left lane for like 10 minutes because he was just being a total dick), and usually there's another road rage induced round of Tourette's where the cuss words just fly out of your mouth uncontrollably, and then finally you get around everyone and you understand what they are talking about in NASCAR when they talk about "the clean air."

So yes, most of the time when I am trapped behind a truck I am a cussing, shouting lunatic and you would be horrified to know me. Probably. And yes - I am aware that my behavior is pretty much INSANE and that it does no one any good. So on occasion, I do try be zen about the whole thing and sometimes I can pull it off but lots of times I can't.

And then I wonder why I am so angry and frustrated about everything. And really, how much time am I losing? Three minutes? Five minutes? Seven minutes? And is that time equal in value to the emotional drain I suffer freaking out?

What about you? Do you suffer from Road Rage? Is there something else in the universe that drives you absolutely insane to the point where you sometimes feel like you can't cope?

Ok. I just went back and re-read this post. I am not as freaky as I sound. Really. I am actually a sweet, loving, patient, compassionate, nurturing, elegant, gentle, quiet, demure, angelic soul who would never hurt a fly. But occasionally I feel like kicking the ever loving shit out of a truck driver.

And if that ain't country, I'll kiss your...

PS I just decided that for every comment received on this post in the next 5 days (so through June 15th), I will donate $1 to the National Tourette Syndrome Association.

PPS Also, for every comment received on this post, I vow to be TOTALLY ZEN the next time I get stuck behind a slow moving truck in the left lane.

So please comment kids. You'll be contributing to medical research AND my sanity. How often can you do that?


Elizabeth aka @APMonkey said...

I agree 100% with #5 on your list. Unless they've got blue lights in/on their car and are sworn law enforcement officers it's not their job to play traffic cop and decide how fast is fast enough FOR ME. Like you said, I don't care how fast they're going, if I want to go faster they need to get out of the way. Period.

The other driving issues that piss me off are people who can't merge properly (they just drive in the merge lane until it ends and then assume the regular lane automatically becomes theirs), and people who think putting on their signal to change lanes ENTITLES them to change lanes RIGHT THEN whether it's actually safe to do so or not.

Nenette AM said...

Did those obnoxious left lane drivers have a Manitoba licence plate by chance? I seriously didn't realize how crappy Winnipeg drivers are until we moved to Vancouver, BC. Yikes! We suck!
Lesson learned. I'm a good driver girl now.

I totally agree with everything you said. And what Elizabeth said too.

In addition, I'd also like to add to the Moron Drivers' Walk of Fame the morons who do not completely go into the turning lane before turning, thus leaving their asses in whole or in part in my lane and forcing me to stop and wait until they complete their turn and move said asses.

These things also matter when I'm NOT PMS'ing. Ahem.

Linda said...

Don't even try to think about in St Louis!! St Louisans don't care period!!!

AndreAnna said...

Considering my 3-yr old daughter told a women in the aisle at the supermarket that "green means go people!" I'd say yes.

harmzie said...

I like to think that I don't, but I often hear my chirpy kids from the back saying "who are you talking to?"

And one time: "Mom, did you just say the 'F' word?" me: "No, I did not" her: "oh, I thought I heard that" me: "no, you must be mistaken" her: "oh. ok" (so busted)

I don't so much mind not speeding, but I abhor non-assertive driving. They think it's safe b/c it's slow, but I'd much rather face another driver who commits to a lane or a turn and then just *takes* it. None of this drifting here and there; coming to a complete stop before making A RIGHT TURN; "do I want that lane? ooohhh!!! I don't know!".

An assertive driver is often mistaken for an aggressive driver, and I think it's just semantics (except that I would say an aggressive driver would be far less courteous) In my experience, the assertive/aggressive driver is far more aware of their surroundings and able to quickly react.

And speaking of courtesy!!! Why is it crucially important that you get that one car-length in front of me when there's NO ONE behind me??? Also, if you see from two blocks back that the lane disappears due to (a) parked car (b) construction (c) just disappears, get in line like everyone else! You're not getting in in front of me. (foreign plates? rental car? Friendly Manitoba, baby, come on in!)

Any other situation - just the flow of traffic, I'll let you in when you signal. But TAKE THE GODDAM LANE FERCRISSAKES!!! I'm not going to gift-wrap it for you...

[Ahem] And thank you for allowing me this guest-post! Are you donating by the inch? ;-)

debb said...

Having just returned from a 3,000 mile road trip, I absolutely applaud this post.

The driving in the left lane actually seems more prominent in the South.

This year the truckers seem out-of-control. Hello? The road does not belong to you, despite your over inflate ego beliving that if you thinks so it will be so.

We take a minimum of two of these trips a year. Sometimes more. It seems that the motorist (moronist) get worse with each passing year. Not to mention the never ending construction on I-40.

Living out west with family in the south, I can honestly say in all of my 35 years of trips I have never crossed the entire distance without a majority of one or more states in road construction and also rest stop construction. Hello? People take note, we all have to pee at some point and if you are in er..North Texas where there are not even cows for 200 miles....I am willing if not obligated to squat on the side of the road.

As a matter of fact on our recent trip home, we had a blow-out 35 miles from town, there had been no RR facilities anywhere in the past 30 miles, so to all those traveling east and got a nice shot of a lily-shite lard ass...BLAME your state planners.

Thanks for the HOT TOPIC.

Nancy said...

Hey! Come on up to Connecticut where trucks are YES! PROHIBITED FROM THE LEFT LANE! Unless of course it's a left hand exit or when we come up to big city areas.
My biggest pet peeve is people who refuse to use their turn signals. Or are talking on the phone and drifting around to either side of their lane scaring the shit out of me and causing me to shake my fist at them as I drive by. Or people who treat stop signs as slow down and if no one is there, just go. Or if I'm turning right at a stop sign you mean I have to stop?
Or people who fly by me like I'm standing still - as I'm cruising at 80 mph! I nearly got my ass clipped by some asshole who went from the right lane, diagonally across the middle lane to the left lane in about 2/10th of a second. I looked in my rear view mirror - nothing - and all of a sudden saw this car nearly rear ended me. I would have been dead if I had let up on the gas for any reason.
Or people that ride my bumper for absolutely no reason what so ever. My husband had an extreme road rage moment when a driver was riding our bumper (of a Suburban no less!) and then came around and cut in front of us. My husband SPED UP AND WAS PUSHING HIS CAR FROM BEHIND IN THE LEFT LANE. I meanwhile was in the passenger seat SCREAMING at him to stop it with visions of leaving our son an orphan. It has never.happened.again.

Country Girl said...

@AP Monkey - Yes - people who can't merge are sucktastic. In fact, I have perma-scars from merging-related issues I can't even discuss (and that's saying a lot because I don't hold a lot back).

@Nen - driver of cars which stick their asses out over multiple lanes because they don't have their shit together make me stabby. Yes - stabby is my new fave word. Thanks lady.

@MM I want to co-opt your daughter and make her my own. Also, douchenozzle was classic. Being added to the repetoire stat!

@Linda Avoiding St. Louis. Clearly.

@Harmzie Holy Hell your comment made me laugh. Out. Loud. #refusestotypelolbecauseitfeelslame. And yes - I hate people who ride the "about to be closed lane" longer than they should. They should be shot. Or poisoned. Or just run off the road.

@debb "Moronist." Yes - I'll be repeating that a time or two.

@Nancy I might just move to (and never leave) CT if it means TRUCKERS CAN NEVER BE IN THE LEFT LANE! HELL YEAH!

kyooty said...

Commenting for Torrette Syndrome cause well that's all i've got. In NS the have signs that say Keep Right except to Pass, on all the highways!

Fiona Picklebottom said...

I don't get road rage per se. I get a flash of "if it was legal to kill you I would" and then I go back into my typical nonchalant, apathetic way of being. Apathy has a bad rap; I think it is a wonderful thing and I totally embrace it. Because fuck it, who cares, I'm not going to waste my time thinking about it. Unless it's people who write "should of" and "would of" instead of the correct "should have" and "would have." Those people piss me off. I would go back and read your post to make sure you didn't do that here, but I am too lazy. If you did, I don't mean YOU obviously. In YOUR case, it would be an accident, since I know you know better.