Category Archives: commandments

Summer driving season is here, so be careful out there!

Here are a few things to watch out for:

FROGS! But only in Greece, which leaves most of us in the clear, thank goodness. As if the poor Greeks haven’t had enough to worry about lately, millions of frogs forced closure of a road there the other day, due to cars skidding off the road while trying to avoid smooshing the poor little critters. Would you like to see? It’s rather creepy, but not actually as bad as I expected.

Here in the US the trouble this week is cancer from your car window. Yikes! According to my favorite magazine, The Week, as reported on LIveScience.com, researchers at St. Louis University have discovered that skin cancer is more common on the left side of our faces. Yup, the one that’s getting all the rays from the driver’s side window. And you know what that means, don’t you? Right. Drivers, apply your sun screen!

But that’s not all. Thanks to a bunch of traffic cameras and the kindness of Romans909 who compiled the video and my friend Tom who sent it along, we have a vivid demonstration set to music of how much trouble can be waiting for us if we’re not careful around those busy intersections:

Double yikes! You know, I’d have thought that being pretty well known as the law, red lights ought to be obeyed on their own, without the extra help of a commandment, but I can see now that I may have been wildly overoptimistic there. So here you go:

Stop for the *$#%! red lights!

Of course, first you need to see the lights, which brings us back to Mother’s most recent obsession (and she’s in very good company, I might add), which is PAY ATTENTION! Don’t text or chat or read or shave or any of the other bizarre and inappropriate activities that we’ve been hearing about lately. Just DRIVE! And do it nicely, please. Thank you.

OK, just one more commandment before we go:
Have a Happy and Salubrious Memorial Day Weekend!

And last but absolutely not least, let’s all remember them always…

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

Distracted driving: STILL texting & chatting on the road?

I know, I know, I’ve been harping on this for quite some time now. Does mother need to tell you how to make me stop? That’s right! I will stop nagging you as soon as you do what I say, and I say that you must STOP texting or chatting on the phone as you drive. So have you stopped? Yes? Good for you!

What? Some of you haven’t?

OK, you’ve asked for it; I’m calling in the big guns. If you won’t listen to me, then maybe you’ll pay more attention when you hear it from Oprah. That’s right, Oprah herself has turned her attention to this critical issue, bless her heart. In fact, she devoted an entire show to America’s New Deadly Obsession, complete with custom t-shirts and a very catchy slogan (Don’t tempt f8, that txt can w8). But it’s more than just a show. Oprah is starting a movement, the No Phone Zone movement. Thank you so much, dear Oprah!

If you have time, mother recommends the entire episode. It is powerful, and true. Or you can select from various segments, or check out interesting related stories. And if you do nothing else, at the very least PLEASE go to the No Phone Zone to take the pledge.

But I know you’re busy, so in case you don’t have time to head over to Oprah’s place and watch a video, why don’t I just recap mother’s complete series of posts on the topic. The graphics and real life examples are vastly superior on Oprah, but you can find the basic message here…

Have I issued a commandment lately?
Why you should NEVER text while driving
Good news!
Texting is not the only thing teens should NOT do while driving
And driving is not the only thing we should NOT do while texting


Oprah and I are not kidding. This is every bit as dangerous as driving drunk. It is life and death. So just don’t do it, OK? OK! Enough said.

Well, except that mother is SO proud of all of you who are already doing the right thing. Thank you, darlings. Over and out.

Isn’t it about time for another commandment?

You bet! This is a winter commandment, one that wouldn’t normally apply in the south, but the way this winter’s been going, y’all had better listen up too. Here it is…

Before you hit the road, always make sure to clean off the ice and snow.

Why? Because Mother Rider says so, of course, and so does her sister Kacey. And in some states because it’s the law. But mostly because you could kill somebody with that stuff! I’m serious; it’s happened.You’re having a bad enough day already trying to drive on the crappy roads. Do you want to make it worse by killing or maiming the folks in the car behind you or on the sidewalk? Of course not!

I briefly considered citing various state laws on this topic as backup, or even compiling a complete state law digest. Some, for example, forbid any ice or snow and others just worry about the windows. Still others don’t mention ice or snow specifically but will bust you for anther offense that’s close enough, like an unsecured load or negligent driving. Fortunately, before I went to all that trouble I remembered that you all are smart enough to get it without extra help. You don’t care if it’s the law, because you know it’s the right thing to do. Right? Right!

You guys are the best!

Have I issued a commandment lately?

I haven’t, have I? Well, it’s about time I did! Here you go…

DON’T TEXT AND DRIVE

And don’t do it while riding your bicycle either. In fact, I’m going to include you pedestrians, too, as well as the rollerbladers and the skateboarders. Did I miss anybody?

First, I have to admit this wasn’t my idea. To be honest, I’m so lame it would never have crossed my mind to worry about this problem. But thanks to The Week, NPR, the American College of Emergency Physicians and my friend Marcia, I am on it! Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

  • A recent survey found that 18% of cell phone users type text messages while driving
  • There is mounting evidence that this behavior leads to accidents and fatalities
  • The ER doc who was interviewed on NPR treated a woman who stumbled over the curb into the path of an oncoming car, and the driver who hit a light pole trying to avoid her as he chatted on his cell phone. And that’s not all. The text injured keep on coming at the rate of about one per week.
  • The American College of Emergency Physicians has issued an alert because they are seeing an alarming increase in text related injuries, every day in big cities like Chicago.
  • Injuries to the nose, mouth, chin and eyes seem to be the most common, because texters tend to fall flat on their faces. Many are fairly minor, but some are more serious, even fatal. For example, there is an email making the rounds called Don’t Text and Drive, that includes hideously graphic photographs of what happened to a Brazilian driver who was allegedly texting or chatting on his cell phone instead of watching out for that truck. Who knows if that was really the cause or not, but who cares? It could have been! The photos are much too gruesome for a cheery blog like this, but if you’re one of those visual learners who can handle the blood and guts, or just plain curious, you can find them on Snopes.
  • So if you must text and you must also drive or walk or whatever, what can you do? You can stop. Then send your text or have your chat. Then you can go. Simple, eh?

Even thinking about that email is too creepy for this normally cheery website so let’s agree that we will NOT text and drive, because I do NOT want to see any more photos like that EVER. And neither do you. Or your family. Trust me. OK?

OK! Thank you very much.