Do you consider yourself to be a courteous driver? According to a survey NRMA recently conducted 56% of people think they are most of the time, but what does it mean to be courteous? The Oxford dictionary definition is polite, respectful or considerate in manner. Some ways of being more considerate or friendly behind the wheel could just mean giving a friendly wave to someone who lets you in or not blocking intersections.
Let me put you in my shoes for a minute…
7am Monday morning and I have managed to coax my 16 month old son into his car seat with a muesli bar. I put my seat belt on, turn the volume up so I can hear the $1000 pop quiz and off I go into the peak hour traffic heading north bound along the Princes Highway. “Which artist sung these two songs – ‘I’m Bad’ & ‘Man in the Mirror’. MICHAEL JACKSON. The traffic comes to a halt so I courteously don’t block the intersection and let another driver in front of me. No thank you wave.
Now that really beeps me off!
Having a 16month old in the car stopped me from using a number of vulgarities on that occasion but boy did it put me in an bad mood for the rest of the day. This got me thinking, on what occasion have I done the wrong thing by a fellow driver? Have I ruined someone’s day because I didn’t give them a friendly wave or because I was too lazy to put my blinker on or because I blasted the driver in front of me just because they simply merged into my lane on a day that I am running late for coffee with my girlfriends? I’m sure most of you can relate to this.
The survey of over 1,500 motorists in NSW and the ACT found tailgating (42%), not letting drivers merge into lanes (39%) and slow drivers hogging the right hand lane (36%) are the top three discourteous behaviours that get us hot under our bonnet. Over the last few weeks I have been more aware of some of these behaviours on the road and amazingly I have learnt (deep breaths help) to not get so hot-headed when someone merges in front of me without giving me a friendly wave and I am starting to wonder if my horn still works?
Now put me in your shoes. What beeps you off about other drivers? Do you have any warm and fuzzy stories about someone being nice behind the wheel? Shopping centre car park stories are always great…