[OT] Hit and Run

Joseph Hall joseph at thatworks.com
Wed Aug 22 11:54:17 MDT 2007


"This year, nine states have considered legislation specifically
banning driving while texting. Washington is the first state to pass a
law, making DWT, a crime with a $100 fine."

On 8/22/07, Jeremy Hansen <atticusser at gmail.com> wrote:
> >  Of course,
> > driving and texting (DWT) at the same time, that would be dangerous
> I don't know if you were joking about this or not, but I have witnessed this
> exact transgression 3 times in the last 2 months. The first time I saw it I
> couldn't believe it was actually happening. The worst case was a
> teen-to-early-20s girl turning left onto the NB I-15 on-ramp at the 106th
> South intersection at about 4:30 PM. Not exactly an area of light traffic.
> Thankfully, for me anyway, I was headed south. But I just kept imagining her
> on the freeway, constantly glancing down at her phone which she held with
> both hands on the center of the steering wheel (apparently turning that with
> her elbows), and typing away furiously with her thumbs. It was like playing
> peek-a-boo with oncoming traffic. In fact, I was so mesmerized by her
> stupidity that I'm sure I was almost as distracted as she was.
> On another note, I have a bit of an axe to grind with the "Utah drivers"
> stigma that has already been mentioned. To be blunt, I think it's total
> bull.
> I have driven in many different parts of the country, as doubtless many of
> you have and, in my experience, there is no shortage of seemingly
> incompetent drivers anywhere. I say seemingly because I believe it's really
> just my (read our) overinflated perspective of a negative situational
> experience that labels other drivers in this way. Driving here is no worse,
> from a statistical standpoint, than anywhere else. Utah ranks close to the
> middle in most driving related statistics, and lowest by almost half of most
> states in % of alcohol related deaths in auto accidents. The bottom line is,
> we all have driving idiosyncrasies. Ask anyone from Florida where the worst
> drivers are and guess what they'll say? What about Washington or Rhode
> Island?
> I propose that the reason most people complain about Utah drivers (or the
> drivers from whatever state they happen to be in at the time) is that they
> encounter other drivers who don't drive the way they do. They have different
> tendencies. This is only magnified in an environment with drivers in
> unfamiliar or crowded conditions, both of which are increasing in Utah
> almost daily. Think about Washington D.C. where abrupt lane changes are seen
> as simply a necessity, as evidenced by the numerous times I was almost
> forced from the roadway by taxis. I hadn't realized that was part of the
> local custom. Silly me.
> How often have you heard about a driver who was too slow, or wouldn't get
> out of the fast lane, or wouldn't let them into the other lane, or in some
> other way impeded the first driver's progress and therefore forever damaged
> them by way of inconvenience? Of course these people are frustrating, but I
> guarantee you have had the same effect on some other person at some time in
> your driving life. I am as guilty as anyone else who has spent an angry hour
> in the car because someone 50 miles back had cut me off. I am also sure that
> I have made a mistake of my own while driving from time to time.
> Driving is a cooperative effort by everyone to make it to their destination
> without running into each other. Unfortunately, aggressiveness, impatience,
> and self-centered intentions are clogging up the gears. Whether it's you
> driving too fast, or the other guy driving too slow, it doesn't really
> matter. We all just need to chill out a bit. At least that's what my wife
> tells me when that vein starts bulging out of my forehead every time I get
> on the freeway.
> I'm sure many of you disagree with me, and that's fine. I expect it. I'm not
> defending bad driving. My point is that there are bad drivers everywhere,
> and you know what? The lights aren't always greener on the other side of the
> state line. I'm not trying to rip on all other drivers but myself either.
> Quite the opposite. I'm trying to bring to light a reality that might
> prevent you from giving someone the finger on the freeway only to find out
> as you pass that it was your neighbor. Besides, did you ever check the
> license plate of that idiot? He's probably from California. They can't drive
> their way out of a paper bag.
> Kenneth - I hope your situation is resolved to your satisfaction. There
> certainly is no excuse for that kind of irresponsibility.
> Jeremy
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