Monday, December 01, 2008

Surviving Defensive Driving

I'm convinced that this is less about educating drivers and more about deterring us ADHD-always-in-a-hurry folks (speed again and we'll make you sit through another round of Defensive Driving!). The people who need to hear this are the slow-pokes who get in the left lane (aka "the fast lane"). There's a statement about "slow down and pull off to the right" when traveling on a 2-lane blacktop and you're plagued by someone on your tale. On a recent trip to Bryan, the speed limit on the 2-lane blacktop was 70 mph. Understandably, a lot of the locals are comfortable doing a lot less than 70. Others were comfortable doing more than 70. I was happy to do 70, but unhappy when trapped behind yokels driving for miles at 55.

Tired of reading? Listen to the entire course with our audio read-along feature.

If you've never taken the on-line course, I can assure you the greatest challenge is the timer. I'm a fast reader so much of the course is focused on counting down 5....4....3....2....1 waiting for the timer to hit 0 so I can click to the next page. I should be embarrassed to admit how many times I've taken Defensive driving. My first time was in an elementary school 20 years ago, taught by a DPS trouper. It's not coincidence that one "took" better than the rest and many years passed before I found myself again in the classroom. I've done the comedy club routine - which was painful. Comedian-wanna-be's teaching unfunny material. I've actually tried this one in various mediums. Then I tried the DD/Dinner specials - which always seemed to be hosted in the local greasy spoons. I've done on-line DD several times. You may be noticing that DD has not cured me of my speeding ways.

It's not that I don't know how to drive safely, defensively, slowly.... I seriously think the gentlemen in blue who patrol the road between here and my old residence in Lago Vista have missed me. I haven't gotten a speeding ticket in the years since I moved away until.... I took my Mustang out for a spin one Sunday morning, trying to juggle church services. My wonderful husband was giving witness to his prison ministry at our old church and my wonderful son was running the projector at our new church. I told hubby I'd be there at the 8 am and 10:30 am services, and I told son I'd get him to the 10:30 am service and at some point during the 8 am service I discovered the 10:30 am service began at 10! So, I was hustling to get home sooner rather than later in order to get our son to church and myself back to get the picture?

Tired of reading? Listen to the entire course with our audio read-along feature.

I've tried deferred adjudication, and it's not a bad way to go. I can't remember now why I didn't opt for that... oh yeah! it takes longer to process at the court. You have to meet with the DA. I was gearing up for my trip to Asia when I got the ticket, and I'd just returned when I went to the courthouse. I sure didn't anticipate the job change. Now I'm just trying to grind through the mandatory 6 hours of timed spurts of attention. If I let my attention wander too far, I'll time out and have to backtrack. At least the quiz questions for this particular on-line training have been all common-sense and not "are you paying attention?" I hated the last one where they asked things like "what color shirt was the driver wearing?"

One new twist with the course I'm taking now is that they offered (and I accepted) to acquire the copy of my driving record. It seems like they're charging 2.5X the rate I'd pay if I could be bothered to find the office and make the request in person - and it is well worth the cost!

I just read the section on aggressive driving. I don't consider myself aggressive...maybe assertive. Mostly in a hurry. Not hateful. I don't flip the bird, I don't honk, I don't call names (much). But, my goal is that someday people won't flip the bird at me or call me names. That would be good. Of all of the bad behavior listed, texting my sister with slug bug sightings and driving too fast are my primary faults. Text messaging is a new one on the list of road challenges. I don't remember that even being mentioned the last time I took DD.
Google yielded plenty of data that confirms this is a bad practice.

Tired of reading? Listen to the entire course with our audio read-along feature.

Did I mention that the particular flavor of on-line DD that I've pursued offers a $10 upgrade to the illiterate? I'm amused that I could simply blog and let the course run as background noise.

Part I is over. I'll pick up where I left off tomorrow.



dallasdiva said...

It pains me to even hear of you having to take dd. I've taken it waaaayyyyy too many times my own self; )

you gotta wonder said...

I know! I appreciate the sympathy. I'll finish tonight, come hell or high water.

Todd said...

I can see that you put a lot of hard work on your blog, I’m sure I’d visit here more often.Great job, keep posting interesting articles here. All The Best.

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