I'm an excellent driver, and you are an idiot.
That pretty much sums up the attitude of most people on our roads today.
We all think we're the only ones who obey the rules, pay attention and use common sense when behind the wheel. Everybody else is clueless, obnoxious and careless when it comes to traffic.
Like the guy who sped past me on the way to work yesterday. He was flying. In a hurry to go nowhere.
Or the five people who thought they could make it through the intersection after the left-turn arrow turned yellow.
How about the old man in the hat doing 12 mph? Or the teenager texting and driving at the same time? Or the guy with the little dog in his lap? Or the lady with the big hair who doesn't know how to use her blinker?
Then there are those people who never learned to merge. And the ones who think they have a right to cross three lanes of traffic to take an exit.
Our highways are full of offenders.
It's a jungle
I see these people every day. They follow me wherever I go.
Like the guy who tailgates on the interstate. The girl who never uses a mirror for anything but applying makeup. Or the big-rig driver who gets into the left lane and takes six miles to pass another truck.
How about the nerd in the sub-compact with the air scoop on the hood? He passes you and then slows down to avoid the cops.
And don't ever get in front of a soccer mom and her land yacht. She'll run you down more quickly than you can say carpool crazy woman.
If she doesn't get you, there's always the contractor in a pickup truck crammed with wheelbarrows, paint cans and stepladders trying to fall out the back on a Friday afternoon after payday.
The only things worse are the guy who runs red lights, the salesman who drank lunch or the logging truck you never saw coming.
I swear, it's a jungle out there.
Videos and GPS
That's why I drive defensively.
I'm always on the lookout for people who might change lanes without warning, don't dim their lights for oncoming traffic or pump their brakes if they go into a spin.
I anticipate problems on the road ahead. You never know when someone will roll through a stop sign, fail to yield, or suffer a mechanical mishap.
I evaluate the weather conditions and adjust accordingly. I set my speed to the flow of traffic. I use my turn signals properly.
But it's a losing battle.
More and more often, just when I think people are finally starting to grow a brain, they get into their cars and trucks and prove me wrong.
They back up in a parking lot without looking, or drive in reverse on an access ramp, or try to make a left-hand turn from the right-hand lane.
They will run 20 mph over the speed limit just to sit at the next traffic light for an extra 20 seconds.
They talk on the phone, listen to music, watch videos, read the paper and fiddle with the GPS system while trying to parallel park, which they can't do.
Like I said, I'm an excellent driver.
It's you I'm worried about.