I was working on a completely unrelated story when I got side tracked talking about how my family drives and I decided to turn it into it’s own post.
My family are all the worst drivers I have ever met.
My mother has never learned to smoothly operate a vehicle. Her foot is either on the gas or on the brake at all times. I can’t ride more than 100 feet as a passenger in her car without getting sick.
And I get carsick a lot. As long as I am in the front, I am generally okay. Except with her. This leads to me doing most of the driving now that I am an adult, but I am okay with that.
My mother also has a very low tolerance for things like stress, traffic, and getting lost. Every time she gets lost, she calls me up frantic and pissed. Sometimes she even cries. And then she doesn’t even know where she is so I can help her find her way. No road names. Nothing. Sometimes she will say something helpful like, “I’m passing a Burger King.” Like that narrows it down.
My sister, J, is a VERY careless driver. (I love you J, but it’s true). I remember once when we lived together she was driving us somewhere and changed lanes without even checking the other lane. At all. She was just like, “Oh, I need to be over there.” And swerved into that lane like a fucking maniac.
One of my other sisters did not learn to drive until she was over 30. And a third sister taught me many creative uses of the word “fuck” when driving with her. She was also one of the most angry, aggressive drivers I have ever met, even to this day.
My brother T is probably the best of the bunch. But as he is usually on some kind of drug or alcohol or both. It tends to make me not trust him with my life.
But the truly bad driver is my father. He speeds. To excessive, insane speeds. I recall many times when he was in no particular rush and was still going 100+ miles per hour on the highway. Just because. And he tailgates like crazy, blaming it on the fact that he used to drive in Los Angeles.
He doesn’t pay attention to the road. He will slam on his brakes and pull over at almost anything. Yard sales, construction sites, empty lots, trash piles. My father loves them all.
He also rolls the windows down and blares rock music. Which he then shouts over to talk to you. And if he is talking to you, he is looking at you. He cannot have a conversation with you without making eye contact with you.
He writes himself notes while driving. Ideas for necklaces, poetry, reminders of errands or groceries. And if he wants to look at something on the side of the road, say, a pretty girl or a new billboard; he will twist completely around in his seat to make sure he does not miss one second of it as it passes. And he is interested in looking at every one and every thing. He has some kind of driving ADD and everything catches his eye.
He also has zero regard for other drivers or little things like courtesy, medians, traffic lights and sidewalks.
One time (recently) we were trying to make a U-turn on a very busy road in Orlando. U-turns were illegal at the next two median breaks. So my father, ever the problem solver, cut across the concrete median. And when his wheel turning base on his truck was too wide to make the U-turn into a proper lane, he drove up over the curb and down about 300 feet of the sidewalk of a newly built restaurant to get to the cross street he was heading for. On the wrong side of a busy road. Against traffic. On the fucking sidewalk.
And then he seemed confused and hurt when I wanted to drive after that.
I’m not going to lie and say I am some patron saint of driving. But part of my job involves driving a company vehicle. And though I have been in many accidents, none of them have been determined to be my fault thus far.