Not long ago, I nearly ran over a co-worker in our parking lot because his body was completely hidden by my car’s left A-pillar – the post that connects the windshield to the front door and includes a grab handle on the inside in case – I suppose – I want to hold tight when I drive over a roller-coaster road. I saw him when he started to step in front of me, though, so he and my bumper are still intact.
Every day is an adventure when you’re driving, isn’t it? We never know what’s behind the next bend of Adventure Highway.
Just this morning, a car ran a stop sign on the two-lane road that connects my house to the highway. When I pulled up beside the car, the young driver was furtively glancing all around and sipping coffee, as though she were dodging spies on the way to work.
Like a school bus, I stop at all stop signs. It seems like that’s what they meant when they painted all those octagonal signs.
Sure, it’s the law, but it’s also common sense. If I didn’t stop, I would be in prison by now for hitting one or more of the bicyclists who whiz by on the road – or the sidewalk! If I rolled through the signs, my grille would have “Schwinn” written on it.
We all have seen a lot of bikes on the roads lately because of sporting events, but it doesn’t take a triathlon to put two wheels and four wheels on a collision course. That’s a daily hazard.
As I commuted in the right lane the other morning, I noticed that an SUV up ahead was blocking the passing lane. Cars would build up behind it before their frustrated drivers could catch a break in traffic and zip to the right. I didn’t want to go plowing up snakes, so I stayed back safely in the slow lane.
As we stopped at the next traffic light, I laughed out loud when I saw the bad driver’s license plate: a specialty tag for biking enthusiasts that read across the top: “Share the road.”
That guy’s vehicle was an oxymoron on wheels.
“Share the road yourself,” I thought as the light turned green and the passing-lane hog plodded on his way, still in the left lane.
The day before, a really nice rain had fallen. The sky had darkened and the road filled up quickly with standing water. It was a mess, made messier by the drivers who felt no need to turn on their headlights.
You’ve seen them, or almost seen them: the dark cars that don’t stand out on dark roads.
Using your headlights in reduced light is, again, not only the law but also smart. It’s what the old TV commercials used to harp about: defensive driving. (Years ago, I complained to a legislator in another state about the need for a “lights on when raining” law, so he asked me to write it for him. It took the state years to adopt the law. Years!)
You can’t legislate intelligence, though, so we still have to be on the lookout for all those other people who share the road.