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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Dear Fellow Virginia Driver


Dear Fellow Virginia Driver:


I would like to take a moment to discuss with you a few issues which come to light as a result of our sharing the roads in northern Virginia during the last two years. Please accept my feedback in the spirit in which it is intended. It is my hope that this communication, and any communication that follows, reinforces our already firm relationship characterized by trust, respect, and amity, and that we can find even better ways to share the highways and byways of the region in which we find ourselves to be neighbors.

The Left Lane

Get out of the left lane! Right now! You're going too slow! Where did you get your driver's license, anyway? The left lane is for passing and faster driving. If I have to pass you on the right, you owe me! Okay, let's make a deal: you stay out of the left lane for the rest of your life. Deal?

Tailgating

Get off my tail! Are you trying to read the label on the inside of my rectum? I wish I could shoot flames out my tailpipe! I'm trying to be open-minded here, so please educate me - is that how they drive in Mexico or El Salvador? For our mutual benefit, would you consider conducting the remainder of your future driving in your country of origin?

Radar Lock

Exactly why must you drive right next to me? If you do that in Detroit, you're likely to get shot. I wish that were legal here! Seriously, why do you feel the need to lock in on my car, drive right next to me, speed up when I speed up, and slow down when I slow down? Personal inadequacy issues? Like my sideburns? Stop it!

Turn Signals

The turn signal control is the little stalk that sticks out of the left side of your steering column. You move it up to indicate your intention of making a right turn or lane change, and down for a left turn or lane change. It would be nice of you to use this device to give me some small clue as to what you're up to - otherwise I have no earthly idea.

Green Light / Arrow

Red light stop, green light go. Most 3-year-olds know this. It's one of the first things kids learn. So what is it about getting a VA driver's license that makes this so difficult to remember? Go! The light's green! Go! Finish putting on your makeup later! Hang up the cell phone! Go!

Overall Competence

The talented Mrs. Bruck and I have been teaching young David, son of Bruck, to drive, and he's doing quite well, thank you. But in addition to the usual development and reinforcement of normal driving skills, we have to add a considerable dose of defensive driving, and continually explain your lack of said skills:

"Don't assume he's going to stay in that lane just because he's in it now."

"I don't know why he's stopping in front of you. Maybe there's an invisible elk crossing the road, that only he can see."

"Look, just assume the worst from the drivers around you and maybe sometimes you won't be disappointed."

"I have no idea what he's doing up there, just give him plenty of room."

"This is good practice for you in case you ever have to drive in a third-world country."

I just thought of something that might make the roads a little safer, but I'll need your cooperation. Go home, park your car in the garage, flush the keys down the toilet, and look up the local bus lines and taxi services.

Again I would like to emphasize my hope that we can share the roads as neighbors and friends, and that as a result of this little discussion we can enjoy a safer and more cooperative relationship on the roads we share in northern Virginia.

Sincerely,
Bruck

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