Dear self-absorbed drivers: Get out of the way

“Are you kidding me?  Again with this nonsense!”  This was my very thought this morning as I attempted to enter the parking garage at the east entrance nearest DeSantis. Merely getting into the garage is the least of my concerns on any given day.  However, this particular morning reminded me of what appears to be an ever–growing number of occasions when, upon arrival at the parking garage, there is a long queue of cars waiting to enter the facility.

Near as I can discern (given that I actually got out of my car today to see exactly what the problem was), the delays are being caused by utterly self–absorbed, self–indulgent, selfish, near–sighted individuals who have absolutely no concept whatsoever of the timeless and invaluable ideal of “planning ahead.”

Have you ever heard the expression, “poor planning on your part does not necessarily constitute an emergency on mine?”  Hmmm?  Regrettably though, entering the NSU parking garage is one circumstance in life which actually does emerge as one where poor planning on your part can — and does — indeed constitute an emergency on mine.

It’s just ridiculous.  You leave your house.  You drive your car.  You get on the cell phone and spend the entire trip to NSU talking with friends or family about how much fun you had last night at Geronimo’s, how lousy you feel today because you’re hung over, or what you plan to do for the weekend.  Yet, it never occurs to you to have your NSU ID card ready when you get to the garage.  Some of you don’t even bother to guarantee that you even have your ID with you before you leave home, forcing you now to call Public Safety over the intercom and beg for permission to enter the garage.

Then, you arrive at the turnstile inside the garage with several students and faculty behind you in their cars, who have as much determination to arrive in class on time as anyone might.  And then — there’s you.  You — yeah, you know who you are.  You — the one who waits until you’re pulling right up to the ID identifier before you even bother putting down the phone in order to rummage through your purse, dig out your wallet, or fumble through the pile of garbage on the passenger seat next to you in order to find your ID so that you can scan it and enter the garage and get the hell out of everyone else’s way — all the while, everyone behind you, who has arrived well-prepared to scan their IDs is now forced to wait for you to get your act together.  We don’t like you very much. Your behavior offends us.  Are you aware of this?  Do you even care?

And then, there’s the turnstile culprit’s second cousin who gets on the phone while pulling out of their parking space, taking their sweet time, while traffic starts building up behind them in the lanes trying to leave the garage. Oy vey, man.  Are you kidding me?

Yesterday, I encountered one of these people in the garage, blocking traffic, both coming and going, while she slowly pulled out of her parking space while talking on the phone.  When she finally got her act together and approached my car as I entered the garage, I was able to see that this driver was attempting to navigate her car while trying to balance a phone between her shoulder and ear.  Her window was open — as was mine — so when I passed, I shouted, “Hey! Put down the damn phone and drive the car!”

I felt pretty good about it too.  How often do we actually get the chance to speak our minds to one of these self–absorbed persons who care nothing for anything occurring beyond their own noses? Upon hearing my shout, she looked at me incredulously as if she had every right to expect me to wait on her highness to operate her life however she wants while all of her “subjects” should just bow in deference as she passes by.

Let me enlighten, with clarity, all self–indulgent drivers out there.  You are not the only drivers on the road. We don’t care if you drive your car.  We just want you to be less self–absorbed while you do it. Put down the phone and drive the car.  Is it really so hard to consider that you actually aren’t the only human being on earth who has something important to which to attend?

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