I’ve had my Jeep 7 months. We got it new and I’ve taken quite a liking to it. That baby now has 13,303 miles on it. I drive. A lot. My Jeep and I have been around southern California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas, Oklahoma, and (duh) Texas.
Y’all, I thought Houston was my motoring nightmare until I met southern California. Sure, there are good drivers somewhere – there have to be! I’ve been toying around with these letters in my head for months and every on ramp has only justified the snark that is about to be spewed.
Dear Suburban Driver of Southern California Roads:
Does it physically pain you to stop at a stop sign? No, really. Because no one seems to stop at them EVER, but if it’s your turn and someone doesn’t stop for you, whoa, Houston, we have a problem. Also, brake lights: are they optional? You have them. I can see them. So why don’t they work? Lastly, I am almost convinced that the blinker is the vehicular equivalent of an appendix in your mind, Suburban Driver of Southern California Roads. Much to your chagrin, I assure you that little stick on the left of your steering column does have a purpose, and a good one: it lets people around you know what the heck you’re about to do.
Not Miss Cleo
Dear Fast Driver of Southern California Roads:
I know, I know, you’re in a hurry. Guess what, sugar britches? No one cares. We all need to get somewhere, but you don’t see all of us raging around, in and out of lanes, no blinker, mere inches between bumpers. If it’s really that important, find yourself some lights and sirens. Might I suggest you put your middle finger back on the steering wheel? Please and thank you. You may do well with some smooth jazz or classical music to soothe your ragey nerves. 88.1FM or 105.1FM are good options, as are SiriusXM 66 and 76. Oh, and those pesky speed limit signs: I know you say to yourself, “Fast Driver of Southern California Roads, I know that sign reads 70 miles per hour, but they really meant 90.” WRONG. Literacy isn’t that hard, my friend.
Simmer Down Now, Here’s A Baby Animal
Dear Slow Driver of Southern California Roads:
The pedal on the right makes the car go. You should step on it. Everyone else is flying by at 80 miles an hour and here you are, putting along somewhere between molasses and grandma. ProTip: the fast drivers occupy the left side of the road and the slow drivers creep on the right. It makes sense: traffic needs to slow down to exit, ergo right lane is slower than other lanes. Don’t worry, you don’t have to exit – just stay there and cruise along at 47mph. No one will care. I promise. It’s just when you trudge along at the speed of a turtle when the rest of the road is going Ludicrous Speed, you’re a liability. Someone will hit you, or get unnecessarily aggressive and cause you to have a bad day. Just move to the right. Get out of the way. And, no, driving with your hazards on doesn’t make it any better if you’re not in the right lane – lookin’ at you, rusted blue 1989 Ford Ranger.