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We Teach Driving Like Your Life Depends On It

Just when you think you’ve seen it all…

December 4, 2018

By Steve Wallace
Times Colonist, November 30th 2018

An irate cyclist throws feces at a car on Cook Street on November 17th 2018

 

 

Years ago, one of my driving instructor mentors told me to beware of complacency when doing in-car practical driving lessons.
Just when you believe you have seen it all, something happens that you would never anticipate.

The driver-cyclist altercation on Nov. 17 in downtown Victoria, in broad daylight, would certainly qualify as an unforeseen, unexpected and totally inappropriate altercation.

It went something like this.

A cyclist was irate with a driver’s behaviour, while sharing the curb lane of two lanes on Cook Street.
Perhaps he had been cut off or suffered some similar close call.
He got off his bike and defecated on the road. He then picked up the feces and flung it at the offending driver’s vehicle.

Bystanders were spellbound and not sure what they were seeing.
Some took video on their cellphones.
It made the top of the news that evening, and was the stuff of the talk shows all the next day.

This newspaper carried the story in greater detail the following day.
The driver of the motor vehicle had the good judgment to stay in the vehicle: Getting out would have made a crappy day even worse.
The cyclist left quickly and at the time of writing has yet to be identified.
Most observers could hardly believe they were witnessing such disgusting behaviour.

I am not sure what I would have done in the situation.

What would you have done? Just when you think you have seen everything.
A man stopped to get mail from a rural post box at a convenience store.
He grabbed the mail, threw it in the passenger window and went into the store to shop.

While he was in the store, his vehicle began to move forward.
He had left it in neutral and not used the parking brake.
A witness bolted after the runaway vehicle, jumped into it and managed to stop it with considerable force, without power assist brakes.
The owner then left the store, assumed someone was stealing his vehicle and gave chase.

It was the intervention of other witnesses that turned a possible altercation into a heartfelt thank-you.

I was one of those witnesses.

The roundabout can be a mysterious merry-go-round for some.
There was a driver who missed an exit, stopped and backed up about half the distance of the roundabout, to finally make a proper exit.
The whole reason for a roundabout is to negate the possibility of a head-on crash.
To have a driver use reverse gear to right a wrong, when all that was required was one more time around, is ridiculous.

Just when you think you have seen everything.…

A very entertaining situation occurred on a B.C. ferry.
After all boarding of vehicles was complete, people exited their vehicles and headed to the upper decks.
The ferry was loaded to capacity with vehicles.

One of the exiting drivers saw another putting an anti-theft device on the steering wheel of his vehicle.
The “club” was very visible.
The driver who had placed the device on his steering wheel was asked if it really did work to prevent theft.

He proudly announced its effectiveness, saying he had never had a vehicle stolen when it was in use.
The observer asked one more telling question: Where would a thief take it now? The driver with the anti-theft device looked somewhat dumbfounded.
Upon return to the lower deck, it was noticeable that the “club” was no longer engaged.

Force of habit, but embarrassing nonetheless.

 

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