Archive for January, 2008

Where do bad drivers come from?

In Cambridge (MA, not UK) where I’m currently staying, I meet great people every day – from cashiers at Trader Joe’s, to joggers, to friendly restaurant customers from neighbouring tables who come over to make cute noises at my baby boy, to my colleagues and friends at MIT, to the cheerful staff at local libraries, to.. etc. You get the general idea – I really like the people here!

So something that’s been kicking me is, why are drivers here so impatient and rude? On numerous occasions, I’ve been honked at while starting up at traffic lights (even though I’ve barely had enough time to disengage the parking brake), or if I slow down to look for landmarks or road signs, and on some occasions given really nasty looks if I unintentionally stray into the wrong lane. This has left me wondering.. if the people I meet everyday are so nice, where do all these bad drivers come from? Does getting behind the wheel bring out the worse in people? Or are there two distinct populations in Cambridge – drivers and non-drivers, and for some reason do my daily interactions bring me into contact with only the latter group?

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, I’m really not that bad a driver, honest!


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