Drag Racing for Idiots

I am never especially fond of people drag racing on city streets. It is dangerous and pointless.

Because I drive a "muscle car" a lot of people feel compelled to challenge me. My standard response is to poke off the line so slowly I could be passed by a pseudopod with a broken pod.

Most of the people I see jumping off the line are driving one of three types of rigs; a similar muscle car...Mustang, Charger, etc....or a rice burner...or an oversize pick-up with a big engine.

I may not like the drag racing...but at least I get it with those. The races I do not get are those like the one I observed today. Sadly, it was one I saw coming.

I was at the top of an on-ramp with 2 left turn lanes. Shortly after the turn as you proceed on Walker towards Allen it narrow to one lane.

So the car in front of me (and behind the car first in line) was about a 2002 rusted out powder blue Geo Metro. The car at the front of the right lane was about a 1990 rusted out VW station wagon of some sort. Maybe a Volvo.

Both of these fine automobiles have a top speed of about 35 mph and can easily go zero to 10 mph in something like 30 seconds. They are built for many things...being the butt of jokes, decent to good fuel mileage, not having good survivability in accidents...but speed and quickness are not high on their list of attributes.

Now, anyone with even the faintest modicum of common courtesy...or good sense...knows the proper protocol here is for car 1 in our lane (the closer, therefore "shorter" lane) to go, then the outside lane, then the inside lane and so forth, alternating in this manner.

But as soon as the light turned green the Metro gunned it. Leaping forward with the speed and power of a broken squirt gun, he manfully tried to muster enough speed on the uphill left turn sprint to impede the wagon from getting ahead of him.

Not to be outdone, the wagon whipped its crippled gerbil into a frenzy. "Go gerbil, go!" the driver could be heard exhorting his powerful engine.

Seeing the wagon was trying to stop him from stopping the wagon from taking its rightful place in the line of traffic, the geo pushed his second foot through the floorboard so he could run with both feet Fred Flintstone style.

It was a good thing he had forgotten his shoe because the first car in our lane was unaware of the drama unfolding behind him as they drag-raced each other in the life and death struggle to save almost an entire second of travel time. As a result he was proceeding in a safe, sane, non-drag racing off the line manner.

Either that or he was laughing so hard at the pathetic race unfolding behind him he was unable to apply sufficient force to his accelerator to speed away from the pack.

Anyhow, the lane narrowed to one. I waited with bated breath...and a foot near the brake...to see who would win this scintillating speed duel between the 25 mph drag racers.

I am happy/sad to report the Metro failed in his endeavor to out-jerk the other driver and was compelled to see the wagon merge into the space he should have had from the beginning.

This high-speed race covered almost a block in about 35 seconds. I think I could actually have traversed the same distance in the same time on my bike if I so desired.

And that is without drag racing.

So people, please, if you are going to put the hammer down...please do not do it in vehicles incapable of outrunning the guy with the walker from the Office. At least have a car capable of leaving some rubber on the pavement.

Because that was honestly about the most pointless vehicular duel I have ever seen.

And I kind of hope to see another one like it because I need a good laugh every now and again.


Riot Kitty said...

Drag racing with the gerbil engines! I love it!

Oddly enough, I didn't even think about people acting or reacting differently based on my car choice. That has been interesting.

G said...

That reminds me of a driving experience a very long time ago when one elderly guy was so intent on being the lead car driving down the road, that he would literally go straight in the left turn lane just so that he could cut me off and become the lead car.

Gives me the idea of a blog post for Friday. Thanks.