People need to learn how to drive.
I was in a traffic jam this morning in the right lane of the highway. Dead stop. I was not happy.
Meanwhile, in the left lane, people were moving at about 20-30mph. This confused me. After a few minutes I found a break in the left lane traffic and I managed to move over and get going. Then I finally reached a sign that described the problem: “Left Lane Closed 2 miles.”
Now I finally understood the stupidity of your average driver. These people in the right lane were sitting in a 3.5 mile one lane parking lot because they didn’t understand the simple rule “Use both lanes to merge point.” As I travelled down the left lane, from time to time someone would stop to try to merge into the right laneâ€”still over a mile from the merge point. Whatever… that’s just one less person driving slow in front of me.
Eventually, I approached the merge point, alone in the left lane. I matched the speed of the right lane traffic (moving finally, albeit slowly), put on my turn signal, and tried to find a spot to merge. The car I was going to merge in front of decided he wanted to be first and sped up to get in front of me. That’s fine, I figured, I’d just get behind him. But then he slowed down right next to me, intentionally blocking me out. So I kept slowing down further, and he slowed as well, blocking me until I was almost on top of the cones. Apparently satisfied with himself, he continued, and I still got in behind him. After we got through the 20 feet of construction area, I pulled back into the left lane and passed him, and received a rather rude gesture from the driver (hidden from the kids in his back seat).
While I understand that he was most likely not in a great mood from sitting there in that traffic for so long, there are a few things that bother me about this.
- There was a backup over 3 miles long for a 20 foot stretch of single lane restriction.
- People voluntarily sat in that line when there was an alternative.
- I get flipped off because I was too smart to wait 15-20 minutes to move 3 miles.
Some people (including the guy in that car, probably) are going to say that I was rude for driving past all those people and “cutting in line.” After all, we’re all taught in school not to cut in line, right? To those people I say, nice sentiment, really wrong application.
I have no problem waiting my turn*. But I see no reason to sit there when there is an alternative. And if other people had done the same, there probably wouldn’t have been a 20 minute wait for the people in the right lane. Instead of me getting through almost immediately, there would have been maybe a 1/2 mile backup in both lanes and everyone would have gotten through with a minimal wait.
Actually, if people would truly be civil to each other and take turns, there would barely be a backup at all. Traffic would keep moving, slowly, because one lane wouldn’t have to stop to account for three people trying to get through in the other lane without a break.
So what conclusions can we draw from this?
a. People are rude.
b. People are stupid.
c. Stupid people don’t like to be proven stupid.
* okay, that’s not really true. It does bother me. But I am willing to endure it.