Thursday, April 21, 2005

Civil disobedience; drive the speed limit

What a change has happened since daylight savings time has come around. Normal people now drive like they are trying to win the Daytona 500. Have you ever noticed that some of the best people in your neighborhood, people you would trust under almost any circumstance , have a Jeckel and Hyde personality when they leave their driveway? Your friend Mr. or Mrs. Jeckel walks to their car and says, "Good morning neighbor" and the second the key turns they transform into a Dale Earnhart-Mr. Hyde on steroids. As they careen down the main street in your neighborhood you can see they are ready to trade paint.

Is this just a Farragut phenomenon? I travel all over Knox County and it seems worse here. Of course no one speeds in front of Sam and Andy's because that might as well be the Farragut Police station. You might say the yellow flag is out on that stretch of Kingston Pike.

Myself and some of my neighbors have started our own act of civil disobedience. We drive the speed limit. The strange thing is that it is catching on. When ever you do something so different from everyone else it is immediately cool. It is kind of like saying, "Yeah I will get there when I feel like it." Modern day James Dean.

An interesting item from the Farragut Press Talk on the same subject:

Today, Wednesday, April 6, I prevented a serious T-bone crash when a teenager pulled out in front of me in his black SUV at the west end of Concord Park on Northshore Drive. I had to swerve twice to avoid him, risking danger to myself. I had to swerve a second time to avoid the guardrail at the bridge. I righted my vehicle and I traveled on my way down west Northshore Drive.

By then my adrenaline was pumping and I was smelling the burned rubber from my tires. But the teenager escaped and I escaped, and everyone else in our pathway escaped injury. I was driving 40 mph, the speed limit. I get down to the intersection of Choto Road and south Northshore, close to it, when I notice a blond adult in a small white SUV with the big tire on it flashing her lights. I thought she was a helpful, kind woman who had seen the accident and she wanted to offer some information, and I waved at her. But that was not the case; she was angry because I was not traveling at the speed she wanted, which would be over 40 mph. I was still shook up. I made my left turn to go onto Choto Road at that flashing light and she blew.

Still being shook up, I looked back at her and I pulled into the neighborhood there … and the guy behind her was shaking his head like I was an idiot. … I’m just sorry that I have neighbors like that in West Knoxville. … I’m sorry I was driving so slow if I offended them, but if I hadn’t been there it could have been their turn with that young man, and perhaps they would learn to be a little more appreciative of people who follow the speed limits around here. I am known as a good driver, I have good reflexes … the affluence side isn’t worth a dime when it comes to their character, a lot of ’em aren’t worth a dime.

Comments:
It's much worse than the Daytona 500. NASCAR drivers don't have their kids in the car, and they aren't driving around people who do. NASCAR drivers aren't chatting on cell phones in a conversation that could easily wait 'til later.

On the other hand, NASCAR drivers have shown the same kind of road rage, bullying, and paint swapping you'll see in Farragut if you drive responsibly.
 
Of course no one speeds in front of Sam and Andy's because that might as well be the Farragut Police station. You might say the yellow flag is out on that stretch of Kingston Pike.

I really hope you were being sarcastic when you wrote that. I head to the Blockbuster Strip Mall (which is basically across the street) 3 times a week and that strip is crazy! People that want to turn left into that strip mall take their lives into their hands because people ZOOM past there every day. And just when I think I can turn, someone speeds up to close the gap so I can't turn.

I have already stopped driving like a maniac in most circumstances and have started driving the speed limit if you've read my blog, but creating change for the other 19,000+ citizens and then all the other folks that drive through Farragut every day will take some doing.

I think it's High Time to start calling in reinforcements! I don't care if the Sheriff thinks that he doesn't issue enough tickets or too many. We're losing too many lives (1 being too many. Period.)

Hopping down from the soapbox...
FI
 
I have seen eastbound traffic slow down at Sam and Andy's when there are two Sheriffs cars there. They slow down and then when they pass the Weigels they step on the gas.

You bring up a good point about the speed of the traffic going by the Blockbuster shopping center.

It is very difficult to make a left turn out of that strip mall. I have seen cars pull out in front of speeding traffic just because they have become impatient. This is a dangerous place.
 
BTW, driving the speed limit make's that Civil OBEDIENCE! In order for it to be disobedient, you have to be breaking the law...
 
BTW, driving the speed limit make's that Civil OBEDIENCE! In order for it to be disobedient, you have to be breaking the law...


Technically that is correct. I know what you mean.

What I am saying is that most people break the law and speed in Farragut. Even in subdivisions. When I drive the speed limit these people tailgate me, flash their lights, and sometimes blow their car horn.

I am being civil to them but I am not going to speed up just because they want me to. I am being disobedient to those that want to push me into speeding.

Why be pushed? I am not going to make a hand gesture or get mad and if they want to tailgate me go ahead.

It used to bother me very much to be tailgated and I would speed up. What I found in the last three years is that I could not go fast enough for them to stop tailgating. So I they must tailgate me then we will both go the speed limit.

If they hit my car then so be it. It took a while to get over being pushed at a right or left turn by someone behind me that is determined to force their will on me. I just decided they will have to wait that extra second or two and if they hit me I have uninsured motorists insurance.

Why be stressed? This is a beautiful area. You cannot appreciate it driving 60 mph.
 
Why be stressed? This is a beautiful area. You cannot appreciate it driving 60 mph.


Absolutely true! Folks should slow down and I think the Town Fathers need to start considering lowering the speed limits on all roads by 5-10 mph. Kingston Pike should be 35 mph, not 70!
 
very interesting work here. made me think about the way I drive.
 
I always drive the speed limit or below. I ain't in a bit of hurry to get anywhere.
 
Anonymous said...
very interesting work here. made me think about the way I drive.


If we all work together we can save lives. Each person’s example of personal responsibility affects others. It encourages them to be responsible also.

Unfortunately it also works in reverse. If everyone decides to ignore personal responsibility it encourages others to do the same. Each of us decides.
 
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