Despite the fact that I am currently in the midst of a four year no-ticket streak and am accident free for over ten years, I must confess that I have become a terrible driver.
I recently drove to Princeton, New Jersey and back. It was not pretty. Granted, that trip is about as horrible a drive as exists in America, and the traffic was off the charts, but in all candor, I drove like a maniac.
Here’s the thing…the older I have gotten, the more maniacal I have become behind the wheel. When traffic becomes worse and worse, I become more and more aggressive. Part of the problem is I’m used to driving a Cadillac CTS with a huge and powerful engine, so when I get in the old family Pacifica I try to drive it like a sports car. It’s kind of like running a sprint in army boots.
Pam and Kaitlin were unanimous in their negative opinions about my too aggressive style, not to mention my smart-mouthed sister in the car behind us trying to keep up. Thanks to walkie-talkies, I was plagued with two cars full of back seat drivers!
I’m not sure why, but whenever I’m on a long trip in the car, I become a crazy person. I start weaving in and out of traffic, changing lanes for the pure hell of it and driving much too fast. It’s like I become obsessed with conquering the trip at all costs and woe be unto the poor slob who makes the mistake of putting his Prius in the passing lane doing the speed limit!
I have a feeling it has to do with stress. Maybe my aggressive driving is a release of some sort, or maybe I’m turning into my Grandfather, John Dixon, who was once pulled over at age 80 going 95 mph the wrong way down route 29 near Amherst, Virginia. So, maybe it’s in my DNA.
“You don’t understand Officer, it’s not my fault. It’s genetics!!”