Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Some Navel-Gazing

Am I a Masshole? I thought I was, and I was prepared to write a whole post on my foray to the Dark Side, but then I did some research and I’m starting to wonder. I do have some Masshole tendencies, but some of what I’ve found is not yet applicable and I hope it won’t be. Some of it, I have to say, I’ve seen plenty of in other states. Some of it is truly Massachusettsian, or at least in its severity.

Take the left turners, for example. In this state the lengths that people will go to, to make a left turn, is really quite interesting. The Masshole could be technically past the stoplight, 3 lanes over and still cut in front you to make the turn. They could be 3 lanes over, in the intersection and decide they missed a left turn 2 blocks back and they’ll U-turn into oncoming traffic. Where there is a ‘no u-turn’ sign. Where small schoolchildren and puppies are trying to cross the road. Where your car is conveniently in the way, how dare you!

Or take the lane straddlers, who cannot seem to make decisions when at crucial intersections, with lanes of cars behind them. Even better is when they are traveling at high speeds on the roads and can’t decide whether or not to cut you off.

I will admit to using my signal less and less, to driving faster since I’ve moved here, and to sometimes making ill-advised driving decisions such as the u-turn where there is supposed to be no u-turn (though not across the 3 lanes of traffic and puppies and children and rainbows).

I will admit that when I visit MD I have to be very conscious of speeding more than everyone else and of the fact that people are not expecting me to jump in front of them. Honestly, in Massachusetts, that 2 inches of space that person is leaving you when merging in from the exit ramp is them waiting for you to go and they will be annoyed when you don’t take it. I know I am.

I'll admit that from time to time, especially when I have somewhere to be, I've followed a little too closely to someone who is definately driving too slow. Not when we are on the highway or in major traffic; but when I'm just trying to get out of Somerville and you are taking in the sites along 16 or what have you, you really need to move along. There are no sites, just drive already. Pretend you know where you are going like the rest of us, and don't bother looking for signs because there aren't any. I do feel somewhat guilty for this mindset, though. It's not thier fault Boston roads are, shall we say, 'challenging'. I especially feel bad if it ends up being a old person.

I will admit to telling other drivers just how stupid they are by getting in front of me and going to slow, or by not merging properly when I’m clearly giving them room, or by their inability to pick a lane. My most famous quote to date is me yelling at a driver with an out of state tag, “In Massachusetts, we DRIVE”.

I don’t think I’ve completely turned into a Masshole, which is more due to my desire to live to see another day than anything else.


g said...

This is an excellent post. Nice links. Very funny. And DC drivers are like that too, although maybe not quite as bad. Or maybe equally as bad just in a different way. One of my biggest peeves is when people try to make lefts where there's a sign saying no left turns. Or when people who CLEARLY were not in the interesection before the light changed but go ahead and make a left turn anyways (like when the light changes, and 7 cars still turn left...dude, car 7 was halfway up the block when the light changed). Or when people violate my pedestrian right of way. Oh...that one gets me really mad. Especially b/c I try to be good and cross in cross walks with the signal. And then I am forced to yell at people and use foul language.

Grace said...

Which is entertaining to me. The best was when some lady tried to hit G, Tammy, J-Dog and me and then yelled at us for taking undue risk with a child. Tammy and G really got fired up at the lady.

cat said...

i heard about that! stupid people. i also hate the people who very well know where thier exit is, but won't wait in the line like everyone else and try to butt in at the last second. why do they think they are so special?

g said...

I hate them too. They make the back-up even worse by trying to butt in line past where they're supposed to merge. I try not to let them in if I can help it.

Mary said...

Cat! I always knew how funny you were, but now I'm even more glad that your brain is blogged in public, where it belongs! Thanks for sharing your hilarious insights!