I don’t think anybody complains about Utah drivers more than Utah drivers themselves. Which leads me to wonder… what the heck is so bad about Utah drivers anyway?
Somebody (yes, it was you Neal) once told me that being a Utah driver was more a state of mind rather than the state (as in State of the Union) you drive in. That being the case, what exactly is a Utah driver?
Some might say that a Utah driver is just a bad driver. If that’s the case, how did Utah get the bad rap? Why not “New Jersey driver” or “Idaho farmer driver”?
On my way in to work today, the roads were a bit slick thanks to the rain. Coming down 1600 North, I witnessed a near rear ending. I looked over at my wife and said, “That’s why I don’t tailgate.” Well, I don’t tailgate (most of the time at any rate). If you’re doing 20 mph in a 35 zone, then yeah, I’m going to tailgate you. But if the roads are wet, then I won’t tailgate even under those harrowingly extreme circumstances.
That got me thinking. Does that make him a “California driver” because he was tailgating? If that’s the case, then there were about 10 California drivers because nearly the whole column was tailgating.
But since tailgating is a form of bad driving, does that actually make them Utah drivers because they are practicing bad technique, even though Californians are notorious for tailgating?
According to my good friend Randy, Alabama drivers are horrible drivers. Why can’t bad drivers be Alabama drivers?
Though in my experience, I’d say the number of bad drivers is a pretty small percentage. Sure there are lots of drivers with bad habits (I tend to be a stickler for rules, and so I notice these bad habits more than most people do), but honestly, how many drivers do you encounter each day that do something that makes you mumble under your breath, “Those stupid Utah drivers!”
Maybe 1 in 100? Think about how many other drivers you encounter each day. It could be several hundred. Statiscally, no matter where you are in the nation, you’re bound to encounter a bad driver in a day’s work. And if you’re on the road everyday, well you’re probably going to run into 7 bad drivers a week then aren’t you?
Maybe we Utahns consider our fellow Utahns to be bad drivers simply because whenever we encounter a bad driver, it just so happens to be in Utah. Go figure huh? I mean, being that this is where we live, work, and play, what are the odds of running into a bad driver that is also from Utah? Astronomical I’m sure.
But the next time we complain about “Utah drivers” and how horrible they are, maybe we should look in the mirror and remind ourselves that we need to make a greater effort to be a better driver ourselves. After all, we are part of what makes a “Utah driver”. And if we’re not part of the solution… well, you know.