Let me take you back to the moments leading to one of the most bizarre driving experiences of my life.
Upon hearing about Ben and Jerry’s Free Cone Day, I instantaneously started the car and eagerly set off. As I pondered which flavor of frozen delight I would choose, I drifted into the left lane, safely implementing my turn signal.
Without warning, a red crew cab truck bolted from my right and swerved in front of me, stopping in front of me at a green light. An old geezer, top four buttons on his shirt undone, flung open his door and stepped down from his truck using his old man step. Scowling and muttering curses under his breath, he ambled back to my halted car and started his tirade.
“I’m 80 years old, been driving in this state for 50 years and never gotten a ticket or been in an accident. It’s people like you that make me want to stay off the roads! You’re speeding 70 miles per hour through a school zone and you cut me off! I’ll report you to the authorities!”
Amazed at the ludicrous situation, I couldn’t help but smile. “Get that grin off your face. I’m serious!” he admonished. I managed to get out a “sorry, sir” and watched in amusement as he feebly attempted to get back in his truck.
I was neither speeding nor did I cut anyone off– I consider myself to be a relatively safe driver. In my two years of driving in this state, I have been ticket and accident free, and I wasn’t driving particularly dangerously en route to Ben and Jerry’s. This got me thinking;what did the old man have up his you-know-what?
According to smartmotorist.com, the geezer (over 65) and I (a teenager) have the same rate of accidents in miles driven. As an old man, his disdain for youngin’s coupled with possible dementia made for a nasty combination. I respect the elderly and certainly do not wish to be guilty of ageism, but driving is a skill that can be lost with age. No offense to the crotchety old man: the roads are not the same as they were 50 years ago. I shouldn’t be subject to discrimination because of my age. If I am respectful of old drivers, I expect respect in return.