Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Bad drivers (Ohio division)

My father's family, who I will call the Eastern and California division, are communists. My mother's family, however,all live in Ohio and are renowned as really rotten drivers. So bad that if they have spouses, the spouses are delegated to drive.

Mother never liked to drive, and while she was married to my father, she never did. When they divorced, she purchased a car and took driving lessons. Amazingly, she passed the test, parallel parking for the only time in her life; and became a menace on the road. She tried her hand at multitasking, but was an absolute failure at it. Mother had a habit of turning her head to look at her passenger if said passenger was foolhardy enough to try to keep up a conversation in the car. Of course, this meant she lost sight of the road, but only momentarily. She was also so short that the car looked like it was being driven by a little munchkin. All you could see of her was a couple of small hands clutching the wheel and a pair of brown eyes peering over it. Even using a pillow didn't seem to help much. Mother just wasn't physically designed to drive a car.

As for parking: mother looked at the curb, and took careful aim at it. When she got anywhere remotely close to the curb, she turned off the motor and abandoned the car, sometimes not too far from the middle of the street. She used to be in the habit of leaving the keys in the car (so she wouldn't lose them). Young people would steal the car from time to time. She finally started to take the keys with her, at the request of the Bexley police.

The last time I drove with my brother the genius he spent the entire time yelling at the kids on the rare occasions he took his eyes off the map; that was ten years ago. Brother also wore a crash helmet when he drove--perhaps not the worst idea, given his level of driving skill. He was even a lousy passenger, given to outbursts of "Watch out!" and loud dramatic gasps. I once threatened to let him out of the car on the New Jersey Turnpike if he didn't shut up.

Uncle Moe was a pioneer: he was the first person ever observed driving 20 miles per hour in the left hand lane with his blinkers on. He drove ever so s-l-o-w-l-y, too slowly to injure of kill anyone. However, he did inspire thoughts of murder in other drivers.

Uncle Doc was the absolute worst. His mind was on his destination, and he became angry with other drivers who he felt were holding him back. Uncle Doc's MO for switching lanes: 1)signal briefly; 2) go into other lane, hoping that one of the unfortunates who shared the road got out of the way in time. Sometimes they did, other times, they didn't, the silly asses.

5 comments:

airforcewife said...

I'm still waiting for the Miriam's Family book.

But, until then, you never did mention how your own driving is.

miriam said...

I'm a terrific driver.

Tatyana said...

So, you're a black sheep in your family! By Ohio-side standards, of course.

OBloodyHell said...

Hmmm. Makes me appreciate Boston drivers, who have heretofore qualified as the worst possible.

I was visiting Boston, and managed to note how, despite the fact that the road was literally five lanes wide (with, oddly enough, no lanes painted), two cars were still managing to drift back and forth across the highway adequately to prevent any car from passing them.

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