|(Pic courtesy of Pexels.com)|
I want to comment on something that I see happen fairly often. I was riding as a passenger in my buddy's car this past weekend when he was inching out to zoom across a busy intersection where there is no stop light. Friends from Schuylkill County will know this intersection. It's the one with Ken's Tires and Hoss's Restaurant on the corners at the Cressona Mall. You have to pretend you are in the 80s video game "Frogger" and zoom across the busy road to the mall area. I HATE this intersection.
It's rather nerve-racking on an average day. You look right and left and repeat several times to avoid traffic driving through as well as traffic from ALL directions turning in and out of the shopping complexes on both sides of the roadway! If you get a time where there is no traffic coming from anywhere, consider yourself lucky because that is a rarity.
He had inched out, looking to make his move. Someone was driving up to make a left hand turn into the Cressona Mall complex where we were trying to cross into. Suddenly, some dip-shit zoomed around the turning car and narrowly avoided T-boning my buddy's car.
I SCREAMED "LOOK OUT!!!!!" I slammed on my imaginary passenger brake and braced for impact. The young idiot zipped around amid cursing and horn honking from my buddy.
He barked at me, "I SAW HIM!!!!"
Me, "WELL I'M JUST TRYING TO HELP! WHAT IF YOU DIDN'T SEE HIM?"
"WELL I DID, SO I DIDN'T NEED YOU FREAKING OUT!"
Now to be fair, yes ... yes ... I did freak out in the manner that a Frazzled at Forty guy would. And then I thought about it. I would've reacted the same way as he did to passengers in my car.
Whenever my sister Sheryl slams on her imaginary passenger brake and yells, "Watch out!!!" I bark back at her, "I SEE THEM! I DON'T NEED YOU TELLING ME HOW TO DRIVE!"
Why is it that we take such offense to someone who is just trying to help us avoid a potential accident? We all do it. The driver goes immediately on the defensive basically accusing the passenger of not trusting their driving ability. I've been on both sides and reacted the same way.
Why is it that it is so hard that we cannot accept someone's honest concern that we may get into an accident and instead interpret their observation as hostile criticism. And then, hostility meets hostility. Your thoughts?
What we SHOULD learn to do is to recognize that our passenger is acting as a second set of eyes in the happenchance that an oncoming accident may occur. And if you are the passenger, realize that if you alert the driver to avoid an accident, he or she may already be aware of the situation and may find it offensive that you are questioning their judgment driving. Either way, a little patience in understanding the differences and similarities of concern versus criticism could prevent the issue from evolving into a screaming match!
Food for thought. 😉