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Gear Head

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

So, I am a bit of an old fashioned gear head.  I love muscle cars, super cars, fast cars, motorcycles, rumbly motors and ones that purr like kittens.  Give me a fast car with a stick shift, the open road and some great tunes and I am a happy chick.  I can be a defensive driver but in truth I am much more an acolyte of the offensive driving school.  I don’t wait around for people to come into my sphere and then I have to react to what they do.  I am a very active driver in that I am constantly watching around me and gauging traffic and other drivers.  To watch me drive though, you wouldn’t really know it.

I love night driving the most though.  There is something great about the sun being down, the moon being up and just rolling along.  Before the cost of gas got prohibitive I used to just hop in the car, roll down the windows, put in some good tunes and drive around town.  I would intentionally get lost and just see where I wound up.  I love doing that!  You find some of the best places that way!  Even in a town I have lived in my whole life I never know what I am gonna find on an adventure drive.  Some day I want to do this across the States and back again!

I am under no illusions that all drivers are created equal.  Amazingly enough my dad’s Pavlovian driving school didn’t manage to kill my love of driving as that manner of training did kill other things for me.  If anything it deepened my love of it.  I began to understand the physics of handling the vehicle, how to make it do what I wanted it to do and then push the limits of that even more.  I think understanding the physics of driving is something that is sorely missing for most drivers.  People really don’t understand that they are driving a several ton weapon.  Yes, it is transportation but it also has the potential to do great harm when not handled properly.

I have a theory about driving.  If you can not operate the vehicle you own with a certain degree of competency past the fact that you can turn the key and get it to stay mostly in a lane…you shouldn’t own it and you sure as heck shouldn’t be on the road amongst other drivers!  I also think that everyone should have to retest, and I mean the WHOLE test, every two years.  Can you imagine how many people would not be on the road tomorrow if people had to re-test more than just when they turn 16?  And how many of the drivers that are left would actually be competent.  That’s a dream of mine, more regular testing for driving licenses.  It’s a lovely fantasy that I dream every time I have to get out into traffic around Atlanta…anywhere in Atlanta.

Do I think that this would solve all driving issues, wrecks and so forth? Um no, because I am not an idiot.  There is always going to be human error, unavoidable incidents, mechanical failure and so forth.  There is no blanket way to protect us all every day…no matter what current law makers like to believe as they make more and more rules that govern things that should be common sense.  Like wearing your seatbelt.  Really? That needed to be a law that you can be ticketed for? Really?  (If you could only see me shaking my head here and sighing.)  I think a better idea would be that if you, as an adult, choose to not wear your seatbelt and then you get into a wreck where the damage could have been minimalized then you don’t get to sue anyone for it.  Why?  Because people need to start taking fricking personal responsibility for their own actions!  That is a whole other rant that I won’t get onto this late in the evening.

I was driving home tonight and had a clear path most of the way and thoroughly enjoyed myself.  I would have enjoyed myself even more if I could have had the road all to myself.  I am such a dreamer…

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