Friday, April 11, 2008

The Path Of Least Resistance (PLR)

I like to call it PLR...basically it's what I try to inspire people to do when I happen to be in the car with them.

You know those people, friends or family, that drive like they are God's gift to driving. The ones that believe they can get around any kind of traffic they happen upon by taking what they refer to as "Shortcuts"

But those shortcuts take you to places you have never seen and all the twisting and turning through back streets, the herky-jerky starts and stops , all turn you into a sort of bobble head as you sit mesmerized by the efforts of your driver to save precious seconds of time to get to where you are going.

I mean what if you are headed for the dentist? Really, they will drill you when you get there...what's the hurry??

Have you ever been to the dentist and they are on schedule???

It is the glazed look in their eye as they gun their engines, accelerating ahead of the slower drivers, that always reminds me that I should really put my seat belt on. Either that or how they hug the back bumper of someone who is only going 34 in a 35mph speed zone...

These same drivers will often be stymied by other people, who apparently haven't the need to get to the grocery store 30 seconds before everyone else. These other drivers may actually not want to risk damaging their tires on the curb by squeezing around a F-350 that's waiting to go left at a red light. They just don't see the need for speed. They also know the light will turn green...What they may not realize is that I'm in the passenger seat of a car being driven by a maniac!!

When behind those kinda drivers I will often hear my shortcut loving speed freak driver say something like

Doesn't this idiot know he can go right on RED???" or

"I could drive a bus around that truck ! What IS wrong with this Ass----!!??

So I have begun using a little psychology on these drivers, these friends or family members, who can go Jekyll and Hyde behind the wheel over the slightest impediment to our swift journey to the dump or some other time critical destination.

Actually, first I tried humor. I drove with my oldest sister one day from my house to the mall and en route my sister pointed out at least 6 IDIOTS, although she may have had harsher descriptions for a couple of them.

I tried to make light of her rising blood pressure and the crimson color of her face by laughing and saying I had no idea how many IDIOTS were out there driving these days. But rather than laughing she launched into some stories of other idiots she had encountered earlier in the week....

Humor wasn't working.

My new tact is to make a game out of getting from point A to B. I like to challenge the driver to make the fewest turns possible. What this does is cut down on the frequent use of shortcuts and lowers the strain on your neck by eliminating a lot of the twist and turns that come with them. Still we do run into a lot of MORONS!!

Unfortunately they tire quickly of the "game" and revert back to their "need for speed" driving habits...

It's PLR now. It's a state of mind rather than a way of driving. I ask the driver to just follow the road and let whatever happens along the way happen. If someone stops to let another driver pull out...don't let it bother you...just go with the flow. All this angst about getting around a bottleneck of cars or just simply getting from point A to B in record time, isn't worth it..

We will get there and everything will be OK!!

Just drive on the Path Of Least Resistance (-:


PP said...

first recruited member of the PLR lifestyle. It will change your life. Go-with-the-floooww.

TOM said...

PP and Flow kinda go together!!

eastcoastlife said...

When I get my driver's license I'm gonna turn into one of the Hell-drivers!
*vroom vroom vroom*

jackie said...

i have slowly started to incorporate PLR into my driving routes and i must say that it has increased my quality of life.. now if only i could get dave to do the same even though he believes he already does.. his fear of the highway takes us down many twisting and turning side streets that leave me car sick and with neck pain!!

TOM said...

ECL I'm gonna stay out of your way then!!

Jackie, he's trying the PLR method around me....maybe you should do the highway driving

Robert said...

When that friend from Russia (who was here for Thanksgiving) first came here, he refused to make left turns. He'd make three right turns instead of one left! It does end up getting you to the same place, but it's definitely not PLR!
He's better now.

TOM said...

Robert, I've heard that expression "3 lefts make a right" Maybe it's an old Russian saying.

Anonymous said...

PLR is a good premise, however, it isn't always the best choice in all of life's challenges. Driving YES!
Behind the wheel it's definitely time to stay cool--not indulging in the famous "road rage" over every "idiot"
we see! unowho

Beth said...

PLR today for sure, as I work my way through Seattle traffic.

TOM said...

unowho, you are side seat road rage either!!

Beth, I hope you can bring the PLR state of mind to the West Coast!!

Beth said...

Tom, I'm going to try. It was almost 80 degrees here today, and I cannot tell you how many instances of rude, aggressive driving I witnessed.

TOM said...

Beth just take it one person at a time.80 degrees..I'm jealous

Kath Lockett said...

Bloody good point, Tom and one that I've subscribed to for ages now. Although now I'm going to call is PLR and see if I can't recruit a few more Aussie members for you.

TOM said...

Kath I have Beth on the west coast You in Australia...I'm here on trhe east coast we are going to spread this PLR around the world!!