Tag Archives: healthy and safe driving

Driving DOs and DON’Ts, Stephen Colbert edition


Oh sure, you would all listen to Mother’s every commandment and do it because I said so. I know that. But still, it never hurts to have video support from your favorite famous TV journalist, right? Right! So I was thrilled and grateful for this perfect scenario that illustrates a generous variety of salubrious driving DOs and DON’Ts. And it’s very entertaining. Check it out…

The Colbert Report

 

Wasn’t that fun? Go ahead, watch it again. I’ll wait.

I know you’re all over it and easily identified every one, but it’s my job, so let me just recap those DOs and DON’Ts for you. I mean DON’Ts and DOs.

  • DON’T change lanes in the Lincoln Tunnel. Those are double yellow lines and this is not Vermont. Or Pennsylvania.
  • DO wear your helmet. Good boy!
  • DON’T pop wheelies in traffic. Or DO be careful – it does look like fun. 
  • DO refrain from writing notes while you’re driving. Good man!
  • DON’T use your iPhone for videos or anything else while you’re driving. EVER! Do you hear me? This means you! Every one of you. Stop it!! I mean it!!!
  • DON’T make me tell you again!
  • DO enjoy the antics of the other drivers in the tunnel, or on the bridge, or wherever.
  • DON’T get mad at them. Or get even. And whatever you do, DON’T have road rage at them. Or you. 
  • DO use your Rider Method to make up funny stories about them instead, like the jelly beans. How can you be mad at your fellow jelly beans?
  • DON’T fail to watch the Colbert Report on Comedy Central at 11:30 whenever he isn’t on vacation.
  • DO use your DVR to save it for the following day after the news if you’re too old to stay up that late.
  • DON’T forget what Stephen and I said about the distractions. They are deadly. And we DON’T want you dead.
  • DON’T believe me? Spend some quality time with this tragic collection of real life stories from D!STRACTION.GOV: 
 
  • DO learn to laugh more, rage less and text never while you’re driving. Immediately.
  • DON’T forget that mother nags you about this stuff because she cares, not because she’s crabby. And because that’s what mothers do.
And if you see Stephen Colbert, give him a Cheery Wave 🙂 TGISC! 
 

Mother’s shouldn’t be belated Back to School safety message

And why shouldn’t it? Because school ought not to start before Labor Day. That’s why. Any questions? Good, let’s move on, beginning with the classics, like behaving prudently around school buses and in school zones and watching out for the kiddos wherever they are. Do NOT hit them! Ever!! If you could use a refresher, check out this list of Back to School Safety tips that was kindly published by the nice folks at AARP.

Are you wondering what back to school safety message would be complete without harping at least a little about NOT texting while driving? NOT this one! And since some other nice folks at BMW have kindly published a charming little video that makes the point much more beautifully than Mother ever could on her limited budget, she will gratefully take advantage of their generosity instead of making her own. Thanks, BMW!

For a nice change of pace, we’re picking on the parents here instead of the teens, so as to be crystal clear that NOBODY of any age should be texting while driving. Period. Got it?

Let’s finish up with a little driving-to-school safety quiz from Riders on the Road, shall we? Are you ready?

Here’s an exercise in practical arrangement of your driving activities. See if you can find the flaw in the following morning routine:

1)      Buckle the kids into their seats securely

2)      Start the minivan

3)      Pull out in front of a nice lady in a red Subaru

4)      Wander along in slow motion, crossing the double yellow lines every now and then

5)      Wake up

6)      Turn into the elementary school parking lot

7)      Deliver the little tykes safely to school

What’s out of place here? Right! I’d move step 5 up to first place, wouldn’t you? That could eliminate steps 3 and 4 altogether and vastly increase the odds that 7 will be accomplished successfully. Good work!

Did I say finish up? Just kidding! Because there’s always one more thing to nag you about, and this time it’s drowsy driving. Seriously, you know I hate to pester you but it’s my job, so I must. Would you like to hear it form the experts instead? Here you go …

Now let’s get some sleep! Nitey nite! And please, have a happy healthy and safe school year!

Truck drivers on drugs: absolutely NOT salubrious

Apparently, crack abusers have been picked on for quite some time when it comes to sentencing laws, but that’s all behind them now thanks to the recently passed federal Fair Sentencing Act. Of course, Mother understands and appreciates the fair’s fair concept perfectly, so would be the last to complain about more fairness in penalties for crack vs. regular cocaine.

But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t want to complain. Oh no! Because she has recently heard that the one and only crack addict it’s been her misfortune to be acquainted with (briefly, thank goodness) is not only out of jail already, he’s back on the road with you and me driving a truck, and not some puny little pickup either, but a big truck, one that requires a Commercial Driver’s License and a theoretical zero tolerance policy for drugs. And this is after two previous accidents that involved wiping out a truck and a car on two separate occasions, evading the drug test after one and testing positive for cocaine after the other. Oh, and earning generous insurance settlements in the process.

So what she wants to complain about today is this: never mind putting them in jail, could we just get them off the road please?

OK, so all of this is strictly hearsay (again, thank goodness), and pretty hard to believe I might add, so I have to admit that considerably more scientific research ought to be done before I scare the pants off my dear blog readers. And since the last thing in the world I want to do is get close enough to this particular crackhead to confirm or refute this particular rumor, I believe I will cheat by googling instead. You don’t mind, do you?

Google results are in and sure enough, major news organizations have done the serious investigative work for me. (Thanks, guys!) Here’s a 2007 report from NBC News on GAO findings that it’s easy for truckers to cheat on drug tests:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Oh, great! But that was three years ago, so the industry has probably cleaned up its act in the meantime, now that it knows what’s going on, right? No, wrong! Here’s a more recent account (November, 2009), from Fox News Chicago:

 Lord knows I hate to be critical, but isn’t there something seriously wrong with a state regulatory system that refuses to renew a cosmetology license for someone with a past DUI record, but has no problem renewing a CDL for a crack abuser? That’s easy. Yes. Not that we don’t appreciate your worrying about our hair, but if you don’t mind, we’d rather be the victim of an occasional bad haircut than be squashed like a bug by an 18-wheeler. So please, please, regulators, work on those priorities, would you? And hurry!

Goofy weather: Climate Change?

Or just good old Mother Nature’s crazy sense of humor?

Good question! Mother R is all in favor of a crazy sense of humor, and appreciates Mother N’s going to all this trouble for a good laugh, but she’s beginning to suspect this may be more than just an elaborate April Fools joke.

I know my friends in the south didn’t begrudge our enjoying a relatively mild, snow-free winter up here in the Northeast Kingdom while you all were getting slammed with cold and snow, but in the spirit of fair’s fair, I think I should share that after our warmest March ever, we’re now having our third April snowfall this year, and it’s not over yet.

Want to see? Here’s a shot from this morning…


Poor little robin.

And apparently it’s not just us. According to USA Today by way of my favorite news magazine, The Week, this was the warmest March globally in the entire 130 years that the National Climatic Data Center has kept records. Really, Mother N!

So what does this have to do with driving? Well, it’s a stretch, but the goofy weather theme is a wonderful excuse to share this goofy safe driving in the snow performance by a couple of extremely goofy weathermen. And they’re right. Enjoy!