What’s the Hurry?

And now for something a little different. A small rant I need to get off my chest.

Psst. You. Yeah, you. The one tailgating me and getting mad that I won’t speed up.

Slow down.

Seriously. Slow. Down.

Let me tell you why.

I don’t know if you’re aware of it, but school is back in session. Really. Around here, it’s been that way for a few weeks. Here’s how I know. I’m going to share this information with you so you don’t keep making the same mistake day after day after day for the next nine months. All those kids on the sidewalks. See them? Yeah. Put the phone down for a second (since it’s illegal for you to hold that up to your face while you’re driving) and look on the side of the road. All those kids. The ones with the backpacks? See them? They’re walking to that building over there that says “Elementary School.” That’s my first big clue. The second? The signs on the side of the road that say “Entering School Zone.”

Short of that, I don’t know how else to get it across to you that we’re driving in a school zone. And that you need to slow down. Way down.

I get that it’s a pain in the ass to drive through this school zone. Because it’s not really one school zone. It’s two school zones sort of squished together. Three if you count the high school, but that’s not marked as a school zone. It’s confusing and the speed limits change every 30 feet. It’s 35 MPH until the first zone, then 20 MPH then back up to 35 then back down again. And the high school isn’t a school zone but they have crosswalks in odd places and it’s not well marked. Plus, let’s face it, the street we’re driving on is kind of big and kind of major and it’s screaming for at least a 40 MPH limit. Maybe even 45. It’s wide, there’s nothing there – except those darn schools – and you’re in a hurry.

I don’t know why you’re in a hurry. And, truthfully, I don’t care. Because that’s not really the problem here. That speed limit sign applies to you, just like it applies to me. That’s why I only go 20 MPH when we’re in that zone.

See, I’m not in a hurry when I’m in those school zones. Even on the days that I am, I’m not. Know why? I don’t want to get a ticket. Because if I did get pulled over, I would be late and pissed off and I don’t like having those kinds of days. Especially when it’s avoidable. If you want to get a ticket, be my guest. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you. The cops love hanging out on that street. Love. It. There’s a couple of great places for them to hide so you can’t see them until it’s too late and they nail you.

When you’re driving up my tail pipe (I take my foot off the accelerator when you do that.), get mad because you can’t intimidate me into going your speed, give me a dirty look as you pass me, then blast through the school zone, I’m just guessing here, you think the rules don’t apply to you. Or you’re late. Or whatever. Doesn’t matter.

Getting a ticket, well, that’s your choice. But, when you’re speeding through a school zone faster than the speed of light while yapping and/or texting on your phone, weaving around all us slow pokes, you’re not just making a choice for you. You’re making a choice for the rest of us. One that you may not be able to undo. In my car, I have air bags and crumple zones and whole bunch of other shit to keep me safe. If something goes wrong, I stand a chance. Plus, I’m driving defensively, keeping an eye on you and avoiding you. But, a kid on the street? No air bags, no crumple zones. No nothing. Just a backpack, which I’m guessing doesn’t function quite like my airbags do.

Listen, I know a whole bunch of other people are doing it, too. But, like Mom said, if they jumped off a bridge, would you? She also said, two wrongs don’t make a right, so, by my calculations, your two wrongs of speeding through the school zone like a maniac and using your phone while doing it don’t add up to right.

So, for the rest of the year, could you maybe, just maybe, slow down? Plan ahead and leave earlier for where ever you need to go so when you do slow down, you aren’t late? Or, take a different route? I’m sure there’s more than one way to get to where you’re going. At the very least, stop tailgating me. It’s not going to get me to drive any faster.

Thanks. I totally appreciate it. And so does everyone else.

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