Winter Drivers / Driving Pet Peeves

#1: Brake lights: Ok, so I’m out today trying to get to Middleton from the east side of Madison this morning. It’s snowing a little, people are driving slow and that’s fine. This SUV pulls in front of me… great. Their back window is blacked out and I’m in a small sportscar, so now I can’t see too much in front of me anymore – just her brake lights. Then she’s hitting her brakes for every little bump in the road because she’s riding the tail of the car in front of her. BAD! Eventually I passed her and she looked clueless.

If you’re driving in winter weather, put more distance between you and the car in front of you. Duh!

And do NOT keep jumping on your brakes. You do that and wonder why the traffic is so slow… because of people like you slowing everyone down, causing more stress by tapping those brakes for every little stinking thing. It is possible to just ease off your gas pedal. You don’t need to always have your foot on a pedal. Maybe that wasn’t covered in driver’s ed, I don’t know. I’ve figured that much out though.

#2: Cruise control: I’m heading up to Cascade Mountain the other morning and I start to pass a car. No wait, they’re speeding up. They were not with me the whole time, but when I come up to them and they increase their speed. No wait… now they’re slowing down. Ugh, now the most annoying thing… they’re matching my speed and I’m stuck in their blind spot.

Why does the speed I’m driving affect your speed? If I wasn’t there would you arrive at your destination later? Why?

This has happened more than once in the last few weeks and I’m starting to understand why people do this. Since we had Presidential elections recently, some people still have their election stickers on their cars (here in Madison, the Kerry-Edwards stickers stayed on people’s cars for years and were just covered up with Obama ’08 stickers) and this tells you a little about their beliefs. Most of the cars that do not use cruise control and are affected by what speed other people are driving are Democrats. And that totally fits their M.O.: see which way the wind is blowing and adjust according to that rather than stand on something firm and consistent.

So my conclusion so far is that people’s values/beliefs affect both their driving and their voting. It of course affects other things but it’s interesting how these two are related. Do your own research and let me know if I’m right.

-Tony