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Posted: December 4, 2011 12:30 a.m.

I’m the wrong guy for the right lane

I wish I had a cup of coffee for every time someone has advised me to drive in the right-hand lane on the interstate. Actually, that would be too many coffee cups to wash, so I'll settle for a few pounds of coffee beans, and I'll brew it myself. The fact is, I've heard this comment over and over: "Stay right! It's safer!" I'm sure there are safety advantages to consider, and - as my wife reminded me - traffic laws often require you to drive in the right-hand lane. So, I'm not about to offer driving advice here, but I do want to call your attention to life in the right lane.

The right-hand lane is where you'll find the newest drivers. New drivers are too scared to be anywhere else, so they stay to the right where they can scare us, too. The right lane is also the lane for the slow pokes. I wish I had some coffee creamer for every time I've been trapped behind someone doing 40 mph in the right-hand lane. I like that hazelnut creamer they have down at Ingles.

You'll find two other types of nightmare drivers in the right lane. There's the steam roller who never looked up the word "merge." To him, the entrance ramp is a ski slope. He starts at the top, builds up speed, and lets it rip. You'd better not be in his way when the entrance ramp ends, and he forces his way over. The other kind of driver is the timid mouse who gets to the very end of the entrance ramp and then slams on the brakes, even if she has a clear path to enter. I wish I had a chocolate doughnut for each time I saw this happen. Doughnuts are great with coffee and hazelnut creamer!

Let me remind you: I'm not giving driving advice here. If the law, your sainted mother or your parole officer says stay in the right lane, you stay there. But, if you do drive on the right, you'll need to watch out for entrance ramp demons who can't merge, drivers who think anything above 40 mph is a sin, new drivers with white knuckles, and the timid drivers with squealing brakes. And watch out for people who eat doughnuts and drink coffee while they drive. They're the worst!

David McCoy, a self-proclaimed Southern-Gentleman and Raconteur-in-Training lives in Covington with his family.

 

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