Share the Road

18911131421

Comments

  • KarlLB wrote: »
    I find your last sentence sad. Isn't a bit of greenery desirable?

    Sure. The houses are set back from the sidewalks by something like 30 feet, most of which is grass lawn. Then there's a concrete sidewalk, then there's another 4-5 feet of grass lawn between the sidewalk and the road. I'm mostly guessing at these numbers, but I suppose I could measure them when I get home.

    But the general point is that an additional 6 feet of grass between a sidewalk and the road doesn't add anything to the amenity of the area.

  • As I've said before, I see no reason why residential streets shouldn't have an automatic 20mph limit on them. Making them places where it is much safer to walk across the road to see your neighbour, or down the road to the local shop or playground, even safe for children to play. Places for people to live rather than to travel through.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    As I've said before, I see no reason why residential streets shouldn't have an automatic 20mph limit on them. Making them places where it is much safer to walk across the road to see your neighbour, or down the road to the local shop or playground, even safe for children to play. Places for people to live rather than to travel through.

    This exactly. Places where a pair of cyclists making a leisurely way without caring too much about road positioning is the expectation, not perceived as doing something wrong. It's all a bit "mustn't get in the way of Mr Toad!"
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    KarlLB wrote: »
    I find your last sentence sad. Isn't a bit of greenery desirable?

    But the general point is that an additional 6 feet of grass between a sidewalk and the road doesn't add anything to the amenity of the area.

    I'd argue it does if it forces drivers to slow down.
  • KarlLB wrote: »
    I'd argue it does if it forces drivers to slow down.

    Residential speed limits here are 25 mph, and are fairly well obeyed (except perhaps at 3am). If you want drivers to drive slower than that, what you want to accomplish is a steady, slower speed.

    By narrowing the road, you introduce randomly-located blockages (wherever there are a bunch of cars parked in the street) which has a dramatic effect on the capacity of the road, but a much smaller effect on the typical uncongested speeds (people will drive at 25 mph, go 2 blocks, and then stop. And repeat.)

    I think if you want to successfully reduce the speeds on this kind of road with technical measures (rather than trusting people to be law-abiding), you have to narrow the whole roadway and construct off-roadway parking (so there are never any blockages on the road, but the narrowness of the road encourages slowness). But then everything breaks when there's a big truck (tree trimming, someone moving house, snow plouging,...) and I think there'd be a general sentiment that it would cause more problems than it would solve.


  • Just to point out that the residential roads here are wide enough for two cars to easily travel in opposite directions - except that parking (usually on just one side) has narrowed that so that if meeting a car going the other way someone needs to pull in and let them pass - usually at a junction with a side road. So, travel at 25mph is impossible at any time, 15mph is a rarity. We have no difficulties with access by the bin trucks or delivery trucks - if the road is blocked by such a vehicle (or as has happened recently the council filling in pot holes, miracle of miracles!) then it's easily visible and you can wait a few minutes or go a different way round.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    I would tend to agree you need engineeree narrowing rather than random blockages; one manifestation of the very special privilege our society grants drivers is that if I took up half the pavement by chaining my bikes to the fence I'd be persued pretty quickly by the Parish Council, quite rightly, and yet it's apparently acceptable to do the same with a car to pavement, road, grass verge or any combination thereof. Any suggestion people shouldn't be allowed to leave their cars in other peoples' way is apparently anti-car.

  • As I've said before, I see no reason why residential streets shouldn't have an automatic 20mph limit on them. Making them places where it is much safer to walk across the road to see your neighbour, or down the road to the local shop or playground, even safe for children to play. Places for people to live rather than to travel through.

    It wouldn’t achieve that goal, because traffic speed is not the reason why people don’t do those things. All reducing the speed limit would do is make residential streets places that take longer to travel through than they do now.
  • As I said, residential areas are places where people live, not places for people to travel through. It will make little difference for people who live in these areas, it generally takes only a few minutes to drive from a home to a major road near their home (and back again). But, anything that reduces the attractiveness of residential areas as through routes for non-residents can only be a good thing.
  • We have no difficulties with access by the bin trucks or delivery trucks - if the road is blocked by such a vehicle (or as has happened recently the council filling in pot holes, miracle of miracles!) then it's easily visible and you can wait a few minutes or go a different way round.

    Apparently we have a different definition of "difficulty". If you have a bin truck in your street (which is already narrowed to one functional lane by parked cars) then you have no functional lanes. In other words, the road is no longer functioning as a road.

    I will grant that "wait a few minutes" is not an unfamiliar thing to anyone who drives in UK towns, particularly at rush hour, when all the roads are operating well in excess of their capacity, and so with that background, what difference does being held up for a few minutes by the bin truck, or the Johnsons getting their supermarket delivery, make?

    If, on the other hand, your expectation is to be able to get to your destination in a somewhat time-efficient manner (meaning, for example, that having to wait at traffic lights for more than one cycle of the lights is a thing that more or less never happens) then having to wait for every bin truck, tree trimmer, linesman or pantechnicon that you encounter is going to have a relatively more significant impact.

    And if you currently don't have to do any of those things, but are asked to make a change so you have to do all of those things, with the benefit being that it will make your neighbourhood more walkable, you'd have to evaluate whether the benefits were worth it.

    In my case, my neighbourhood already is pretty walkable. The fact that the sidewalks are separated from the road by the aforementioned 4-5 foot strip of grass makes it very comfortable to walk down the street, and as mentioned before, tends to obey the posted speed limits and stop at stop signs.

    Of course, about the only people that actually walk to anywhere are the crazy English ones*, unless you count the parents and kids walking to the neigbourhood playground. Lots of people running and/or walking dogs, though.

    So I don't think I'd gain anything, and I'm one of the people who does walk to places. My neighbours would be even less likely to think they'd have anything to gain.


    *I lie - we have new crazy Romanian neighbours. They walk, too.

  • But the general point is that an additional 6 feet of grass between a sidewalk and the road doesn't add anything to the amenity of the area.

    In my neighbourhood, all services are underground - gas, electricity, water, sewer, phone, cable, teh toobz for teh intrawebz. Where they are buried is what gets torn up when they need to be repaired or upgraded. So: do you want them under the road, under your house, under the sidewalk, or under a strip between the street and the sidewalk? In practice, they are distributed in all those areas so pedestrian & vehicle access can still be maintained during repairs. The roads and sidewalks you see above ground are just one layer of urban infrastructure.

  • Semi-annual "bike to work day" coming here. Been wondering if I can get a Plastic Jesus to put on my bike handlebars.

    ♫ His halo fits just right
    I can use it for a sight ♬
    ♪ Pedestrians will scatter near and far
    Plastic Jesus, Plastic Jesus, riding on my bike handlebars ♫
  • From the tangent on the Fucking Guns thread
    Define "low risk". When is there ever a time driving when the risks of taking your hands off the steering wheel are low? Maybe in a traffic jam which hasn't moved for so long you've turned the engine off. If you're driving at speed then it's obviously not safe to do so. If you're at traffic lights in town then you need to be aware of other traffic, cyclists coming up the inside, seeing where other drivers are planning to turn etc. But, we covered all that on the other thread.

    You tell me, Alan - when do you change gear? When do you scratch an itch? What's more distracting - removing one hand from the wheel for a couple of seconds, or trying not to pay attention to the itch?

    And I said hand, not "hands". There's a rather large difference.

    But apparently you have magic hands, because it is their presence on your steering wheel that allows you to notice cyclists filtering past you as you wait in traffic. What do you have - some kind of proximity radar with haptic feedback?

    Of course, I take hands off the wheel to change gear - it doesn't take long, then back on the wheel. And, changing gear is something other drivers will be anticipating since we all do it which makes a difference.

    Though having both hands on the wheel at all times, except when it's essential to be changing gear, is excellent practice as it maximizes control over the car, it isn't the whole story. The biggest issue is one of distraction. Adjusting the radio, having an itch, taking a drink are all distractions, and distractions kill. Some of them are unavoidable (no one I know of can prevent itches). Most are not - and, drinking is very avoidable. You need to change gear while driving, you may need to scratch an itch as that would be the lesser distraction, you can endure a song you don't like without changing the station, you don't need to talk to someone on the phone and you don't need to eat or drink while driving. Drinking, of course, has the added problem of putting a cup in front of your face, and tipping it upwards such that it blocks some of your vision (of your dashboard at least), just to add to the reasons not to drink.

    That's why it's in the Highway Code
    Rule 148
    Safe driving and riding needs concentration. Avoid distractions when driving or riding such as
    • loud music (this may mask other sounds)
    • trying to read maps
    • inserting a cassette or CD or tuning a radio
    • arguing with your passengers or other road users
    • eating and drinking
    • smoking
  • Of course, I take hands off the wheel to change gear - it doesn't take long, then back on the wheel. And, changing gear is something other drivers will be anticipating since we all do it which makes a difference.

    I agree with a lot of what you have written, but this is nonsense. Other drivers expect you to change gear, but most of them will not anticipate when you are going to change gear, and won't do anything about it anyway. But it's even more nonsense, because the driver that is likely to have any kind of chance anticipating when you've got one hand on your gearstick is the one behind you, and he's unlikely to be the reason that you suddenly need the extra control of your steering that two hands rather than one gives you. And even more nonsense indeed, because anyone with the degree of awareness to be thinking about whether or not you might currently be holding your gearstick is going to also have enough awareness to not make you need extra control over your car in the first place.
    Though having both hands on the wheel at all times, except when it's essential to be changing gear, is excellent practice as it maximizes control over the car, it isn't the whole story. The biggest issue is one of distraction. Adjusting the radio, having an itch, taking a drink are all distractions, and distractions kill.

    This bit I completely agree with. Distractions are the chief problem. Which is why one of the reasons I often remove a hand from the steering wheel is to hit the power button on the stereo to turn the music off when I'm coming up to a complicated bit (generally speaking, trying to find somewhere in a busy city I don't know well).

    But the thing that is missing from this discussion is a sense of perspective. I agree - eating and drinking is distracting. I also use written directions to tell me where to go when I'm driving, and those are distracting, too. (No, I don't try and read a map while I'm driving - they have too much detail and so are too complicated.) Adverts for nearby attractions at the side of the road are distracting. Unusual vehicles are distracting. Being thirsty is distracting. Needing the toilet is distracting. Being hot, or being cold, is distracting.

    The question for me is whether I can deal with the distraction without, in my estimation, increasing the risk of an accident by a measurable amount. Which means that most of the time, I will turn the music on and off freely, and adjust the heating or cooling equally freely. I will have written directions, but I will carefully plan how I'm going to flick my glance to them. It will often take several flicked glances to locate the next turning on the paper, and a couple more to actually read the information. (Although these days I have a GPS, so don't need to use written directions much. I glance at the scrolling map now, and find that the minimal distraction caused by glancing at the map is worth the increased assurance of knowing exactly where I need to turn.)

    Eating and drinking is a lot less distracting than trying to follow directions. You're right - lifting a cup of bottle to your lips for a second or two does block your view of much of the instrument panel - but how often are you actually looking at your instrument panel? I spend most of my time looking at the road. So having a drink at a carefully-planned time in a low-risk bit of road isn't blocking anything important from my sightlines. (Eating, of course, doesn't have this vision-blocking issue.)

    You asked before what low-risk was. I think you know the answer to this. You know what bits of road are higher-risk: ones with lots of pedestrians, or children playing; ones with poor visibility; ones with lots of traffic congestion and erratically-moving vehicles. The low-risk bits are the other ones. Wide, straight roads without much traffic, with long sightlines. If you can see for a mile in all directions, it really does reduce the number of surprises that might happen.


  • mousethiefmousethief Shipmate
    Re. drinks blocking your view -- do they not have straws in the UK?
  • RooKRooK Admin Emeritus
    Eating or drinking while driving is stupid. Period. The obvious fact that many people are willing to take the risk to do so only points to the general state of stupidity among the driving public. The truth is that humans are consistently terrible at estimating risk or evaluating their own rationale for what they want to do.

    Quick quiz: How long are the dashed lines separating the lanes on the road (in the US/Canada)?
    Most people think they're about 2 feet long.
    They're 10 feet long (3 meters in Canada), and 30 feet apart (9 meters).
    That drastic disparity in visual comprehension isn't just an optical illusion. It's representative of the massive inability of humans to comprehend the speeds they're actually traveling at.

    The comparison to shifting gears is a category error. Shifting gears is still paying attention to the task of operating the vehicle, the timing of which is entirely coordinated with respect to the vehicle's trajectory and momentum. Eating or drinking is a fully differentiated, and the best you can do is try to minimize the distraction. Many people don't bother, and blithely cruise along with a (straw-less) cup of coffee in their hand.
  • TwilightTwilight Shipmate
    I agree with everything on Rule 148 except the smoking part. Car ash trays are usually placed so that it's not necessary to take one's eyes off the road to use them and the hand can be on the wheel while still holding it. Nicotine has been proven to increase attention and focus on tedious, repetitive tasks. I think that added bit of stimulation and alertness is more than enough trade off to the tiny bit of attention needed to flick the ash. I don't smoke but I'm glad the long haul truckers do.
  • RuthRuth Admin Emeritus
    edited May 2018
    Most cars sold in the US have automatic transmissions, so there aren't a lot of people removing their hands from the wheel to shift. Frees them up to text.
    I can appreciate the arguments about long journeys, but a) how many people using a drive-thru are actually driving more than a few miles?
    Where I live, lots. A lot of people have long commutes here in SoCal. Eating while driving is a bad idea, but people do it anyway -- as RooK says, most people don't have good risk assessment skills. They feel pressed for time, which is why they're not sitting at home and eating before they start their commutes or trips and why they're not stopping for the 20-30 minutes it takes to pull off the freeway and eat at a fast food joint. When I drove over an hour to get to work, I ate breakfast in the car regularly. It meant an extra half-hour of sleep.
    on a long journey it's strongly advised that you take a break every 2.5-3h
    I don't know anyone who does this, and it certainly wasn't part of driver's training when I was a teen. When you're driving vast distances, you stop when you have to - you need gas, you need to pee, you feel tired. When my parents lived a 4-hour drive away (5 hours on holiday weekends), I wasn't going to make the journey any longer by stopping along the way; I'd just be that much more tired for the last hour of the drive.
  • Ruth wrote: »
    on a long journey it's strongly advised that you take a break every 2.5-3h
    I don't know anyone who does this, and it certainly wasn't part of driver's training when I was a teen. When you're driving vast distances, you stop when you have to - you need gas, you need to pee, you feel tired. When my parents lived a 4-hour drive away (5 hours on holiday weekends), I wasn't going to make the journey any longer by stopping along the way; I'd just be that much more tired for the last hour of the drive.
    Well, it's part of UK driver training and the Highway Code (my emphasis)
    Rule 91
    Driving when you are tired greatly increases your risk of collision. To minimise this risk
    • make sure you are fit to drive. Do not begin a journey if you are tired. Get a good night’s sleep before embarking on a long journey
    • avoid undertaking long journeys between midnight and 6 am, when natural alertness is at a minimum
    • plan your journey to take sufficient breaks. A minimum break of at least 15 minutes after every two hours of driving is recommended
    • if you feel at all sleepy, stop in a safe place. Do not stop on the hard shoulder of a motorway
    • the most effective ways to counter sleepiness are to drink, for example, two cups of caffeinated coffee and to take a short nap (at least 15 minutes)
    Certainly when I go to my mums, that's 6h (in decent traffic), I'll take two stops. One for lunch, one for a coffee - both with toilet breaks, stretching legs, and just chill for a bit. This is a) a lot safer driving, and b) means I'm not as exhausted when I get there since I've not just spent 6h concentrating on driving without a break.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    Moving from the effing guns thread, most of my driving is on freeways and country roads. I drive a manual car. I can eat a footlong subway and drink a coffee while driving. I can eat a small hamburger while driving. Eating while driving is a cynch. You just have to prepare the packaging while stationary and not worry about getting food all over yourself and your car.

    I have a memory of a John Belushi character - I think a lawyer, but not sure - getting out of his junked car and having fast food containers spill out onto the street. This was my cherished model of car care before I was married. I even had mushrooms growing in the carpet on the passenger side.

    I miss those carefree days sometimes...
  • Ruth wrote: »
    on a long journey it's strongly advised that you take a break every 2.5-3h
    I don't know anyone who does this, and it certainly wasn't part of driver's training when I was a teen. When you're driving vast distances, you stop when you have to - you need gas, you need to pee, you feel tired. When my parents lived a 4-hour drive away (5 hours on holiday weekends), I wasn't going to make the journey any longer by stopping along the way; I'd just be that much more tired for the last hour of the drive.
    Well, it's part of UK driver training and the Highway Code (my emphasis)
    Rule 91
    Driving when you are tired greatly increases your risk of collision. To minimise this risk
    • make sure you are fit to drive. Do not begin a journey if you are tired. Get a good night’s sleep before embarking on a long journey
    • avoid undertaking long journeys between midnight and 6 am, when natural alertness is at a minimum
    • plan your journey to take sufficient breaks. A minimum break of at least 15 minutes after every two hours of driving is recommended
    • if you feel at all sleepy, stop in a safe place. Do not stop on the hard shoulder of a motorway
    • the most effective ways to counter sleepiness are to drink, for example, two cups of caffeinated coffee and to take a short nap (at least 15 minutes)
    Certainly when I go to my mums, that's 6h (in decent traffic), I'll take two stops. One for lunch, one for a coffee - both with toilet breaks, stretching legs, and just chill for a bit. This is a) a lot safer driving, and b) means I'm not as exhausted when I get there since I've not just spent 6h concentrating on driving without a break.
    It all depends where you live doesn't it? 4 hours is routine here. I do that in one go, to go to our cabin for the weekend after work on a Friday, returning on Sunday evening. We drive 16 hours (1000 miles) a couple of times per year, usually in winter. Cruise control, formerly CDs, now podcasts, and CBC Radio. Start at 4 a.m. and just go, two of us switching off every 3 or 4 hours. Stops are usually less than 5 mins, gas up, pee, go. Do people sleep while another is driving there?

    It is commonplace though that when not near cities, which can be few and far between, that there aren't many other cars around. The largest town I go through to our cabin is 5,000 people, all others are 1000 or less. Though there are lots of deer and occasional moose - don't be hitting a moose, that will kill you. At this time of year, farm machinery on the highway. Seeding and harvest is day and night when conditions are good which is this week, finally frost free nights. Most of the highways are one lane each way except near cities.

  • It all depends where you live doesn't it? 4 hours is routine here. I do that in one go, to go to our cabin for the weekend after work on a Friday, returning on Sunday evening. We drive 16 hours (1000 miles) a couple of times per year, usually in winter.

    I don't drive as far as NP, but I used to do a 550 mile drive on a regular basis. Roads here are pretty boring: get on the highway, set cruise control to "the speed limit", and the most exciting thing to happen in the next couple of hours is probably the gentle left bend at mile 70.

    Lots of books on CD (yes, I changed CDs while I was driving - I wasn't going to pull over every 50 minutes) with water and chocolate in grabbing range. I'd stop to refuel twice, one of which would also be a brief lunch, the other would be a quick pee.

    I'd leave at a humane time in the morning (after the rush hour had cleared), and be in the bar at my destination for dinner. About 10 hours for the lot.

  • two of us switching off every 3 or 4 hours. Stops are usually less than 5 mins, gas up, pee, go. Do people sleep while another is driving there?
    Well, clearly a second driver changes things a bit. Even if the non-driver doesn't sleep, simply not having to concentrate on the act of driving will be a relaxing break, plus the benefit of having someone else there who can take on tasks such as changing the CD or adjusting the climate control system. Fundamentally though, you're still talking about the driver taking a break - even if longer than 2h between breaks, which may be OK as you're talking about a much longer break as well. Without a second driver though that isn't an option.

  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    Pommies are notoriously pissweak about driving. It is known, dothraki style.
  • We just don't fancy getting mangled in a lot of metal. And, we want to get where we're going without delay, and nothing causes delay quite like crashing your car (delays others as well, and we don't like to inconvenience others ... almost as bad as cutting into a queue).
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    Pommies are notoriously pissweak about driving. It is known, dothraki style.


    Yeah, and the Ozzie approach is killing you: https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/08/report-sleepy-drivers-are-just-as-dangerous-as-drunk-drivers/amp
  • I'm mildly surprised at the drive-thru discussion - I'd assumed that most people used them as an easier and more convenient takeaway service prior to eating the food at home, like I do.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    I'm mildly surprised at the drive-thru discussion - I'd assumed that most people used them as an easier and more convenient takeaway service prior to eating the food at home, like I do.

    I don't know about easier; I struggle to hear the assistant through those things and feel rushed. I like the new touchscreen ordering thing they've got at McDonalds which takes the "hurry up just order already" feeling out of the experience.
  • My local chippy doesn't have a drive thru', so that's not an option for takeaway. I use the drive thru' at McD or KFC to get a quick lunch for the kids to eat in the car (then go home, where I fix myself some proper food for lunch).
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    KarlLB wrote: »
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    Pommies are notoriously pissweak about driving. It is known, dothraki style.


    Yeah, and the Ozzie approach is killing you: https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/08/report-sleepy-drivers-are-just-as-dangerous-as-drunk-drivers/amp

    I think that bloke is John Travolta's love child.

    We do ads to change behavior for everything. It started with fear mongering about AIDS in the 1980's and went from there. It works, but. As they say in the western suburbs.

    Here's an instructional video about eating in your car.
  • I'm mildly surprised at the drive-thru discussion - I'd assumed that most people used them as an easier and more convenient takeaway service prior to eating the food at home, like I do.

    On the rare occasions when I have resorted to the "M" company's offerings in lieu of actual food, I have parked the car, gone inside, ordered, collected my food, returned to the car, and seen some of the same cars still waiting in the queue for the drive-thru.
  • two of us switching off every 3 or 4 hours. Stops are usually less than 5 mins, gas up, pee, go. Do people sleep while another is driving there?
    Well, clearly a second driver changes things a bit. Even if the non-driver doesn't sleep, simply not having to concentrate on the act of driving will be a relaxing break, plus the benefit of having someone else there who can take on tasks such as changing the CD or adjusting the climate control system. Fundamentally though, you're still talking about the driver taking a break - even if longer than 2h between breaks, which may be OK as you're talking about a much longer break as well. Without a second driver though that isn't an option.

    It's been some years, but there used to be published at the local univ a list of people to contact who were going east or west at holiday times. It was common to find 2 or 3 and take them along as relief drivers and gas money sharers.

    I also pick up hitch hikers, depending on where and when it is. There are alleged risks with this and I think horror movies about it, but pleasant conversation with strangers is all I've ever experienced. I don't stop for everyone, but more commonly on sparsely travelled highways. In winter or car stalled at roadside, almost always stop unless others have already.
  • RooKRooK Admin Emeritus
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    Eating while driving is a cynch.

    Oh, it's easy to do. It's just stupid to do. The consequences are not worth the paltry value of saving some time.

    Not to cross the streams too badly, but wielding something as dangerous as a motor vehicle in public has certain due responsibility. It's like pointing a loaded gun at a crowd with your finger on the trigger and deciding that's a good time to practice your one-handed drumming with your "free hand". If your immediate thought is, "well, I'd just stop pointing the gun at the crowd - obviously", that analogy is pulling the fuck over to eat your snack.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    I find that doing something with my mouth while driving helps me to concentrate.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    I find that doing something with my mouth while driving helps me to concentrate.

    Back in the day lots of people used to claim they drove better after a few pints.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    I find that doing something with my mouth while driving helps me to concentrate.

    What you find is one thing. Have you asked the highway patrol about this? A court may find differently.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    KarlLB wrote: »
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    I find that doing something with my mouth while driving helps me to concentrate.

    Back in the day lots of people used to claim they drove better after a few pints.

    I'm excellent at pool between the second and third pint, so that makes sense to me.

  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    KarlLB wrote: »
    Simon Toad wrote: »
    I find that doing something with my mouth while driving helps me to concentrate.

    Back in the day lots of people used to claim they drove better after a few pints.

    I'm excellent at pool between the second and third pint, so that makes sense to me.

    Yes, but the point is they were wrong.
  • I think there's some quiet trolling going on here... :smile:

    Regarding things which pull one's attention from the road - a building site on my way to work acquired an enormous advert hoarding, unusually in 'portrait' rather than 'landscape'. One morning I found myself involuntarily looking hard left at it while driving; a bra advert meant that a breast (only one as I recall; the hoarding was so big that I would have had to observe from a larger distance to see two at once) had entered my field of vision and something in my cerebellum was reacting to it.

    I was going to make a joke about this being more dangerous than my normal practice of balancing porn mags and a road atlas between my knees and the steering wheel, but I don't think I'll bother.
  • I was going to make a joke about this being more dangerous than my normal practice of balancing porn mags and a road atlas between my knees and the steering wheel, but I don't think I'll bother.

    Thanks for sharing. And further thanks for not mentioning the stick shift, the revving of the engine and acceleration.
  • SpikeSpike Admin
    Twilight wrote: »
    Nicotine has been proven to increase attention and focus on tedious, repetitive tasks. I think that added bit of stimulation and alertness is more than enough trade off to the tiny bit of attention needed to flick the ash. I don't smoke but I'm glad the long haul truckers do.

    That is complete bollocks. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance. As it leaves the body smokers get withdrawal symptoms, which is why they get agitated an hour or so after their last cigarette and find it hard to concentrate. This is why nicotine gives the illusion that it adds stimulation & alertness and also acts as a stress reliever. The only reason the lack of alertness and the stress are there in the first place is because a smoker is going through withdrawal.

    As for the positioning of ashtrays, I’ve not seen an ashtray in a car for years. Do they still do them?
  • My car has a small tray that could be used as an ash tray, it slides out from the base of the central control console in front of the gear stick (immediately above the slide out cup holder). I can't imagine it being convenient for the driver as it means taking the cigarette down below knees to tap out the ash (and as the tray doesn't come out completely I've no idea how to empty it). Judging by observation of other drivers around here, tapping out ash and disposal of the butts involves opening the window. I can't see how smoking can't be another driver distraction - faffing about lighting the thing, smoke obscuring vision, doing something to tap it out and stub it out when finished, and times with a hand off the wheel. I know it's still legal, if you don't have children in the car, but I guess it's only a matter of time before that distraction, causing hazard to other drivers, gets ruled illegal.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    It's the buggers littering the road with their fag ends who annoy me.
  • Leorning CnihtLeorning Cniht Shipmate
    edited May 2018
    KarlLB wrote: »
    It's the buggers littering the road with their fag ends who annoy me.

    Agreed. I can't stand the smell of smoke, but in these enlightened times, nobody smokes at work or in restaurants and bars, and I can deal with occasional people smoking outdoors. But what on earth makes smokers think they have the right to drop litter everywhere? They don't do it with anything else - you don't see smokers dumping crisp packets and coke cans at a greater rate than non-smokers - but fag-ends are somehow magically not litter or something.

    My car doesn't have ashtrays, nor does it have a cigarette lighter (although of course it has a 12V socket, and I suppose I could purchase a lighter for it.) It's got lots of cup holders, though.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Sometimes I wish I did heroine so I could throw a used syringe in when they throw a fagend out. My used drug paraphernalia for theirs.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    I went bushwalking with a bloke in the 1990's who would smoke a fair bit, but put his buts in a bag and carry them out with him.
  • There is no excuse for ever, intentionally, leaving any form of litter behind wherever and whatever you're doing. Whether that's a fag but or crisp packet. If you don't have the means with you to carry your trash home (or, at least as far as a proper bin) then you shouldn't be generating that trash.
  • Round here it's bagged dog shit hanging in the trees. Maybe it's a gang thing, like trainers hanging from telephone wires.
  • There is no excuse for ever, intentionally, leaving any form of litter behind wherever and whatever you're doing. Whether that's a fag but or crisp packet. If you don't have the means with you to carry your trash home (or, at least as far as a proper bin) then you shouldn't be generating that trash.

    We agree, of course, but I'm particularly confused by the magic "not litter" status that many smokers seem to ascribe to cigarette butts. I've seen any number of people carefully pack up their old newspaper, empty banana peel, coke can, and crisp packet, and then grind their cigarette out on the nearest wall and leave the butt lying there.

    I don't understand that at all.
  • I went for a walk today, and as is my habit picked up some litter on the way down the hill, ending up with half dozen drink cans, two plastic bottles, about a dozen assorted crisp or sweet wrappers and a similar number of plastic caps from bottles. I didn't pick up the fag ends, but there were plenty of them as well - a bit too much work on a hot day to scrabble around in the dirt. Which is a double incomprehensibility - not only the litter, but when I was often stopping because it felt like my lungs were still half a mile back down the path how you can enjoy a good walk with even less chance of breathing.
Sign In or Register to comment.