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Massachusetts driving style


I picked this up on the "weights" mailing list.  It may give non-New
Englanders some insight to our "unique" driving style...

required quattro content...I do not drive my Coupe Quattro in the below
manner...Quattro allows me to avoid those who do, in all weather 

Peter Schulz
1990 Coupe Quattro


>"MAsshole Driving 101"
>There are 3 rules to keep in mind when driving in New England, esp.
>Massachusetts.  Following these 3 rules can not guarantee your
>safety, but they will help to explain the apparent extraordinary high
>number of seemingly clueless and/or handicapped people licensed to 
>drive automobiles in this state.
>1. See that little thing sticking out of your steering column?
>    You know, that thing that makes those annoying green arrows start
>    blinking when you move it up or down?  Forget it.  Throw it out.
>    Remove it from your car.  It's a vestigial organ.  Totally unnecessary.
>    If you want to make a turn, then by golly, just slow down and turn
>    whenever you feel so inclined to do so.
>2. Remember what you were taught about "right of way", esp. at an
>    intersection?  It went something like: "Cars going straight have the
>    'right of way' over cars making a turn"?  Well, that silly rule was
>    written for people *outside* of Massachusetts.  Don't even concern
>    yourself with such rules of etiquette.  Remember: the first 5 cars
>    who want to make a turn at an intersection have the *right of way*
>    over you and anyone else who wants to go straight thru the 
>    intersection.
>3.  Finally, red lights.  Ah yes, red lights.  Here in Mass, we employ
>    what is commonly referred to (seriously, it's in the law books) as:
>    "The 5 second rule".  This rule states:  "All moving vehicles are
>    allowed to continue on thru an intersection for up to 5 seconds
>    after the traffic light has turned red."  Knowledge of this rule can
>    indeed save your life, because if you were actually ignorant enough
>    to go when the light turned green, you might find yourself rammed
>    by an oncoming vehicle that was obediently following the "5 second
>    rule".  Of course, it'd be all your fault.
>There are some other rules, such as being able to drive in the
>breakdown lanes, why you should avoid all Volvos, or proper etiquette 
>when attempting to navigate a "rotary" 
>(referred to as "traffic circles" by us native NYers).
>[ Hint: there are *no* rules when traversing a Traffic Circle from Hell
>  (Massachusetts rotary).  You simply take your life into your own
>  hands, close your eyes, and go for it! ]
>As noted above, knowledge of these rules will go a long way in
>helping you to calm down, and maybe even make that peptic ulcer
>subside.  It's kind of funny... New Englanders have this impression
>that NYers are such rude and obnoxious drivers.  Sure, if you (another
>motorist) somehow screw up on the road, we *will* flip you the
>bird, curse you out, and wish The Apocalyps on you, your family and
>your descendants... but that's only if you screw up.
>In New England, *every one* drives like this... so it's accepted behavior.
>Hence, no one gets upset.  Hence, New Englanders think that New
>Englanders are polite and courteous drivers.
>An outsider (esp. NYers) would be better off if they just understood
>this behavior, accepted it, and assimilated it into their own driving
>Thank you, and good night.
>Ron Cecchini

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