So I'm driving home today, and something occurs to me. As I am wont to do, I explore this thought for the hour or so I am in the car. The thought process that led to this revelation went something like this:
"Get off my ass, dickhead."
and then, two seconds later:
"Jesus, buddy. Pick up the pace, will ya? People have places to be for god’s sake."
It was then that this particular vehicular theory occurred to me. It seems that all this time, I have had a “zone” around my car. We'll call this the JV zone, or JVZ for short.
The JVZ extends a certain distance to the front of my car, to both sides, and also to the rear. The JVZ expands and contracts to a great extent based upon many different criteria -- including speed, weather conditions, traffic level, my mood, and the relative stupidity and/or assholishness of surrounding drivers.
So assume that on the way home today I was doing 75-80 mph. Yes, I know this is over the speed limit, but unless I want to be brutally corn-holed by an 18 wheeler, this is the speed at which I am forced to travel if I want to be in either of the outer two lanes. I could stay in the far right lane, but then I have to contend with 3-wheeled solar vehicles, funky-lookin' slow ass hybrids, dump trucks, rustbucket '71 Winnebagos with 17 bikes strapped to the back, and all those pesky exits and the various people wanting to get to them.
So anyway, assuming that I approach this insane speed on a dry, smooth highway, the JVZ extends roughly 2 car lengths to the front and back of my car. I realize that this is not even close to the amount of space necessary to allow me to avoid a collision if some catastrophic event occurs -- for example, if the driver in front of me sees an accident on the other side of the highway, gets a cell phone call or hates that shitty Celine Dion song, but that's what I work with, because nobody will respect my wishes for a larger JVZ.
Also assuming that I'm not the only one with a Zone, we run into a very serious problem. I call this problem Zone Overlap.
Consider this: You’re driving along, respecting your zone when suddenly, you nearly drive up the ass of some numbnut going 55 in the fast lane. You immediately encroach on his zone. You can’t help it, because he is abusing his driving privileges, and his zone. BUT -- you are still thinking of it as your zone, and this tortoise-driving mofo is in your way. He is compressing your zone, pushing it back into your face. You are not thinking of it as his zone – it is yours.
Now think about this. Out of necessity, you slow down. You shout obscenities, you wave fingers, you yell at this clueless nutsack through multiple layers of safety glass and an 80 mph air gap. What you don’t immediately realize is that simultaneously, something else happens, and that something else is this:
The guy behind you begins compacting your rear zone directly into your anus.
This is because he is thinking of it as his zone, and you are inconsiderately pushing it into back into his face. You can see the problems this causes. Anger, harsh words, more finger gestures. And, if you’re in California, quite possibly gunfire.
The other situation that routinely occurs is that you are driving along – again, respecting your zone – when some jerkoff decides he wants to be in between you and the guy in front of you, even though your zone spacing clearly dictates that there isn’t enough room for him to be there. He cuts in, and your zone is instantly full of his annoying ass. Not only did he just steal most of your front zone, he also just stole most of the rear zone of the guy in front of you. He is soundly bombarded by profanity from both directions. Most of the time, he doesn’t give a shit. He is, for lack of a better term, a Bozone. He respects nothing. He obviously deserves a long, painful death, because he does not understand the zen of zone.
Your safest bet at this point is to increase your zone spacing, extract your own zone from deep within your nasal cavities, push the zone of the guy behind you out of your anal cavities, and continue driving, all the while wishing a serious and immediate telephone pole wrapping on the penis-head who just completely raped your carefully prepped and maintained zone.
As I said, this is the safest bet. However, this is not normally what happens. Normally, what happens is that you push your zone so far up the ass of the jerk that cut you off that your zone is actually completely eclipsing his zone, and quite possibly started well up the anus of the guy in front of him. I am in no way recommending this, but I can tell you that it happens, and it happens frequently, so stay alert. All of this is the stuff that 20 car pile-ups are made of.
I’m not even going to get into discussing the side zones, and the people who insist upon finding your blind spot and then suctioning themselves there like a lamprey eel on the side of a great white.
I’m really not sure how to wrap this up, other than to say this:
Respect my fucking zone. For everyone’s sake.