Jewish World Review Dec. 24, 2004/ 12 Teves, 5765

Greg Crosby

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Consumer Reports

Driving Me Crazy | There are two kinds of drivers on the streets these days, idiots and louses. Oh sure, there are still some decent folks behind the wheel, like the guy who will actually let you merge into the lane, or the driver who doesn't block the intersection, but these types are getting rarer and rarer. The vast majority are idiots and louses. Sometimes an idiot driver can also be a louse, and vise versa, but usually they fit neatly into one or the other category.

Let's start with the idiot first, since there are so many of them. The idiot driver is the genius who pulls out in front of you really fast and then slows down to a crawl once he's there. Then there's the idiot who is so busy talking on the cell phone that he just can't be bothered with driving — even though he is operating an automobile in traffic.

Another idiot is the one who doesn't know what a turn signal is for. There are loads of these drivers. Or how about the idiot who whips a U-turn in the middle of a busy intersection? And then we have dangerous idiots like the ones who run stop signs and signals. And the ones who tailgate and the ones who just don't look before they pull out or change lanes.

The louses are just plain nasty drivers who don't give a damn about anyone but themselves. These are the SOB's who, if you put on your turn signal to change lanes, will speed up so you can't get in. A louse will cut you off every time. They race past the other cars, darting in and out just so they can be the first one to make it to the red light.

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In the mind of the louse driver, no one has any right to be on the road except him. He deserves to be the first one in line and he will cheat to get there. This is the bum who refuses to wait his turn when two or more lanes merge into one. He will continue to drive past all the other cars that are waiting patiently in line and try to cut in at the front. And of course, there is always an idiot at the front who will let him in!

A louse will take up two parking spots in the lot. Just like the idiot, a louse doesn't use his turn signal either — that's when it gets hard to tell if you are dealing with an idiot, a louse, or a combo. After a certain point it really doesn't matter. It's like caring whether you've been poisoned by arsenic or strychnine — what's the difference, you're dead either way.

I wish I had a calm, reasonable solution for handling the idiot/louse driver problem, but I just don't. Whenever I encounter these types, which is literally every time I drive, I want to commit murder. I'm not just using an expression when I say that, I mean it. I want to kill them. I want to take the idiot out of his stupid car and shake his imbecilic head until his brown teeth crumble. The louse makes me even angrier than the idiot. The louse should be boiled in his own pudding, to coin a phrase from another Scrooge. As for the combo idiot/louse well, let us just say that I wish him nothing good.

See what these bad people do to me? They make me crazy! They turn me into a violent, vindictive maniac! I'm not really like that at all. I am a really swell fellow. Honest. Listen, all I wanted to do when I left the house this morning was to get some cash from the bank, fill the car with gas, and pick up the laundry. I left in a good mood. I was singing show tunes. I was a happy go lucky man. Now I want blood! After less than an hour on city streets I've turned into Charles Manson, Hannibal Lechter and Usoma bin Laden all in one!

Please don't cut me off, I beg you.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2004 Greg Crosby