Rules of the Road
I have driven all over
the world, and have noticed the driving peculiarities of the native
populations. Below are some of the main driving rules, and the
main automotive accessories people use to cope with their particular
driving environment. I am almost certain that these rules are
in no driver’s manual anywhere, so these are the unwritten rules
of the road.
New York City
Signal intentions with elaborate hand gestures.
Horn-o-matic™, a computer operated horn that activates upon
the detection of a Green Light. Unfortunately, in New York City,
the speed of green light obeys special laws of relativity causing
it to arrive at the vehicle behind you before it gets to you.
Drive your cah so that if the other driver does not take evasive
action, he will hit you.
Do not discharge a .45 weapon in a .22 zone.
If it’s raining (and when isn’t it), slow down to 15 mph, and
crash into the nearest vehicle.
Pontoon bridging equipment. You never know when the bridge you
are planning to take will fall down or sink.
Japan does not have driving rules; they have parking rules since
traffic doesn’t move. The quickest way out of a Tokyo traffic
jam is to sell your car to the person behind you and buy the
one in front of you.
Cell phone, fax machine, and laptop so you can get some work
done by the time you get into the office late in the afternoon.
Same driver’s manual as California, except translated into Turkish
and interpreted with Islamic fatalism. If Allah wills you to
have an accident, you will have an accident no matter how safely
you drive. If Allah wills to protect you, no amount of daring
will harm you. The conclusion is inescapable, put the pedal
to the metal, and leave the driving to Allah.
A copy of the Koran.
Of course, I can’t
get away with just a few lines when talking about driving in the
- North Carolina
is NASCAR country. The overriding rule of the road is pole position.
Position your car so as to be in front of the car in front of
you. It doesn't matter if you have to drive 5 miles past your
exit to complete the pass. Do not lift your right foot off the
floorboard until you see the checkered flag drop.
- If you are bringing
in a car from out of state, you will have to have the turn signal
de-installed so it can pass inspection.
- If the car in an
adjoining line front of you is signaling a turn into your lane,
(out of stater obviously) accelerate to close the gap before
it can pull in.
- A yellow light means,
“speed up.” (See next rule).
- You can proceed
through a red light if the car in front of you goes through.
- When approaching
a red light, accelerate at maximum speed to the point where
only maximum breaking will stop you before the intersection.
You might just luck out and have the light turn green at the
last moment and you won't have to slow down at all.
- Creeping forward
into the intersection will cause the light to turn green. If
you get your entire vehicle into the intersection before the
light turns, you may proceed.
- Highway speeds are
posted in mach, not miles per hour.
- Do not follow a
pick up truck with a gun rack too closely, especially if it
is driven by a man wearing a baseball cap that says "John
Deere" or "Caterpillar." You don't want to get
hit with a piece of spit out "chaw." Use extra caution
if the driver is wearing the cap backwards. (Turning a baseball
cap around backwards lowers the wearer's IQ by at least 20 points).
- All turns are made
from the far lane into the far lane. In other words, to make
a left turn, get into the right lane, then turn into the right
lane of the cross road. (If you don't cross six lanes of traffic
in the process, you’ve done it wrong!)
- Do not blow your
horn as soon as the light turns green (You Yankees might want
to de-install your Horn-o-matic™ ) if you are behind a vehicle
that has a bumper sticker that reads, "If you can read
this, you are within small arms range."
- It is illegal to
pick up hitchhikers, but it is legal to pick up road kill. So,
if you see someone on the side of the road, you have to run
him over before you can pick him up.
- Watch out for children;
they have a difficult time seeing over the dashboard of the
heavy farm machinery they are operating.
- All vehicles must
come to a complete stop before making a right turn except at
a red light.
- If you are making
a left hand turn across a lane of traffic, and the cars in front
of you are doing the same, you can continue with your turn regardless
of oncoming traffic. This concept is known as “left of way.”
- When in doubt, bear
right. (This is Jesse Helms country).
Pavement Markings and
Hand Passing Lane.
Hand Passing Lane
sign is obviously not an official NCDOT sign. It is missing
the bullet holes.
Ahead for Next 10 Years
end collision area. Beware of the car in front of you. It
may stop if there are people standing by the side of the
to see the following filling the entirety of your rear view