A few days ago, I almost plowed my car into a shiny new BMW because the dumbass in the Beemer failed to check for oncoming traffic (that is, me) before making a turn.
Unmentionable profanities spewed from my mouth as I was forced to swerve around him at 50 mph. But then, I looked over as I blew past him (intending to flash him my most intimidating glare, of course), and I saw him hold up his hand and nod sheepishly at me. It was pretty clear from his body language that he was saying, “Sorry, my bad.”
Interestingly, my desire to continue spewing profanities immediately vanished, and I felt totally vindicated. I still thought he was a dumbass, but at least now he was just a dumbass, and not an asshole to go along with it (let’s call that being a dumbasshole). Even more interestingly, his apologetic gesture immediately quenched my seething road rage.
And that got me to pondering….
I’m sure we all agree that driving brings out the vilest monsters lurking in our psyche. Maybe it’s the stress of trying to get somewhere on time. Maybe it’s the frustration of having to deal with traffic. Maybe it really is all the assholes surrounding us, because certainly the asshole can’t be us, right?
Then again… maybe it’s the inherent design of our automobiles that turns us all into assholes. Let’s take a look at the equipment we have available to communicate to other drivers on the road:
1) Turn signals
2) A horn