This post is a long time in coming. A long time. I am going to try to keep this as concise as possible, because 1. I could go on forever, and 2. my blood pressure will skyrocket.
That being said, Tallahassee drivers are the worst drivers on the face of the planet. And today I encountered every. single. fucking. way. these people annoy me.
-The guy stopped at the red light in front of me didn’t notice it turned green until I reminded him with my horn. (This happens daily.) (I have also had to do this to cops.)
-At a different red light, the guy in front of me neglected to notice traffic was moving until I reminded him with my horn.
-Making a protected left, the person at the head of the line was so slow to react (and the person behind him and the person behind him) that by the time I, three cars later, got to the light, it was red.
-Someone cut me off without signaling then immediately slammed on the brakes.
-Someone was too impatient to wait an extra three seconds for the clear road behind me and merged in front of me, forcing me to slam the brakes. Then he never got up to speed.
-A guy pulled out in front of me to make a left but sat in my lane until he had a window to complete the turn.
-Someone tailgated me up my street; I was doing 40 in a 35. I signaled and braked to turn into my complex, but by the time they realized I was braking, they were too close to stop and had to swerve into oncoming traffic to avoid rear-ending me.
-I don’t remember how many times this happened today, but I remember at least five instances of people apparently slowing down for no reason, then turning without signaling.
-The person in front of me doing less than 30 in a 55. On a two-lane road. Never turning, never speeding up.
-And the crowning jewel: In rush hour traffic, I am in the left lane, stopped at a light, about six cars back. The right lane is open as far as I can see. I signal right, check my mirrors, look over my shoulder, merge. As I pull up, the fucking assclown in front of me decides she wants the right lane too, and without looking or signaling pulls to the right, nearly sideswiping me. I have no time to lay on the horn, I slam the brakes so I don’t hit her and swerve into the turning lane. She doesn’t even wave as an “I’m sorry” gesture. I gave her the best double New York Greeting I could muster. Several times.
These people seriously drive like toddlers. “My space on the road. Mine. La la la I can’t see you. Ooh I want that space now. It’s mine too. *Swerve* Well you didn’t have your name on it so I don’t see why I should have to ask permission or tell you what I’m gonna do.” Honestly, they occupy their little spot, don’t feel the need to pay attention to their surroundings, and if they feel like cutting across three lanes, they will. Without looking or signaling. I could absolutely kill these people, but they’d probably do a better job of it themselves.
And the sad thing is, I’m not really asking a lot of them. I just want two things:
PAY ATTENTION. When you’re at a light, watch the light. When you want to turn or merge, judge the traffic window. If someone will have to slam the brakes, for God’s sake wait. If you want to change lanes, for the love of all that is good and holy look where you’re going. Make sure nobody is already in the lane. Check your mirrors. Look behind you. Make sure nobody is coming up fast enough that you’ll cause an accident.
USE YOUR SIGNALS, GODDAMMIT. This is a matter of safety. If I see you signaling to turn, I’m going to back off and give you more room to slow down. If I see you randomly slowing down, I won’t have idea what’s going on. If you’re stopped at an intersection, everyone in all directions will benefit from knowing where you’re going. It’s hard to determine right-of-way when we assume you’re going straight but you turn instead. And if you’re going to merge, signal. I will understand your intentions and back off to give you room to pull in. I’ll give you leeway to get up to speed. When we’re driving bumper-to-bumper, three lanes across, at 60mph, the last thing we need is some cretin swerving without warning.
It’s like that bike campaign: “Share the road.” Except these self-absorbed bastards need to realize they’re sharing the road with anyone. At all.