Just Drive!


    Lately, driving home from work has been a nightmare. It seems like I cannot get home fast enough to my husband and my boys and all that stands in my way are a bunch of people who simply do not know how to drive. Now, I’m sure you have all heard about the traffic in New York City and how it is basically “dog eat dog.” That doesn’t even begin to describe drivers in the Big Apple or all of the moronic things that I have been seeing people doing while they were driving lately.  I invite you to see New York City traffic through my eyes…

    Let’s begin with the lady who obviously didn’t have enough time to put on her makeup at home one morning. At first, I wasn’t sure why she kept stopping short in front of me but I immediately realized the reason when I drove up next to her. She was applying a full face of makeup, including eye liner and mascara, in her rear-view mirror. The reason why she kept stopping was that she was attempting to control the steering wheel between her knees while looking up into the mirror instead of paying attention to the car in front of her. Honestly, who does that? I’m not going to lie and say that I have never applied lipgloss or lip balm in my car but at least I had the common sense to do it while my car was stopped at a stoplight or stuck in bumper to bumper traffic. I can’t even imagine driving in active traffic without my hands and not even looking at what was in front of me.

    Next, let’s talk about the wonderful drivers who never, ever signal that they are turning or going to merge into the lane in front of you. I’m not sure if they think that they can telepathically convey this information to other drivers but it is a complete hazard to the rest of us who are on the road with them.  I can’t even tell you how many times I have to slam on my brakes to accommodate someone who decided to jump in front of me without signaling or to stop and make a turn without any forewarning whatsoever.  Maybe I missed the memo stating that it is uncool to signal to other drivers or something.  This is of particular concern to me when I have my boys in the car with me.  Clearly, this is reckless and dangerous driving that I have been seeing more and more drivers here in the city engage in and law enforcement really needs to crack down on it.

    Another thing that has been totally getting on my nerves lately is the amount of cars in this city with those “Bumper Beavers” or “Bumper Badgers.”  I’m not even sure what they are really called but it seems like everyone has them and they look totally ridiculous.  For those of you who don’t know what these are, they are rubber mats that you somehow attach to the inside of your trunk and let hang out over your rear bumper to protect it from getting dings.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my car too and I don’t like getting any scratches on it but, let’s be serious.  First of all, my understanding is that these rubber mats were intended to flap over your bumper when you are parked so that those who park behind you won’t mark your bumper if they bump into you.  Before you drive out of your parking spot, you are supposed to open your trunk and put it away not drive around with a huge rubber mat flapping in the wind behind your car.  Plus, is it just me or is it called a bumper because it is expected that other cars just might “bump” into it?

    Another problem we have here on the roads of New York City are Gypsy Cabs and Yellow Cabs.  Yellow Cab drivers are probably the most reckless and inconsiderate drivers in the world.  Since their income is dependent on how many fares they can pick up daily, they will do just about anything to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible.  As a result of this, they will cut you off, stop short, disobey traffic devices, and generally just drive dangerously and rudely.  Gypsy Cab drivers will pretty much do the same thing along with trolling slowly in front of you scouting the sidewalks for potential fares to pick up.  They will often pull over and stop repeatedly without any warning at all.  They actually get a lot of business because, since they are illegal cabs, they charge passengers the equivalent of what it costs to ride public transportation so people who are running late to work or school will often flag them down.

    Lastly, we have the NYC Senior Citizen driver population.  I am all for the preservation of their rights and their maintaining their independence.  After all, my Grandpa is almost 80 and he drives every single day.  However, I’m sure that we can all agree that some elderly people clearly need to hand in their licenses and turn in their car keys.  This will probably not be well received by my readers who are in their golden years but you cannot drive at 20 miles per hour on the highway during rush hour and not expect other drivers to become irritated.  The bigger issue is that, some elderly drivers actually pose a threat to other drivers when they make careless driving mistakes due to poor or deteriorating vision or motor skills.  I don’t care whether you are young or old, if you can’t see and you can’t hear, you should not be driving.

    All of these factors have made my morning and afternoon commute less than enjoyable lately.  I really don’t expect any of these issues to be resolved anytime soon so, until then, I will raise the volume on my car radio, keep my seatbelt firmly fastened, and continue to make my insurance payments to Progressive.  Aside from that, the only thing that is going to help any driver in this city is patience and prayer.

© 2010, Tough Cookie Mommy. All rights reserved.


  1. Huh. I thought Oklahoma was unique. I haven’t ever seen this bumper thing, but it seems like it would scratch your car if you drove around with it banging on it. Seems to defeat the purpose.

  2. Ugg. I hate driving. I make Gadget Guy do it beacuse I can’t stand it. I do occasionally have to drive myself, but I hate it.

    Bumper beavers sounds dirty.

    • Haha, you have me laughing over here. Yes, the name is dirty and weird just like the product. I hate those things. I love driving but I get stressed out because there are so many stupid people on the road.

  3. I’m originally from NYC, so I know exactly what you mean! However, I think that in some ways, Boston might be worse. You just can’t generalize to any specific subgroup here: EVERYONE drives horribly. Now let me be quiet before they kick me out (but I speak the truth…) Haha Stay safe!

    • Chela, I am so glad that you are a native New Yorker and you know exactly what I am talking about. I can’t even imagine that anywhere else would have worse drivers than NYC. It is pretty bad when everyone just drives badly, you are right. Be careful what you say, they might find out you snuck in from NY. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I had considered you a brave woman for teaching middle schoolers day in and day out. Now Maria…you top it off with driving through NYC daily to do this deed. You are AMAZING! Traffic is my least fave thing….I would need a break as soon as I got to work if I had to do what you do. Nice pictures:)

  5. I think you’re damn brave to just be driving in NYC traffic!!! I can’t imagine doing it! I had a hard enough time in Newark!

  6. I’ve always been scared to drive to New York city! That’s the main reason I’ve never visited although it’s not that long of a trip. I hope one day I’ll get over my fear but I think you’ve helped reinforce it lol.

    Here’s something they just recently passed in my city. People are in a huge uproar but frankly I’m happy about it.


  7. Good Morning!! Being one of the blogs i read on an almost daily basis, I just HAD to get you with this award! 🙂 Make sure you head over and get it… http://legosinmypocket.blogspot.com/2010/11/our-first-one.html

  8. I grew up in NY and have lived in NYC, but never attempted to drive there. You are braver than I for sure!

  9. Today is friday and I was driving behind a sunday driver- I agree with you that some older folks should not have their license. I was a teacher too. Middle school is tough with all those raging hormes!

    • Hi, Karen. It’s always nice to meet a fellow teacher. I hate that, when I have somewhere I need to go and I get stuck behind a turtle driver. Yes, they definitely make it tough because of all those raging hormones!

  10. You mean those drivers don’t realize that they are not telepathically inclined? Lol! Same problems here, but imagine being a NY’er in ATL along with Chicago and the rest of the melting pot. It’s really bad because people really can’t drive here, and everyone’s bringing their rules of the road. If it snows, forget work, just blockade just yourself in your home.

    • Eleana, I can see how that would be a problem. You basically have a combination of all the knucklehead drivers from every state driving on the same roads. Be safe and keep your eyes open for them.

  11. I thought you were talking about Northern California. LOL, I really have low tolerance for idiots on the roads these days. Really, do some people even think at all?

  12. I’m stopping by from Mom Loop. You have an awesome blog!

    I can totally understand the N.Y.C. traffic thing. I grew up on Long Island and used to take the train in to the city for work. But I have driven many times to visit my grandma and friends and i know exactly what you are talking about. I’ll do some wishful thinking that it will get better before it gets worse. 🙂

    • Hi, Lori. I am so glad that you decided to stop by! Thank you for the kind words about my blog. It is definitely a labor of love and I am quite proud of it since I just recently migrated from the Blogger platfrom to self-hosted WordPress and I did most of the work myself. I’m not sure that even wishful thinking will help with the way some of these maniacs are driving. You are welcome back anytime.

  13. JDaniel4's Mom says

    Stopping from Mom Loop! People here don’t signal either. It really bothers me.

  14. Following you!
    Please follow back


  1. Maria says:

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  2. Chela says:

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  3. Maria says:

    New Post! RT @toughcookiemom: Just Drive! http://bit.ly/b3ttmY #blogchat #latinabloggers #soconnected #b2sb2b

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