Thursday, January 19, 2012

Got something to say?

On my drive home today I heard a siren, saw an ambulance going the opposite way on a busy street, and pulled over (as is the law of our good nation.)

A car in front of the ambulance, instead of pulling to the right, kind of shimmied to the left... giving the ambulance room to pass on the right. I don't know what happened. Maybe the driver just got flustered. Wailing sirens and flashing lights can be discombobulating things.

That is when I suddenly heard an angry, amplified male voice blurt: "This is where you pull to the right, not cut me off!"

Wow. Pissy ambulance driver ahoy! I mean, did he really have to say it like THAT? Okay, sure, he's just trying to save a life... and he probably has to deal with people making poor (or flustered, or selfish) traffic decisions day after day. Maybe he finally just snapped. Still, it seemed a bit harsh.

Meanwhile, I didn't know ambulances had loudspeakers. But there you go. The drivers must need to yell at traffic a lot. Sirens just aren't good enough anymore. A siren basically just says: "Yield, please! Mozy on over to the shoulder!" But a loudspeaker, oh, a loudspeaker can tell those jerks what's what, and tell it to 'em GOOD!

As I continued my drive home, my mind began to whirl.  "What if EVERY vehicle had one of those?" Yelling across traffic would be so much more effective than honking, which, if you think about it, can be pretty ambiguous. You never know if the person honking at you is trying to kindly alert you to something, or if they're mad at you, or if you're going too slow, or if there's a possum on your roof. But with loudspeakers on every car, just think of the wonderful communicating we'd be able to accomplish! Now, when somebody cuts you off, you can not ONLY let them know they are a big fat monkey rump, but you can let everyone within a 200-foot radius know AS WELL! Let the communication floodgates open!

Or, you know, don't.

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