Road Rage, Invisible Groundhogs and Hypocrisy

I am a self-professed tailgater. And I’m not referring to the tailgating that occurs before football games around here. I am referring to the riding-other-drivers-asses variety of tailgater.

My dad and Lee both get after me about this A LOT. As well they should. Tailgating is rude and obnoxious, not to mention dangerous. But being the extremely impatient narcissist that I am… I just can’t seem to help myself. I can start out on a trip with the best of intentions and before I know it, I’ve memorized every scratch, dent and ding on the bumper in front of me… and I’ve probably fantasized about ramming into it too.

Yesterday on the way to work I got “brake-checked” by the guy in front of me (YES, an individual I happened to be tailgating at the time) and I had to slam on my brakes because he literally STOPPED in the middle of the road. He didn’t just tap his breaks to warn me that I was beginning to annoy him… He STOPPED… In the middle of a 55 MPH zone! Now, unless he was stopping for a squirrel, cat or groundhog—that I for one did not see—he was clearly sending me the “get-off-my-ass-NOW!” message.

I am well acquainted with this form of non-verbal, vehicular communication because I am not just your garden-variety tailgater. I am what you might call a “hypocritical tailgater.” I WILL tailgate you… but don’t you DARE tailgate me… or I WILL brake-check you until you get the message.

I feel it also worth mentioning that the guy who brake-checked me today was also a hypocritical tailgater because after he slammed on his brakes for me and resumed his speed… he practically crawled up the tailpipe of the guy in front of him. I must have been in a fairly decent mood because after re-securing all of my belongings back into the passenger seat from the floor to which they had fallen at the time of the aforementioned brake-check incident… I laughed. HARD.

I just laughed and laughed and backed the hell off. I got his message LOUD AND CLEAR. And maybe, just maybe, I secretly hoped that the driver whose tailpipe the break-checking-hypocritical-tailgater was currently sucking on would also stop suddenly in the middle of the road for an invisible squirrel, cat or groundhog… and well, you know the rest.

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5 thoughts on “Road Rage, Invisible Groundhogs and Hypocrisy

  1. Sorry, commenting on your side thingy today instead of the post above. I love eye tests, but I’m pretty sure you can’t cheat on them. I know, because I always find myself getting competitive and trying to cheat, but since I have no idea what the right answer is, no dice. When they’re flicking through a hundred pictures of the same line and you have to figure out which one is in focus, there is no right answer.

    Also, getting glasses doesn’t mean you’re old. I got mine when I was sixteen.

  2. I use to be an agressive driver and then took a defensive driving class. I am slowly progressing into more of a defensive driver now. However, there are just some things drivers due that just irate me. Illegal lane changes while cutting everyone off, not knowing how to merge on a freeway (pokey or drive on the freeway like Nascar), and the one I really hate is not maintaining a lane. Really – by not maintaining a lane, especially on a freeway can we say pileup!!! These seems to happen when there is at least one big rig hauling not one but three trailers. More times than not I back off, just shake my head and at times just chuckle. Great post.

  3. JT says:

    Ok so your up this guys bumper because your late getting to your eye exam and having delusions about imaginary animals….yep definitely time for a vacation 😀 I bet you are fun at an amusement park!

  4. Darrick says:

    Apparently on the way to church yesterday, I was tailgating someone. At least, he thought I was. (However, even my wife didn’t think so, which is kind of my measuring stick on such things, since she is usually the first one to let me know if she thinks I am following too closely).
    Anyway, the guy was in the left turn lane, but proceeded to swerve out of the turn lane and follow me when he saw I was going straight. He then followed me to church, all the way to my parking spot, before driving around me and telling me he can’t believe I did that with a kid in the car – while hollering profanities at me.
    Really, I am not sure what prompted this gentleman – in his old, rusty, beat up car with a big ol’ guard dog hanging out the passenger window – to get so upset. As I said, even my harshest driving critic didn’t think I was doing anything wrong. So, as he pulled back onto the street to drive away, looking back to yell some more profanities as I walked my family into church, I just smiled and waved.

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