Last week, I came across a road rage story that amazed me.
A woman in New Hampshire was so upset with another driver that she got out of her car, jumped into the other person’s car, and began shocking the driver with a stun gun.
This crazy lady shocked a pregnant lady because the pregnant woman had driven 35 mph on a road where the speed limit was 35 mph.
This incredible story comes on the heels of another road rage story that made me shake my head. I saw where a man in San Jose beat another driver (allegedly, of course) with a hammer.
The man with the hammer said fearing for his safety caused him to hit the other driver in the head with the hammer.
After reading about the New Hampshire and San Jose incidents, I wondered if my run-ins with aggressive drivers in Belmont could have escalated to road rage.
Less than a week after moving to Belmont, I was sitting on Maywood at the stop sign waiting to make a right turn onto Ralston. A vehicle pulled up behind me and seconds later the driver began honking the car’s horn.
At first, I thought the driver was trying to get my attention to let me know I had left something on top of my vehicle or my tail light was out.
But when I looked at my rearview mirror and saw the driver’s face, I knew the non-stop horn blowing was out of anger.
The next morning the same driver did the same thing to me. Only this time I swear the driver started blowing the horn from half way down the street.
The horn-blowing driver is not even the craziest thing that has ever happened to me in Belmont. One morning, I was on Ralston, waiting to make a left turn onto Maywood.
A woman headed east on Ralston, having just made a left turn onto Ralston from Academy Avenue, not only honked at me, but gave me the finger and shouted, “Go f*** yourself!”
I’m still not sure why the woman was angry at me, but I think it’s because she felt I should have turned left. Not that she gave any indication she was going to slow down enough for me to make a left turn safely.
While I always assumed I was completely right in situations involving aggressive drivers, according to the experts on road rage, I’ve made some mistakes.
For instance, with the driver honking the horn non-stop, I shook my head both days and on the second day I threw both my arms in the air as if to say, "Hey, I’m doing the best I can."
Such actions, according to the experts, can escalate a horn blowing to a fight in the streets.
The experts say it is important for all drivers to see things from other person’s point of view. And that we shouldn’t assume the worst about people.
That driver weaving in and out of traffic might not be a jerk, but a world-renowned surgeon trying to get to the hospital to save someone’s life.
After hearing this, I tried it. I closed my eyes and tried to see the horn honking from the perspective of the man behind me.
I envisioned him being a CEO rushing to the office to close a deal. He spotted my vehicle waiting to make a right turn.
All I want is to get to the office to close this deal that will save the jobs of 422 people. Doesn’t this guy know how much I want to help the local economy? Why is he shaking his head?
The CEO took a deep breath (more advice from the experts) and exhaled slowly. But he was so excited about saving those 422 jobs that he used the only motivational tool at his disposal, his car’s horn.
He honked the horn. And in horn language, the horn said, “Sorry to do this, but I’m in a hurry! I have to get to the office to close this deal.”
When I put myself in the shoes of the driver honking at me, I honestly feel less animosity toward the guy. After all, he just wanted to save a few jobs.
As for the lady who flipped me the bird, I pretended she was a preschool teacher on her way to work. Her concern for the kiddies made her overreact that day.
I envisioned her driving by and waving at me for not making a left turn. She honked her horn and in the horn language it said, “I wanted you to make a left turn, but since you didn’t, go f*** yourself.”