Welcome to part three of my series on driving. At this point you have hopefully learned what set of rules city drivers are operating under, and why so many of them are idiots . You are now ready to study the penultimate level of driving prowess: the Dick. To drive like a dick is to be a dick, and contrary to what some women might think, you needn’t have one to be one.
Drivers are a community, and driving is a community event. There is sharing of resources: roads and lanes. There is kindness and selflessness in leaving driveways and intersections clear so other drivers can move. There are hardships like when we must merge or when we must wait because of an accident or construction. The dick does not particpate in this community. He exists outside it and sees it as nothing more than a roadblock on his racetrack.
Because of this, the dick hates driving. He is alone against everyone else on the road. He fumes when the other drivers do not move, when they are waiting for something he cannot see. He begins to see them as nothing more than obstructions, and finally as the cause of his misery.
Eventually, out of spite, the dick begins to lash out at the now amorphous object of his hatred called traffic. He derives a sick satisfaction from beating traffic, from getting back at traffic, and finally from attacking and hurting traffic. These attacks temporarily replace the emptiness he feels for not being able to participate in the community of other drivers. But outside the dick’s tiny mind, in the world of other drivers, these acts of aggression cause anger and frustration, and sometimes the creation of more dicks.
Because the dick sees other drivers as obstructions, the most obvious revenge tactic is to be an obstruction. It’s the “Ha ha, how do you like it?” syndrome – the cry of an idiot who thinks his life is unique. In the examples below you can see how as an obstruction, you would control the situation. You would have power, and you could flaunt it. You would be a dick.
- Block the left turn lane. If there is no curb around the left turn lane, this is impossible. What I typically see is a Lexus SUV whose driver is pissed at me for being on her racetrack, so she’ll either hang back at the light so there is no room for me to get into the left turn lane, or she’ll actually move left just enough to obstruct the left lane.
- Block intersections. This is a simple move in heavy traffic. Take every opportunity possible to be that last person in line, stopped in the middle of the intersection. Traffic will probably start moving soon. When it doesn’t and the lights change, you have succeeded in being an obstruction. This can be tricky when you want to make a left turn. What I see some people do is not get into the left turn lane until the light has almost changed. Then they quickly switch lanes and make the turn. If traffic is heavy enough they might block cars in one or two lanes.
- block driveways. This is a great way to be a dick. You not only obstruct the driveway, but you make the people who left gaps in their lanes angry too. Soak up that glare. If you want, you can point and laugh.
- Block lanes. When it is your turn to exit a driveway, choose to turn left. It’s always more dick-like to turn left. Pull out enough to obstruct a lane (the left lane gives you more control, but the right lane can give you more obstructive power). Remember, as the obstruction, you are a powerful force that other drivers must acknowledge. Eventually they will have to bow to your will and give you the right of way.
- Block merging. This is very simple, which makes it all the more satisfying (for dicks), and is often used as a revenge tactic for people who have recently encountered a dick. Whenever there is a lane ending, the educated driver will stay in it until the last possible moment. To be a dick all you have to do is hug the bumper of the car in front of you. If the merging lane is on the right, move a little to the right of the car in front of you so nobody can sneak a corner in on you.
This second group is not as easy to describe. It could still be considered a form of obstruction, but not a stationary obstruction. These involve using your vehicle to control the other vehicles while you are moving, or to facilitate your own continued motion. I like to think of these as acts of revenge against traffic.
- Cut people off. Like me, you may daily entertain thoughts of ramming your car into another car because the driver is not playing nice on the road. Sadly, such thoughts, as sweet as they may be, can never be acted upon; they must always remain pure fantasy. This is why cutting people off works; nobody is crazy enough to simply ram into the car that is cutting everybody off. Today, while I was waiting in the right turn lane because cross traffic had stopped, a car went right by me (obviously not in the turn lane) and turned right, effectively cutting off about 15 cars. So now we all had to wait for him too. I continuted to watch him as we drove, passing on the left, swerving over the double yellow lines to pass another bunch of cars. He was a classic example of a dick.
- Stick ’em with the red light. When you know a light is about to change to yellow, adjust your speed up or down so that you can make it through just a split second after it turns red, leaving the car behind you stuck at the light. Recently I had to move out of the way of a woman who ran a stop sign to avoid having to wait for me. I don’t mean a rolling stop; she sped through at 25mph in an attempt to get in front of me. At that point the speed limit on my street changed from 35 to 45, so I was going much faster that she was. I was in the right lane, I moved over to the left lane, and then as I passed her I got back into the right lane. Well I had apparently pissed her off because she pulled up next to me and began cussing at me. I waved and then ignored her. She continued to match speed with me even after she was done yelling, and I soon discovered why. You see there was a longer line of cars in the right lane, so it was the less desirable lane. I began to slow down to get behind her, and she slowed down too. Then she drove through the stoplight just as it turned red waving to me stuck behind two cars.
- Don’t let them get the green arrow. At most large intersections the green arrow will only appear if cars are there before the cross traffic signal turns yellow, so watch this carefully. If the car behind you looks like he may want to turn left, slow down just enough so he won’t make it there in time. Then you can laugh at him for having to wait at the light. People do this to me almost every day. Maybe I’m just paranoid, but probably not.
- Thwart left turns. This is a perfect example of the how evil these people are. The light ahead is red, so the guy ahead of me slows down with the hope that the light will turn green soon and he will not have to move his foot. I of course am turning left, and my green arrow is fading fast, but I cannot get around him. As he drives on through the intersection, he looks back at me waiting at the red arrow with a little smirk of satisfaction.
- Hesitate. This is a little thing, but it gets people angry. When you are turning, and there is a gap, hesitate just enough so that nobody can turn immediately after you.
- Conceal your Intentions. This is great fun at intersections without turn lanes. Wait until some cars have accumulated behind you, and then, as if you are changing your mind, engage your turn signal. The cars behind you will visibly sag with a disappointed sigh, but I know you are just being a dick.