Road Rage

As a frequent driver, there are a lot of things that other drivers do that tick me off, but I usually handle it. Then there are some times that that what the other driver does causes me to totally flip out and lose control of myself. Completely. I do not want to hear from victims of road rage. I want to hear from those on the other side like me.

Yeah… I have a temper… I try to rein it in, but, damn… Sometimes I get so mad, I get stupid, and that just makes the freeway more dangerous for everyone.

I hate being tailgated. It makes me stupid. I flash my brake-lights. I slow down. Once, I got so damn mad, I slammed on my brakes and damn near caused an accident. (Thank God, it didn’t.)

All I have is the paltry justification, “It was in response to something someone else did wrong.” Yeah, right. Their sins do not justify my sins.

And you can’t “count quietly to ten” in traffic!

Over in this Country (South Africa) we have a road phenomena called “Taxis”. These are 10 seat Toyotas, modified to take 18 passengers and they believe that they are not subject to the rules of the road. Each week we read about a taxi accident where the driver failed to stop at an intersection and all 18 on board were killed.

If you leave a gap between you and the car in front whilst driving along, a taxi will overtake you and squeeze in the gap. Should they see a fare at the side of the road, they will slam on their brakes and stop in the middle of the road to pick them up. If you get out of your car to reprimand the driver, you are more than likely to be shot.

I do not suffer with road rage but often fume in my car at these idiots on our roads.

If this is true, why aren’t you dead? Why haven’t you hit a bride abutment or had some other equally catastrophic accident?

In what way do you flip out?

Wouldn’t most people that completely lost control of themselves behind the wheel and flipped out be dead? Or in prison?

I used to be an angry man. Things would often replay in my head and I’d stay angry about them all day, which made it even more likely that the *next *small thing would piss me off.

Here is how I learned to deal with these situations. First, I ask myself: Did it *really *change the quality of your life? I can usually honestly say no, my life will still be pretty good today, even though that guy in the car was an asshole.

If I’m still annoyed, I try to frame it in a ridiculous situation that wouldn’t make me angry, but might make me smile. The guy who zoomed in so he could steal the parking spot I had been waiting patiently for becomes a cow who ambled in to the parking lot and is blocking my way. If a cow had wandered up and waltzed in while I was waiting for that guy to back out , I’d be all like: WTF? but I’d laugh about it. Of course, I know it wasn’t a cow, but taking the time to imagine it gives me time to shrug it off and move on.