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Saturday, June 4, 2011

A few letters to my fellow drivers

On my way in to work this morning, as with every morning, I experienced myriad levels of incompetence through the drivers around me. As I contemplated why these drivers were behaving in such a manner, a thought suddenly occurred: It's not them; it's me. Yes, the reverse break-up speech perfectly explains why I get angry at other drivers - the problem is with me and my narrow-minded ways of viewing the road and traffic. I feel the only way to rectify this situation is to apologize to the people I was angry at this morning, so here we go:

Dear SUV Driver Who Cut Me Off And Then Slammed On Your Brakes:

I just wanted to apologize for my anger this morning regarding the incident where I mentally accused you of cutting me off and then coming to a stop for no apparent reason. You see, I forgot an important rule learned in Driver's Ed: If you have your blinker on, you can automatically move into the desired lane without first stopping to see if there is actually space to accomodate your terrifyingly giant car. For some reason, this rule escaped me when I was slamming on my own brakes in an attempt to remain alive as you joined me in the lane that three dozen other cars and I had been selfishly occupying. If I had remembered the Magical Blinker Rule, which covers all blinker actions in the US, Canada, and Narnia, I would have of course made ample room for you, as I had a lot of it to spare. Also, congrats on securing a Magic Blinker - I am still using the conventional blinkers that require you to wait for a space to open up before you switch lanes. You are clearly an entrepreneurial genius.

As far as you slamming on your brakes, I realized that that, too, was my fault. There was a lot of traffic around you; of course when you came into my lane and found yourself in cramped quarters due to the complete lack of room for your car, you had no choice but to hit the brakes until more space was available. I totally understand, and I am ashamed to think that I honked at you in an attempt to make you aware of the hundred other cars who also had to hit their brakes in turn. I hope we can move past this, and I look forward to suddenly stopping behind you in the future.

Dear Sedan Driver Who Had The Great Idea Of Stopping To Gawk At A Fender-Bender:

I can't tell you how chagrined I feel right now after being furious with you this morning when you came to almost a complete stop in 40 mph traffic in order to gaze upon a traffic collision. You see, as it was only a fender-bender and there was clearly no one hurt at all, I thought you might just be stopping so you could satisfy your own selfish and somewhat disturbing need to view the calamaties of others. However, I later realized that you were probably only trying to help and perhaps slow down enough to jump out of your car and aid the passengers and/or the HEROs unit that had already arrived. One could argue that the presence of a HEROs unit versus an actual ambulance should inform you that the accident and subsequent injuries really weren't that serious; however, such thinking is simple and closed-minded. We need more people like you to stop traffic to see if there is possibly any way whatsoever to glimpse an injury help those who are so obviously struggling. Don't let go of that giving spirit.

Dear Rusty Truck Driver Who Tailgated Me For Two Miles In Rush-Hour Traffic:

You can imagine my embarrassment as I replay the events that occurred on the interstate this morning. For some reason, when I looked in my rearview mirror and was unable to see your headlights (as they were so close to my back bumper we probably could have connected our cars with a piece of Juicy Fruit), I became terrified that you would be unable to stop in time when, inevitably, traffic slowed and I had to step on my brakes. I had it in my head that two inches of space between our cars was simply not enough to ensure that you would not fly into my car at the slightest deacceleration on my part. I have a tendency to think the worst of people, and am working on being more "go with the flow," so tomorrow I will try harder to not care as much about the impending doom caused by your refusal to back up a foot or two. Again, this is my issue, and I really appreciate your patience as I work through my obvious control issues.


Kristen "Scared Because Her Car Is The Size Of A Mario Kart And Would Be Easily Crushed" Eleveld

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