I’ve been a Jersey Girl all my life. I love this state. We have it all, beaches, mountains, art galleries, music venues … and paleo restaurants (NYC doesn’t even have restaurants that cater specifically to paleo!) All my life, I never wanted to leave, until maybe the past year. Because it seems like whenever I get out of the state, I’m a lot happier.
There are two pathetic stereotypes in New Jersey that I have to admit are sadly true — and they both go hand-in-hand with each other: bad driving and the sense of entitlement.
What happened to me yesterday got me so angry, my original post was horrible, so I made it private and decided to re-write this morning now that I’m a lot calmer.
It was a gorgeous day yesterday, but a little windy. A garbage can rolled out into the middle of the street as I was driving. The car in front of me took a chance and swerved around the garbage can to avoid it — but he broke the law by going into the wrong lane, where traffic was going the other way.
I don’t do that.
Now, we were promised flying cars in the 21st Century, but our geniuses haven’t gotten that far yet. So flying my car over the garbage can was not an option.
Nor was I going to ruin my car by “pushing” the garbage can as I drove. Anyone with half a brain would know that would ruin my car. (And my car, a 2013 model is still fairly new and I’m not buying another new one until 2016).
So, what other intelligent option did I have other than putting my emergency lights on, getting out of the car, picking up the trash can and throwing on to the lawn. That took a mere two seconds.
However, this entitled imbecile couldn’t wait. He got into the wrong lane, rolled down his window, screaming obscenities at me, with his face scrunched up like a smashed pumpkin and red as a beet. AND his car almost hit me! A petite woman like myself, doing the right thing, simply moving a huge (and heavy!) garbage can out of my way (and out of the way of other vehicles. There were no cops around and someone had to do it!)
Oh, how I cringed at the hate and rage. What an asshole! Instead of taking the opportunity to be a gentleman, he showed his true colors and acted like a real “class act.” [Sarcasm intended].
My mother always said that when a guy acts like a real douche-bag you should question his manhood. I know if she was there with me, she’d scream something at him like, “Go get laid!” Instead I was like a deer in headlights. Simply dumbfounded. I couldn’t believe someone could be that cruel to another human being.
This guy had a beautiful car, and was out driving on a gorgeous day (NOT DURING RUSH HOUR EITHER! It was 11 a.m.) And because I wasn’t moving fast enough, he got his knickers in a twist. When I shared this story with my friend Shaolin, a New Yorker, she said “It sounds like he was nuts.” Yeah, that made sense. He definitely was a nut job. But then again, from what I’m experiencing, so is 90 percent of the state where everyone’s entitled, and everyone’s in a rush to go NOWHERE. I mean, honestly, how “important” could that asshole be if he was in that much of a hurry?
Mind you, I’m a stickler for time myself. I think it’s rude and passive-aggressive to make others wait for you, so I don’t do that. So the solution is — leave earlier, giving yourself ENOUGH time so you don’t endanger the lives of others by driving like a fool.
In other states I’ve seen the coolest things, like cars slowing down for a turtle to cross the road! Why can’t we do things like that? Well, I do. I always slow down for pedestrians, deer crossings and geese crossing. When the rest of New Jersey learns from me (and the rare amount of other drivers that do that too), perhaps New Jersey will be a more respectable place.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m a very fast person myself and I get things done faster than the speed of light. Everyone thinks I work “so much” when it’s really just me being very well-organized and the queen of multi-tasking. I make a full time salary — part-time! The difference is, it’s all at my own pace. I don’t rush others. I don’t operate with a sense of entitlement. When I’m stuck in traffic, I actually embrace it, being happy in my own company, in my own thoughts, having a little down time in life. It’s good for you.
Yesterday I tried to report that asshole driver by calling News 12. I was told that it was a good story for “Kane in Your Corner.” I’ve yet to hear from Kane in Your Corner, so I am delivering the message myself —
NEW JERSEY — STOP BEING ASSHOLES! This is why other states hate us so much. Start driving safely and treat other human beings with respect. I’m sick of being embarrassed living here, but I can’t blame others for stereotyping us. We really are a bunch of angry, clueless jerks. What happened yesterday was total proof of that!