Friday, 28 August 2009

Another Driving Blog

Hey Ya'll!

Okay, I think it's nearly time for me to change my intro to these postings. But not right now. So it's once again a Friday, and once again I've heard talks of a party. However, at the time I'm typing this, I am paying attention to a show about the science of traffic. This is just gonna be fuel for the fire for me. Considering I posted a video out of Whales, a PSA (Public Safety Awareness) video, so it was not a "real" incident, on facebook yesterday. Most likely along with thousands of other people. The result of this was opening a dialogue with the younger resident of this house, about driving safety and awareness. So that was a good thing, I hope. While I could treat this like a true blogger's blog, and go into a lecture on driving, I don't think I will.

Okay, it's now Saturday. The party was kinda lame last night, but it was cool to see my old friend Ashley for the first time in a few years. Unfortunately by the time she arrived, I was pretty well in the tank. It would have been nice to have been able to actually talk with her, but as I said,I was drunk, and she was bothered by all the cigarette smoke lingering in the house. So that didn't work out so well. Damn, maybe next time. Bored with the goings on in the house after Ashley left, I just went to bed. I am such a party animal.

At some point during the night, and during a rather lengthy (and ultimately pointless, other than my joy of driving) drive today, I have changed my mind. I said I wasn't going to be a typical blogger, but I am now going to blog about driving and the things that seem to govern most "bad" driver's habits.

When I see an accident, a few things go through my mind; Hoping everybody is alright, wondering what caused the crash, wondering about all the aftermath, being glad it wasn't me (again), and wondering how so many people somehow got their hands on a drivers license. This all happens in a matter of a few seconds, which is also about the same amount of time it takes for an collision to become an immediate possibility and then to happen.

So many of these incidents could have been avoided if the drivers had been paying attention to the things outside of their car, more than what was happening inside their car. Things like texting, searching for something on an IPod (or radio), talking on the phone (hands free or otherwise, it makes no difference in safety), checking an email, arguments with other passengers, trying to find a CD on the floor/seat, and my personal favorite: talking on the phone and folding laundry. All of these things happen every day, and every night. It boggles my mind really. I had an epiphany back in 1997, during a drivers ed class. There is always a destination in mind when you get into a car. Always. (Maybe not the most life changing epiphany, but it has saved me often enough to consider it a life extending epiphany.) It doesn't make any difference whether that destination is work, school, the store, the mall, a friends house, a lovers house, your house, the court house, or even if the point of the drive IS the drive itself. The point of the drive is to get to a place, and usually expecting to return to where you left from. Why in the world would anybody want to risk not making it to that destination? Why do people allow themselves to act like their car is merely an extension of their living room? Are people really that self absorbed?

I started taking driving very seriously back then, and still do today. I cannot claim that I am a perfect driver, or that I'm not guilty of receiving/sending the occasional text, making or taking a phone call, or trying to find a CD. And there have been some close calls in the time I've spent on the roads. But my car has never been anything more than a car. A vehicle to transport my lazy ass several miles a hell of a lot faster than I can walk or run. Cars are heavy, and can be quite lethal when mishandled. I think a lot of people forget about that last part. Sure, most accidents that happen are not lethal, or always involving serious injury. However, even when you can walk away under your own power, there is still one thing that is true: it didn't need to happen in the first place.

Most accidents are a direct result of some distraction. More often than not the distraction had absolutely nothing to do with any part of the car or the drive. Okay, driving on a country road in the middle of the night when there are no street lights to be found can make driving rather hazardous. When you encounter such a road, it's better to slow down a bit, and pay attention to nothing but the world outside your car. Anyway, barring that one example, most collisions don't need to happen. If you are behind the wheel of a car, and paying attention to the road and all the things on it and next to it, you can avoid a large majority of possible calamities. There is no need to follow so close to the car in front of you. There is usually no need to make any use of your phone while driving. Having a stereo is a must for me, but it doesn't need to be the focus of any given drive (I put my IPod on shuffle, and then push play before putting my car in gear). Having deep conversation, or arguing heavily are things that probably shouldn't happen when you are driving. On that last one, emotions have no place when you are behind the wheel. If an emotion has no relevance to the task at hand, it's gotta go. When an emotion occurs as a direct result of something that just happened while driving, don't let it get the best of you. This is important, very very important, and not always easy to do, but worth a shot at least.

Driving is some serious business, never to be taken lightly, or ever taken for granted. It doesn't matter if you drive a super car, or a jalopy, a car is a mode of transportation, not a toy. If you have a super car, take it to a race track before unleashing it, not your local highway or side street. And for the love of driving people, don't drink and then drive!!! And I should say, driving while exhausted really is just as dangerous as imbibing and driving! It shouldn't be so hard to pay attention to your surrounding, especially while driving.

With that said, a little routine maintenance on your car does wonders for how well it takes you places, remember that. Oh yeah, turn signals and safety belts are standard on every vehicle for a reason people, and they are very easy to use.

Safe travels y'all!

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Wacky World All Around

Hey y'all!

The world is a wacky place, I'm stuck in it, and I forgot my lunch today. Thanks to the rains we had all through the night, and continuing well into the morning today, I got to see 4 different types of spiders in the basement before the clock hit 6 a.m.. I saw 3 horses I haven't seen before, grazing in a small pasture before the clock hit 7 a.m.. I saw two car accidents before 8 a.m.. During the noon hour I saw an all white egret, just chilling on a fence post. And by 3 p.m. I saw the Buffalo Grove fire marshal. Then I drove back home. Everything that happened between those things was fairly inconsequential.

I have learned what happened to my Dell account now. As it turns out, by paying off a extraordinarily old revolving past due fee, on a different account, it created a red flag on my credit report (???), and Dell decided I wasn't a worthy customer anymore. Go figure. Who knew that by finally taking an initiative to pay off a past due fee, I would actually do more damage to my credit report???!!! How much sense does that make? Anybody have a good rational explanation for me? Speaking of credit, the government has once again stepped in to try to help the people. They have made some changes to the credit "laws", in order to take pressure off of us spenders. While I was hoping that it would be along the lines of forcing them to lower every body's interest rates, it wasn't. All they did was force creditors to send notice of interest changes 45 days in advance of changing it, instead of 15 days. Ooh ooh baby, that'll make a HUGE difference!!! Right? Oh, right...not really. Thanks Feds, you really saved our collective ass with that move.

I guess I don't need to mention this, as I'm once again convinced that my family members are the only ones to read this, but I went to see my family last weekend. I had to map out how to get there from my new residence, and I'm glad I did. I would have ended up going wayyyyy out of the way, had I taken the route I'd had in mind. Kind of like I did on my way home! In an attempt to back track, without being able to properly take the time to look at the maps I had printed out (yes that's right, printed out. I have no GPS, nor do I plan to get one any time soon, so there!). It's hard to explain what happened, so I won't. I'll just sum it up as a freaky happening with the compass and immovable roads. I was heading south, took an exit to go east for a while, and suddenly I had to take another right to return to traveling south... I was a little confused by this, as the first exit I took was NOT a roundabout, but merely a ramp. Wacky I tell you.

I recently was reunited with an old classmate on FB. By recently I mean on Monday. She's (Sabina) been living in Phoenix for the last few years, but is moving back this weekend. Shortly after she gets back we are going to meet up for a drink. It's been 12 years since we last talked, and I am really looking forward to seeing her again! The stupid part is (on my end that is) that I couldn't remember her when we first befriended on FB, a couple months ago. As it turns out, she was my partner in Psychology, back at Hersey. How I couldn't remember this I do not know, as that was one of the few classes I actually liked, respected, and nearly always attended! I felt a little foolish for not remembering who I was partnered with for almost the entire course. But hey, if any of you knew me back then, you may know why some of those memories have a few clouds floating through them. And I've always been terrible with remembering names. But hey, I remember her now, so yay!

In other news, the Cubs have been sucking some serious ass this week. They are playing out in Cali, and in California they never play day games. That means that all of the games don't start until 9 p.m. CST, and I don't like it when they start so bloody late! I caught a few innings of each game that they lost. Last night was the one time I didn't see a single second of the game, and they won! So I guess I should just stop watching the games altogether from here on out.......or not...

Alright, I think that's enough rambling for now. I think I'll go see if the pool still needs to be vacuumed. Then maybe play some guitar, or possibly just listen to somebody who really knows how to play a guitar, and just sing along. All I know is tomorrow is Friday, and 3 p.m. tomorrow can't get here fast enough!

I hope everyone is having a good week, had a good weekend (a little late, I know), and has a fantastic weekend starting tomorrow! Good food, and music, and laughter to all. Peace out!

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Doesn't Feel Like 2 Months

Midday moon.

Hey y'all!

Here I am, once again using the first sentence (in my usual run-on way) to extend apologies for lagging in my posting, to the few of you who may even still check my blog anymore. So there.

It's been a pretty good weekend so far. There was the usual Friday night party, one which I was actually awake for the majority of! I believe I have emerged fully from my reclusive life, and now feel okay when large gatherings of people are around. This party left the usual clean up the next day, even though I had started cleaning while it was still in full swing. I tend to stick to my floor for the cleaning process, and this weekend yielded a pair of left behind pants. We find left behind clothing regularly, but it's mostly layering clothes, and not main pieces, like say...pants. However, the story is not one of a sordid nature, but actually part of pre-party planning on the side of the attendee. She arrived in a dress, see. With her bathing suit on under it, and she brought the pants for the post swimming portion of the evening. I was a bit surprised by the fact that somebody actually took that into consideration for once! Our friend (by our I mean all of the residents of this house), TJ, brought over a lot of foreign people, from Australia, England (oh, right, sorry, I mean the "U.K."), and one Middle Eastern person. It was kind of amusing to me the next morning, when a large group of us went out to breakfast. A couple people were talking about how cool it was to actually be able to speak with non-american people in person. I almost laughed at that, but I often forget that not everybody is familiar with exchange programs, and not every school is fully mixed, so I didn't laugh, not out loud anyway...

Yesterday was used mainly for cleaning and recovery. While lending a small hand upstairs, I got to thinking about how long I've lived here. It really doesn't feel like two months already. My how the time flies. But I don't regret the choice, and I'm feeling mostly human again, so no real complaints to speak of. Plus I have met more new people in the last two months, than I have in the last four years combined. One might think I would have found a girlfriend by now, hell even I myself might have thought that. But I run into the same old dilemma's, either they are too young for my taste, or the more usual, already seeing/married to somebody. Oh well, one of these days.

Which brings me back to today. I am going to grill tonight, and once again the one who suggested it, and what to make, is not going to eat what was suggested. If you must know, I'm going to make burgers and corn on the cob. But she won't eat burgers. Go figure. It's cool though, I don't mind grilling. Although it is currently raining, but hey, I am a Dabrowski, and I grill in all weather!!! I suppose it might stop by the time I start the charcoal, but if it doesn't it's still cool with me. At this moment I am watching the Cubs game, and they need a rally rather desperately right now. It's happened before, and it can happen again! Okay, now I'm getting distracted, so I think I'll stop here.

I hope everyone had a similarly good weekend, and that everyone got in some good music, food and laughs! Peace out y'all.

Can anybody tell me what kind of spider this is?