Tuesday, October 10, 2006

More Driving in St. Louis


My comments are in bold italics.

1. A right lane construction closure is just a game to see how many people can cut in line by passing you on the right as you sit in the left lane waiting for the same jerks to squeeze their way back in before hitting the orange construction barrels. Just know that I do this because I get sick of waiting for 15 minutes while everyone else gets in front of me since there's always some idiot that has no problem wasting several minutes of his time to let the cheating asstard in front of him - and that idiot is always, inevitably, in front of me. I appreciate the fact that you're not a Type A Personality and that you have all the time in the world, but seeing as how everyone is different - GET. THE. HELL. OUT. OF. MY. WAY. I choose to be the asstard, this way I might get to my location on time.

2. Turn signals are clues as to your next move. A real St. Louis driver never uses them. Has anyone checked to see if we have the largest population of Paranoid Schizophrenics?

3. Under no circumstances should you leave a safe distance between you and the car in front of you or the space will be filled in by somebody else putting you in an even more dangerous situation. This is very tough in traffic, but they will surely take any footage between you and the car in front of you - it could be 2 feet, they'll take it. And, don't honk or give them a dirty look - you're in the wrong.

4. Crossing two or more lanes in a single lane change is considered "going with the flow." I don't call it "going with the flow", I call it "getting around all the idiots".

5. The faster you drive through a red light, the smaller the chance you have of getting hit. According to J, you're supposed to honk your horn as you go through the light because that alerts the other drivers that you're going through it - I still don't get it, but he swears it's the truth.

6. Never get in the way of a older car that needs extensive body work. Missouri is a no-fault insurance state and the other guy doesn’t have anything to lose.

7. Braking is to be done as hard and late as possible to ensure that your ABS kicks in giving a nice relaxing foot massage as the brake pedal pulsates. For those of you without ABS, it’s a chance to stretch your legs.

8. Construction signs tell you about road closures immediately after you pass the last exit before the traffic begins to back up.

9. The new electronic traffic warning system signs are not there to provide useful information. They are only there to make St. Louis look high-tech and to distract you from seeing the St Louis County police car parked in the median. I've noticed them being used for S.A.R.A.A or Amber Alerts more often than for traffic alerts.

10. Never pass on the left when you can pass on the right. It’s a good way to scare people entering the highway. Oh no, you can't get on the highway in St. Louis, you're not allowed.

11. Speed limits are arbitrary figures, given only as suggestions and apparently not enforceable in the metro area during rush hour.

12. Just because you’re in the left lane and have no room to speed up or move over doesn’t mean that a St Louis driver flashing his high beams behind you doesn’t think he can go faster in your spot. It is possible that you're a good 3-5 car lengths behind the person in front of you and you keep slamming on your breaks every two seconds forcing the car behind you to test their brakes every time, despite the fact that you're 3-5 car lengths away! Maybe it was a clue that you shouldn't be in the passing (left) lane! If you're so scared of the driver that is 3-5 car lengths in front of you, you should probably be driving relatively slow - and in the far right (slow) lane. Besides, I thought the far left lane was called the "passing lane" and that it should be used primarily to pass slow drivers. Why is it that at rush hour, that is the only lane that is packed and every other lane is passing the folks in the "passing lane"? I don't get it. I just don't.

13. Please remember that there is no such thing as a shortcut during rush-hour traffic in St Louis. This is so true. You will end up getting caught in worse traffic if you try to take a shortcut.

14. Always slow down and be a lookee-loo when you see an accident or even someone changing a tire.

15. Throwing litter on the roads adds variety to the landscape, keeps the existing litter from getting lonely and gives Adopt-a-highway crews something to clean up.

16. Everybody thinks their vehicle is better than yours, (especially pickup truck drivers with stickers of Calvin peeing on a Ford, Dodge or Chevy logo.)

17. Learn to swerve abruptly. St Louis is the home of high-speed slalom driving thanks to MoDOT (Missouri Dept. of Transportation), which puts potholes in key locations to test drivers’ reflexes and keep them on their toes.

18. It is traditional in St Louis to honk your horn at cars that don’t move the instant the light changes. This is mainly because the lights are only green for a split second. If you don't take off the second the light changes, chances are that you'll miss it and be stuck again.

19. Seeking eye contact with another driver revokes your right of way. Matter of fact, you don't have a right of way in St. Louis.

20. Never take a green light at face value. Always look right and left before proceeding. Again, they do change very quickly.

21. Heavy snow, ice, fog, and rain are no reasons to change any of the previously listed rules. These weather conditions are God’s way of ensuring a natural selection process for body shops, junkyards, and new vehicle sales. After all, we do have our priorities.

22. Remember that the goal of every St Louis driver is to get there first, by whatever means necessary. Funny, J always asks me if where we're going is on wheels and my answer is always "yes".

23. Real St. Louis women drivers can put on pantyhose and apply eye makeup at 75 miles per hour in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Real St. Louis men drivers can remove pantyhose and a bra at 75 miles per hour in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Who wears pantyhose anymore?

No comments: