One of my top pet peeves was all around me today — inattentive drivers. Running stop signs, driving outside their lane markers, driving too slow on the high-speed highways, driving too fast on city streets, changing lanes without signaling, pulling out of driveways without checking for other traffic. They were everywhere.
Maybe it’s because it’s a weird day in Oklahoma. Almost all the schools are out today and tomorrow, for “parent-teacher conferences,” and so all the state’s football games are being played tonight, instead of tomorrow. Or maybe I was just more aware of them.
People this IS NOT just a whiny, bitchy complaint. BAD DRIVING KILLS PEOPLE. You would think the bloody pictures I slap on the front page every so often would make people think twice about hurtling along in their 2,000-pound vehicles amongst everyone else who’s hurtling along.
If a bullet leaves my gun’s muzzle at 900 feet per second, and strikes you in the leg, chances are, you’ll lose some muscle tissue. But a car going at 55 miles per hour (80.6 feet per second) that hits you in the leg will snap your body into several different pieces, and probably toss you into another vehicle’s path. I’m just saying that people are always so all-fired scared of guns, even unloaded guns, that they’ll freak out — some people — just from seeing one. But no one freaks out when a car barrels down the road. And it’s just — if not more — dangerous.
But I felt a little better when I saw one of Seminole’s police officers (who has asked to only be identified here as “Officer Leroy”) pulling over car after car today. “Officer Leroy” was everywhere I turned, writing tickets, pulling people over, issuing warnings, etc. In fact, as I write this, he’s parked in front of my building, issuing yet another ticket to a vehicle that was speeding past my house (and then I saw the car run a stop sign as he pulled over for the officer!) I’m not one to complain about an aggressive police force issuing tickets over traffic regulations.
Of course, I’ll complain about police who have “traps” set up, or who can’t seem to read their own speed limit signs (like in Cromwell, Oklahoma, for instance, where I once received a ticket for going 38 in a 40 — think about it!), or who break the laws themselves. But I’m talking here about drivers flagrantly flaunting the law, seemingly unaware of the possible consequences.
In 2003, I saw 19 deaths on the roads in Seminole County, and last year there were 17. That’s one of the highest per-capita death rates in the nation. NONE of those wrecks were caused by vehicle failure, mechanical malfunction, or a lack of posted traffic signs. ALL of them were caused by mistakes on the part of the driver(s).
Okay, that’s off my chest. I feel better now. But wake up people. If you get behind the wheel, pay attention. Thanks.
Another complaint for today: People who say to me: “Man! I wish I had your metabolism!”
Get real. Most of the people who say this to me are people who don’t exercise enough and who eat too much. There’s a very simple, two-step solution to weight loss, that works for most people: eat better and exercise more. I eat right most of the time, and I exercise all the time.
Of course, I know that metabolism has something to do with it, as does a person’s genetic makeup. I also realize that a very small number of people have other medical conditions that lead to dramatic weight gain. If that’s you, rest easy; I’m not complaining about you. Some people might have to curtail their eating more than others, and some folks might have to do even more exercise to make up for their slower metabolisms, but IT STILL WORKS.
On the other hand, with my metabolism, GAINING weight is not easy. More than once, I tried various methods. I’ve even tried the “pure fast food diet,” the “eating six large meals a day diet,” and other ideas. I’ve had a hundred people make suggestions about how to gain weight. It’s all crap.
A related pet peeve is women who look PERFECT who say, “Oh, I’ve gained so much weight!” Or, “I’m way too fat.” Can I explain something? I know this has been said before, but apparently it’s not getting through: Those women in the magazines are FREAKS. Why would anyone want to look like that? The six-feet tall women who weigh 120 pounds. That IS NOT healthy.
Good gracious! Has common sense gone out the window?
Ugh. I’m all complained out. But I feel better.
Now, I’m off to eat some fast food and watch a football game.