Some distractions while you’re driving

By John Toth

People will tell you to cut down on distractions while driving, which is really hard, since there are a lot of neat distractions inside and outside the car.

But there are several distractions that can get you in trouble easily, so I’m going to throw a few out there just to get started. I’m sure the dear reader has plenty to add to my list.

INSECTS: It has happened to most of us – a bug or flying insect launches an attack. Although the insect is behaving like it’s supposed to and is trying very hard to stay out of the way, we are counter-attacking with everything at our disposal, while at the same time trying to drive the car in a safe manner.

We all know this can be very dangerous. Your reaction should depend on the type of flying intruder you have encountered.

A wasp, for instance, requires drastic action. It must die, or it will bite you. A bee should be given greater consideration because I like honey. The “love bug” should be left alone.

I’m not talking about the ones that already wiped out on the windshield. Those have gone to “love bug” heaven. I mean those lost ones inside that are mistaking the windshield for open space.

Leave them alone. You have probably noticed that they come in pairs and are attached to each other.
They’re busy.

Don’t squash them. Let them finish.

How would you like it if someone did that to you?

PETS: Dogs are cool in the car. They hang their tongues out and look out the window. If they act up, you can always tie them to the roof Mitt Romney-style. But cats can be a little tricky.

Once I took my old cat to the vet for shots, and he freaked out as I pulled out of the driveway. This cat made the most irritating sound when he got scared. Cats can make some weird noises if they really want to.

The cat also sought out the lowest spot in the car, which was on the floorboard, right under the brake. It made for some really squishy stops. Just kidding.

Then the cat did something I should have expected. It urinated right there in the car, all over the place.
I drove back to the house to clean up the mess. That cat really had to go.

It’s hard to get cat urine smell out. Someone told me to use ammonia, so I bought a bottle and opened it. It smelled like cat pee.

I don’t see the purpose of trying to clean up cat pee smell with a product that smells like cat pee.
So, I had no choice, I sold the car … to this really naive person.

He loved the car, except for the smell.

Do you have cats, I asked. He said no.

It’s the new car smell. I took really good care of this car.

MAKE-UP: Putting on make-up while driving is a huge distraction, especially when a guy is doing it.

KIDS: Children don’t realize the consequences of their behavior in the car, so you have to be really strict with them. Just make sure there are no cameras around.

EATING, DRINKING: This is one of the most annoying distractions in the car, especially if that cheeseburger slips out of the bun and all over your pants and shirt. Drinking can be a hassle when that 40 oz drink breaks through the cheap cup holder you got at the dollar store and creates a small lake under your feet. That’s almost as bad as the cat letting loose down there.

CELL PHONES: The cell phone is the devil in the car. Many studies have concluded that they are as dangerous or more dangerous than drunken driving. So use it at your own risk, or best, don’t use it at all. But it’s hard.

The cell phone is more than a phone. It’s a friend, a guide, the window to the world, alarm clock, note pad. But when you’re driving, it’s the enemy. I would advise that you let the caller leave a message.
And, just to make things interesting, here are some greetings that should totally confuse the caller.

• The number you have reached, 226-0477, has been changed. The new number is 226-0477. (Yes, same number.) Please make a note of it.

• Hi, This is Dave. Please leave a message as soon as possible, and I’ll get back to you at the sound of the tone.

• Hi, you’ve reached 340-2359. We’re not peeb eht retfa egassem ruoy evael esaelp os ,won thgir emoh. gnillac rof uoy knahT (not understandable.)

• We’re sorry. You have reached an imaginary number. Please rotate your phone 90 degrees and try again.

OK. I stole them from the Internet, but they are funny, and I’ve been looking for an opportunity to work them in somewhere.

Next week, we’ll be discussing why dogs run when they see Mitt Romney.