Monday, June 14, 2010

Odd Bus Man

This morning on the drive to work, a bus moved into my lane without warning, cutting me off. No blinker, no nothing. Twice. The driver simply muscled his big ole vehicle over, clearly knowing that I wouldn't play chicken and risk a collision.

The first time I was in the process of turning out onto the main road when the bus suddenly decided to switch lanes, so I had to veer off onto the shoulder. I was definitely annoyed, enough so that I blurted out an obscenity inside the car, but the only one around to hear it was one of my dogs. I'm not given to rolling down the window to scream at another driver or give him/her the finger.

Even annoyed, I could have gotten over this if it had only happened once. Everybody makes mistakes, forgets to use the turn signal, let's their mine drift for a minute. Hell, I've done all three. So, quick annoyance then over, done gone.

Until it happened again, mere blocks later. The bus had returned to the left lane while I motored happily in the right. Then the bus driver spotted the upcoming road construction too late and instead of slowing down and waiting for an opening to pull into the right hand lane, he again just steered the big bus over, forcing me to put on the brakes so he wouldn't clip me.

This was a tour bus and the number of the company appeared on the back end of the bus in big numerals. I thought about it for a few seconds and then, when I was stopped at a light, I dialed the number. When a man answered, I asked, without yelling, if he could figure out which of their drivers was currently bringing a bus through the lower Keys. When he said he could, I suggested, "Please tell him he needs to learn to use the turn signal instead of cutting me off twice in five minutes."

The guy on the phone assured me he would and asked if there was something else he could do for me. When I told him 'no', he said, "Thank you for letting us know about the problem and thank you for not yelling at me."

That surprised me, but I managed to reply, "You weren't the one driving the bus, sir. Thanks for your help."

I disconnected the call and wondered how many people must call and yell at him if he was noticeably appreciative that I didn't.

Then I wondered if I'd overreacted and if I just should have let the whole thing slide. I finally decided that a few good things might result from this action. One, maybe the bus driver will pay more attention tomorrow and the next day and, perhaps, that will save an accident from happening in the long run.

Last but not least, some faceless guy who's used to taking crap from callers about mistakes made by other people got a little positive reinforcement for being helpful.

1 comment:

Terri Lorah said...

I think that was a great way to get your point across. More people should do what you did instead of freaking out. I like your blog. I was researching stuff for my Key West blog and came across yours. It is very good.