The Cure For The Common Road Rage

 

I consider myself a peaceful and easy going individual most of the time, I’ve meditated and practiced yoga for almost twenty years. There are few things anymore that rile me up but one of them left is the annoyance of bad drivers. When I’m driving something transformative happens that reduces the level of my patience nearly to zero. It seems that drivers, more than ever, have their minds on anything and everything but driving. Rules of the road to them are mere, “suggestions” and this would include lane markers, signs and traffic lights.

Yes, I admit was one of those horn-beeping, finger-flipping barbarians who would not hesitate to call you out for cutting me off, running a red light or drifting into my lane while simultaneously steering with your knees, sipping your latte, and checking your Facebook news feed.

My cure came in a most unassuming way. Just recently I bought a used 2010 Honda Fit. This car is perfect for me in every way and inadvertently has ended my decade long, love/hate relationship with driving. I believe what this car has taught me could possibly cure road rage on a global scale.

I’ll never forget the first day I discovered it. It was just a regular day and I was on the way to work. From the other direction someone turned left in front of me, nearly shearing off the first few inches of the front of my, “new” car. I was furious and instinctively slammed my palm into the center of the steering wheel and that is when it happened… “meeeeeeeeep”. Just as a succession of blistering expletives were about to be launched from my lips I laughed instead.

This was no normal horn, in fact it reminded me of the horn on my old 1983 Tomos moped…if the battery were almost dead. The sound was embarrassingly dreadful and actually the antithesis of what a horn should be. I felt shame, I felt embarrassment, it humbled me.

As my father so graciously taught me through his example, the offensive gestures and fiery expletives can come in any order but the horn beeping must always proceed them both. That’s the way it is, there’s no other way.

Instantly, I became a change man, years of anger were wiped clean. All it took was a wimpy horn.

~Eric Vance Walton~

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