Not long ago you may remember a post of mine entitled Driver Decorum, where I let loose on all my driver pet peeves. All of those are still in effect, only I’ve realized I seem to have left out a few things. So, for your reading pleasure, I give you Automobile Annoyances: the sequel to Driver Decorum.

The Rear-View Mirror Narcissist
I know whenever a mirror is involved it’s hard to resist the temptation of admiring yourself, but I seem to always be driving behind rear-view narcissists. I can understand some simple preening: running a hand through your hair, inspecting your nose, or checking to make sure your mascara didn’t smudge. Unfortunately, there are some people that become wannabe supermodels in their car. I see women cranking up the A/C to create a wind effect and making kissy faces at themselves. There are men daintily using two fingers to sculpt their hair and eyebrows. This kind of bizarre behavior is perfect for your home bathroom, but not so much sitting in your car in traffic.

The Side Mirror Lurker
Have you ever been innocently stopped at a light when you look up and realize the driver in front of you is leering at you from their side mirror? Don’t think I don’t see you because you opted for the side mirror and not the rear-view. Whenever they realize you caught them they do that thing where they pivot their head 360° to make it seem like they’re surveying their surroundings, only it doesn’t fool anyone. Objects in mirror may be larger than they appear, but you’re still creepy.

Baby on Board, Idiot Driving
There is absolutely no reason anyone should have this sign plastered on their vehicle. Shouldn’t we all be driving safely enough that a baby could be present in any car without anyone needing to announce it to the world? Does anyone really see that obnoxious sticker and think, “Oh, well there’s a baby in there…I guess I can’t drive on the wrong side of the road doing 90 miles an hour like I normally would.” We’re all happy you’ve had a baby and that it’s strapped in like a little melon in the backseat, but don’t expect us all to drive any more carefully than we normally would.

Your Child is an Honors Student
…too bad no one cares. I can’t imagine the pressure moms must feel when their child carries home that heinous bumper sticker indicating this worthless achievement, but this is one moment where you just have to say,

This will be my car someday.

“No Timmy, I’m not putting that on the car because 5 years from now you’ll be in college, and I’ll still have this car, and I’ll look like a fool.” The moms that want to put this pseudo-accolade on their bumper are even worse. What happened to giving your child positive reinforcement at home? Don’t display your kid’s achievements on your vehicle.

The Domestic Disturbance Couple
I’ll be stopped in traffic blasting some Train and in my peripheral vision I notice angry faces, shrugging shoulders, and gesturing arms: just one lane over I see the domestic disturbance couple arguing for all us other drivers to see. These couples are never just having a disagreement in their car… they’re yelling, they’re doing all these exasperated arm movements, and most of all, they’re making all the cars around them pretty damn nervous. No matter how heated things may get with your significant other, you really shouldn’t be arguing in the middle of traffic. It’s very distracting and unsettling to other drivers, because we obviously don’t have access to popcorn in our cars. …I don’t like to watch a show like that without some snacks nearby.

I think that just about ties up all the loose ends… until the next time I’m on the road.

14 thoughts on “Automobile Annoyances

  1. Why do people feel the need to place a “Family” sticker on the back of their SUV’s and mini vans? You know you have seen these damn things; they have usually depict a man, woman, kids, dogs, cats, birds etc. I for one am sick of these things, what makes you think the whole world needs to see what you’re packing into a Tahoe? Nobody cares if little Billy was the “best colorer” in is class or if he made the Honor Roll, except you. Family stickers and school stickers–no excuse. They are usually the domain of self-satisfied Gen X women who drive 4 wheel drives, can’t park and want us all to know their kids are in private schools. Here’s a business idea for you entrepreneurs out there, make some stickers for the non family man. Your sticker line on the back of your SUV could have images of like say beer bottles, porn collections, dollar bill signs, illegitimate kids, ex-wives, mistresses, and handguns.

    1. Hahahaha! I hear ya! For the longest time I thought that sticker was from some dealership or something, kind of like the Carmax sticker. I did see one once that was pretty cool, though. It depicted the “Ass Family,” and there was Jack Ass, Dumb Ass, Smart Ass, etc. I think there’s a real market for the porn collection one and the illegitimate kids.

  2. I was suppressing the urge to laugh out loud while reading this at work. I have the worst road rage when it comes to stupid drivers. My favorites are the irrational honkers…especially when they honk at you when THEY do something wrong!

    1. I hate them, too! People are always honking at ME when they almost massacre my car coming out of some parking lot on the right side of the street. Like HONK, the road’s not clear, but I’m pulling out anyway! …That’s helpful.

  3. May I add picking the nose? When you’re in your car it’s easy to feel like you;re entombed and sheltered from the rest of the world. But we’re not! So when you’re one step away from using a spoon to dig into your nose, remember that people can see into your windows.

    1. Yes! I try to keep in mind I’m practically on public display… but sometimes when a song I love comes on I can’t help but treat other drivers to my rendition. But the nose pick is seriously disgusting. I especially hate when people try to shield their nose with their other hand while they’re elbow-deep in their nostril. We all know what you’re up to in there. Gross.

  4. Another thing I have to say, this is the only stuff I miss about not having a car these days. Shortly after moving to NYC I sold my car because I just didn’t need it, but I do miss my wheels. Just not the goofballs.

    1. When I used to tell my mom I wanted to move to New York (it just seems more exciting and that’s where most publishing houses are, anyway) she’d always be like, “You like driving too much, and you wouldn’t need a car there.”

  5. Hilarious! I would like to add a bumper sticker to the list: “Out of a job yet? Keep buying foreign.” It’s a big one in Detroit — something all the Union guys like to mouth off about. The irony is that every Union guy that drives an American Ford, GM, or Chrysler, also owns 6 Kawasaki snowmobiles, 4 Kawasaki waverunners, 3 Hitachi televisions, 3 Toshiba Blue Ray players, 2 Samsung computers, and a Honda Gold Wing in the garage. Dumb-asses!

    1. Haha! Well, shit, in Detroit I’m surprised there isn’t one that says, “Buy a foreign car, I’ll kill you.” It sometimes amazes me that people think “buying foreign” only applies to cars. In addition to all the things you listed, what about clothes too, or food? It’s pretty hard to find American-made things.

      1. Pretty sad, I know. Actually, the bumper sticker should say: “I’m out of a job so please buy and American Car so that I can continue to make more money than I’m worth.”

  6. Baby on Board, Idiot Driving made me laugh … and I totally judge people who have one adult and then 4 or 5 animal stickers on the back of their car. Are they just admitting that they have an obsession or do they actually think that is a good idea.

  7. You know…I always wonder if parents consider that those “My child is an honor student at xx school” considers that they’ve just potentially made this announcement to a pedophile that now knows where to find their child…Just sayin’.

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