“Me First” Traffic Syndrome

The first step to any recovery program is admitting you have a problem. So, I’ll go first:

I don’t like to follow anyone on the road. If the opportunity is there, I will pass you. It’s not because you’re a bad driver (unless you’re a beige Corolla), or because I don’t like the look of your back end (unless you’re a dinosaur), or even because I’m in a rush (generally, I’m pretty laid back); it’s simply because I can’t stand being behind anyone on the road.

And I know I’m not the only one.

I see it every day in every traffic situation. It doesn’t matter how fast or how slow the general flow of traffic is moving, there are always cars making moves to get ahead — and I’m one of them.

Sometimes I have to stop myself and actually think to stay in my lane. Why? Because in the end if usually doesn’t matter one bit whether I’ve zig-zagged around everyone else. Nine times out of 10, I end up beside or behind the same car I was trying to avoid in the beginning — at least in heavy traffic.

On the open road, it’s more of a “me first” mentality that pushes me around cars. It’s not that I can’t be a follower; the question is, do I really want to be? And the answer, generally, is no. I’d rather see nothing but the open road ahead of me. Why would I want to stare at your rear the entire way?

And I don’t know about other motorists, but I feel such a sting of embarrassment if I’ve passed someone on the road, only to meet up with them again at a traffic light or the same destination (shopping centre, restaurant, etc.) moments after I’ve arrived. It’s as if they’ve glimpsed my major flaw and I wish they hadn’t — they know my dark truth now.

Is it our must-win attitudes that drive us to pass constantly on the road, or are we really in that much of a rush all the time?

Drive on,
– M.

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~ by drivingmsmiranda on January 4, 2011.

One Response to ““Me First” Traffic Syndrome”

  1. I think I drive pretty darn fast, but it seems there is always someone behind me wanting to go faster. On curvy mountain roads I sometimes don’t even know how they do it. They must be pulling some serious G’s on those curves.

    I tend to drive “strategically.” By that I mean I try to plan ahead and drive with logic. If I’m on city streets and far from any turns, I’ll drive in the center lane to avoid people slowing to turn left or right. If I’m getting close to my turn, however, I try to pick a spot and change to that lane with plenty of time to spare.

    One of the things that really bothers me is people who don’t plan ahead and/or have to get ahead of every car they possibly can. These are the people who pass up opportunities to get behind you, make a radical cut off move to get in front, then suddenly slam on the brakes because they have to make the very next turn. Psychotic!

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