April 7, 2008

Turning Left is a Privilege, not a Right

Filed under: Uncategorized — Brian @ 8:41 pm

Fellow drivers:

I know you’re just trying to be polite, but may I point out that, in certain cases, doing what’s expected and agreed-upon is a higher good than doing what might otherwise be more polite?

Case in point: you’re driving straight across an intersection, and someone coming the opposite direction wants to turn left across your lane.

You’re going straight. You’re going straight. GO!

The left-turning person will inch forward as you pass and then go behind you.

That’s the rule we all learned in driver’s ed in America. The car making the left turn never has the right-of-way. Apart from being a good rule, in that it allows for more cars to cross an intersection in a shorter period of time, it’s the rule everyone knows! is supposed to know!

It’s nice that you want to be nice, but making up your own rules at the four-way stop isn’t the place for it.

Thank your grocery clerk and mean it. Be patient when the waitress doesn’t refill your water glass immediately. On your girlfriend’s birthday, buy flowers for her mother. (seriously, try that one.) But please, do not stop in the middle of the road so you can have an extended gestural conversation with someone who just wants to get home after you get out of his way.

I want one of those semiautomatic suction cup dart guns, and I want a ticket issued to anyone with more than two darts stuck to their car at the end of the day. Not a fine: traffic school.

Here in Ohio, there are a few people who know the rules, and the rest seem to try to out-yield each other.


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