Monday, January 18, 2010

8 Things NOT to do While Driving

If you have found your way here via 51 Articles of Things Not to Do When Driving at, let me extend to you a warm welcome. Feel free to look around and see what interests you. Contact me if you have any questions!

  1. Using your cell phone/Texting—Okay, so I do talk on the phone while driving. I never text. I never talk in inclement weather, heavy traffic, or adverse driving conditions, including traffic jams. I do not do it while driving among people that I seriously need to pay attention to (those swerving about and such) unless I am calling to report them to the state patrol. I probably shouldn’t do it at all.
  2. Eating—This is an old habit of many of us, but we really handicap ourselves when we try to eat in the car. Some things are not easy to eat with one hand. Some things put grease on our hands. Some things are hard to unwrap. Just not a good idea altogether.
  3. Applying Make Up—If you are looking at your face well enough to correctly apply make-up (or attempt to), you are not looking at the road. It is not your personal salon. Don’t do it. I bet your car will stop moving when you arrive at your destination and then you will have a few precious seconds to apply your lip gloss.
  4. Reading—You might get bored. Turn on the radio. Listen to a book on tape. Talk to yourself. I don’t care. Don’t read though. I’ve found that you get the most out of a book when you actually look thoroughly at the words to comprehend them and place them together in concise sentences. You cannot do this while you are looking at the road. Don’t make your book more important that my your life.
  5. Doing Puzzles—Seems like a no-brainer, but I have been PASSED on I-95 by a woman working on a Sudoku puzzle. I knew it was that type of puzzle because her beautiful Mercedes careened close enough to my Camry for me to tell that she was trying to decide between a 7 and a 9 in the first block. Seriously…I didn’t stare at the puzzle that well, as I was trying to find my escape route for when her car eventually took over my lane, but I did see it was Sudoku.
  6. Disciplining Kids—You know that “don’t make me come back there.” Well, leave it at a threat. Don’t actually try to take something from your child, spank them, or snatch the hair out of their head while you are sitting in the driver’s seat of a moving vehicle. Pull over and take care of your family business. Or use that "When we get home..." threat and mean it (or they'll never take you seriously and you'll just be a stressed driver, which is also not good!).
  7. Restrain Pets—Pets can be dangerous when riding unrestrained in a car. Not only is it like not buckling in your child for their own safety, but pets can be spastic and suddenly put themselves in dangerous situations (like trying to jump out of the window or onto your head). Prevent them getting injured by their bright ideas or by you trying to save them by restraining them either in a pet seat or in a carrier.
  8. Change Clothes—I have seen people change almost entire outfits while DRIVING (not riding) down the road. Not only do you need to wiggle around while you do this and use the hands that should be on your steering wheel, but you must unbuckle to do this as well, making it not safe. I have even fussed at Chip for taking off his shoes while driving because the prolonged removal of his foot from the accelerator can cause the people behind us to run upon us and he has yet to learn to retie them with one hand and while sitting upright. NOT SAFE. DO NOT DO IT.
BONUS--Not for anyone’s safety, but for goodness sake, do not pick your nose while driving. We can still see you.

Photo credit: chucklyn

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