The reason for some of the variation between Boston drivers and
the rest of the country is due to the progressive Massachusetts
Driver Education Manual. Some of the Tips for Better Driving are
worth considering, to wit:
"When competing for a section of road or a parking
space, remember that the vehicle in need of the most body work has
"Although it is altogether possible to fit a 6' car into
a 6' parking space, it is hardly ever possible to fit a 6' car into a
5' parking space.
"Teenage drivers believe that they are immortal, and
drive accordingly. Nevertheless, you should avoid the temptation to
prove them wrong.
"When travelling on a one-way street, stay to the right,
so as not to interfere with oncoming traffic.
"Learning to change lanes takes time and patience. The
best recommendation that can be made is to got to a Celtics
[basketball] game; study the fast break and then go out and
practice it on the highway.
"Never bump a baby carriage out of a crosswalk unless
the kid's really asking for it.
"Directional signals are generally not used except
during vehicle inspection; however, a left-turn signal is appropriate
when making a U-turn on a divided highway.
"When paying tolls, remember that it is necessary to
release the quarter a full 3 seconds before passing the basket if you
are traveling more than 60 MPH.
As wild as driving in Boston proper is, the suburbs around ole'
Bean-Town are equally exciting. For example:
- The car that came off the fastest road into a rotary has the
right of way for as long as other cars saw him come off that road
(about 180 degrees).
- No-passing zones do NOT apply to anything about cars, rather
they prohibit one from relieving oneself when a car is trying to
pass in the opposite lane and is heading straight for you at
- Stop signs are used only when convenient.
- NEVER use turn indicators, it gives everyone else an unfair
advantage. For that matter, disconnecting brake lights really
makes it tough for those idiots around you to second-guess (this
really helps out in shopping centers when parking space is tough
to come by).
- Try not to drive between 3 and 4 in the afternoon, this is
when all the old-timers hop into their Caddy's and go for a drive.
- Beware of people who drive with hats on. (Actually, this
- There are two basic ways to drive in the snow, too slow and
too fast. Each method is based on the simple fact that snow makes
it hard to stop. If you drive too slow, the trouble may move
before you hit it, and if you drive too fast you get out of the
- The old
"Age before beauty
definitely applies, most of the really aggressive drivers
out here drive old Plymouth Furies and Dodge Darts.
- All auto repairs are done no more than one month before
- Beware of housewives between the hours of 10 and 2, they pull
out of shopping centers and elementary schools at 90mph, but then
immediately settle into their more comfortable 15mph (so as not to
jar the brats or groceries).
- If you have to make a left across traffic at a light, coasting
out into traffic 3 seconds before the light turns tells oncoming
traffic that you have them beat.
- U-turns are never illegal, but it's more fun if you miss and
make it a Y-turn so as to tie up as much traffic as possible.
- Never, never, never hit pedestrians (when anyone is looking).
- At 4-way stop intersections, the right of way always goes to
the car that doesn't stop.
- Truckers ALWAYS have the right of way. Most of these guys
aren't from New England and have to fall back on whiskey and
tonnage to get them through our streets - killing a few Yankees
will not bother them in the least (unless they get caught).
Washington Apple Pi IFAQ
lic Sunday, February 8, 1998