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They Don’t Teach You THAT In Driver’s Ed

, , , | Learning | December 11, 2017

After being tailgated twice in two days, I remembered a story my Driver’s Ed teacher told us:

When he was a teen and newly licensed driver, he had the loan of his dad’s car. Unfortunately for him, he either wasn’t paying attention or didn’t notice a short concrete post when he backed up, and he did some severe damage to the tail end. He drove around a bit thinking, “Oh, God… what am I going to tell my dad? He’s going to kill me.” Then he got an idea.

He was wearing his seatbelt and was traveling city streets, so wasn’t driving fast. He deliberately drove slower and waited until he got a tailgater. Then he slammed on the brakes, and the inevitable happened.

He got out shouting, “Look what you did to my dad’s car!”

The other guy got the ticket, had his insurance pay for the repairs, and probably got a raise in rates. And guess what? It was perfectly legal of my teacher.

It’s your responsibility to maintain a safe stopping distance… not the driver in front of you. A driver CAN bring a car to a stop for whatever reason.

Just keep that in mind next time you get the urge to get on someone’s tail on the road: he just might REALLY be asking for it.

 

Will Need To Ease Your Way Out Of That One

, , , | Learning | November 7, 2017

(I am preparing to sit the theory test for my learner’s permit.)

Employee: “Would you like to sit the test in electronic or paper format?”

Me: “Whatever’s easier.”

Mum: *gives me a weird look*

Employee: “They are both the same test.”

Me: *confused* “Yeah, I know.”

Employee: *pauses* “I’ll set up a computer for you.”

(I didn’t realise what I had said wrong until after I got home. I was meaning to ask for whatever made her job easier!)

Driving Away The Anxiety

, , , , , | Hopeless | September 16, 2017

I witnessed the death of a close family member in a car accident when I was younger. Because of this, I feel pretty insecure when driving and have an overall anxiety when being in a car. This also led to me failing my practical driving test several times, which only made my anxiety stronger.

One week before my last driving test, another close family member died in a car accident. This hit me hard, and I could barely cope with my emotions. My anxiety was so strong I could not even stand near a car without freaking out internally, let alone sit in a car or drive myself. I called my driving instructor and told him what had happened. He was really kind, and managed to reschedule my driving test for two weeks.

On the day of my driving test, I still was not able to cope with the death of my family member, and my anxiety was still pretty strong. I met with my driving instructor before the driving test, and he told me that he had spoken to the examiner. He told him about the death of my family member and my anxiety. He also agreed with him that they wanted to be silent throughout my driving test so that I could better cope with my insecurity and better concentrate. I did not recognize it while driving, but this helped a lot.

My anxiety hit me pretty strong during the driving test, and I had a feeling of internal panic most of the time. I could not look somewhere else, only on the streets and mirrors as I was supposed to do. When I panicked a lot internally, I managed to look to my driving instructor, only to see him smiling at me. I still was really insecure, but it helped me so much and I was able to drive at least a bit more relaxed. I think his smile made more of a difference than he realized.

I passed the driving test that day, but only with the help of my driving instructor who gave me a feeling of security in my situation of anxiety. I gave him a hug after the driving test, but could not find any words to thank him. We drove back to the driving school to sort out the last paperwork. He hugged me one last time and I left. I wish I had been able to thank him in a better way. He helped me a lot and he deserved some words of gratitude. I hope I can see him again in the future. I am glad that I got to know him.

This Lesson Took A Bad Turn

| Learning | July 15, 2017

(Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand that driver’s-ed teachers have a hell of a job. But I swear my instructor was just making things worse for himself. This is just one example.)

Instructor: “Okay, so, you’re going to make this turn coming up.”

Me: “Okay.” *slows down and moves to turn the wheel*

Instructor: “No! Too soon! Wait!”

Me: “Um… okay…”

(I’ve slowed down quite a bit now because he’s made me nervous.)

Instructor: “Not yet!”

(We’re now half-the-car through the intersection.)

Instructor: “Waaaait…”

(The nose of the car is now almost PAST the intersection.)

Instructor: “NOW! TURN TURN TURN! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!”

(I try to turn, but this is hindered by the fact that we are WAY too far past the turn-off, and the fact that immediately after yelling for me to turn my instructor slams on his failsafe brake, and I end up almost in the grass on the corner.)

Instructor: *turning to me* “So, you turned too wide.”

Me: “…?!”

(Now having been a driver for almost a decade, I have learned that there is, in fact, a window of more than a nanosecond in which you can make a right turn. I give some credit to this instructor for the fact that I’m STILL a nervous driver.)

Back Up On Your Expectations

, | Learning | May 29, 2017

(I am sitting in driving school and we are learning about reversing. Because all the shops are within walking distance of where I grew up I don’t see the need to get a car so I’m a little older than everyone in the class, but know next to nothing about driving. My instructor, however, seems to think because I’m older I should know more than my classmates.)

Instructor: “Okay, everyone, we’re going to learn about reversing. What are the colors of your reverse lights?”

(One student says red but the rest of the class can’t figure out the color of the other light. Before I can say anything the class sends out the guesses I was going to say so I stay quiet trying to think of what else it could be.)

Instructor: *turns to me* “[My Name], do you know what color the final light is?”

Me: “No idea.”

Instructor: *annoyed* “Why not?!”

Me: “Because I’m usually IN the car when it’s backing up.”