National Forget-how-to-drive Day

We have snow today for the first time. That makes it Forget How To Drive Day.

I submit the following from my drive to City M this morning for a prenatal appointment:

1) the first time my ABS system kicked in on a clear-looking road, I realized that yeah, this stuff was for real

2) the driver in front of me on the route to City M consistenly skidded and fishtailed EVERY time we got stopped for a light and started up again

3) cars stopped in the ditch on my side of the road, facing me

4) that same driver from #2 fishtailed EIGHT times on the entrance ramp to the highway; every time he straightened, he’d accelerate and fishtail again (he had a Toyota Tacoma, if that makes a difference)

5) and the driver from #2 and #4 who, on entering the highway, immediately got up to 60mph and disappeared

6) the SUV driver behind me on the exit ramp of the highway who, despite seeing me from about a half mile back with my brake lights on, proceeded to get right. up. behind. me.

Dear Sir:

I know you have antilock brakes, 4 wheel drive, and an SRS system that work together to keep your car safe. Despite that, guess what? You can’t drive through me. It takes the Blue Minivan Of Doom a while to stop, and I’m going to take that while because it means I live to stop again. If you hit me, I’ll cry about my 20-week-pregnant self to the insurance company and get a huge mental distress settlement; all I have to do is tell any judge that due to the baby, I can’t take painkillers for whiplash *and* that I worried for the next 20 weeks of the pregnancy that something would go wrong due to you wanting to exit the highway fifteen seconds sooner. Look at me and see seven figures of dollar signs. Is it worth it? I don’t think so. Keep a reasonable distance back from me. Jerk.


PS: I kept a huge space-cushion between me and Mr. Fishtail, and that’s why I didn’t hit him all those times he failed to move in a straight line. You witnessed this. Get a clue.

Snow is not an apocalyptic occurrence in this part of the world. After the first snowfall, people generally remember, oh, yeah! It’s slippery! Just not the first time.

Oh, yeah–the baby is fine.


  1. Ivy

    If the Toyota I drove in Florida is any indication, Mr. Fishtail might have been the single greatest driver in the universe. Those monsters handle like an irate panther on roller skates. The accelerator gets it to consider going, if it’s in the mood. The brake usually gets it to turn on the brake lights and every so often, to slow down. Turning the wheel causes it to “tend” right or left. I took a modestly tight exit off I-95 doing about 30. I’ve taken far tighter curves at greater speeds in my Saturn without a single problem many times. The exit I normally take coming off the Belt Parkway is tighter than that. The Toyota almost put us over the edge. I hit the ramp at the posted speed limit and the car decided to do its uber-wide spiral. I held the wheel as far right as it would go and stood on the brake. It didn’t bother to slow down and kept sliding left. I have never been so happy to hand over a set a car keys as I was when I returned that thing and I hold people who can actually get a car like that to respond in any reasonable fashion in high esteem.

  2. philangelus

    I’ve driven Toyotas in snow, though (when working for the car rental agency) and never had such a bad problem. My father has owned two Toyotas and never had difficulties to this degree on snow. When I asked, it was his opinion that the driver was the lemon, not the car. 🙂

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