Thursday, April 01, 2010

look, ma, no hands!

You probably disagree with me about the Hands Free law on the books in my state (and maybe yours, too: if not now then probably soon).

I am opposed.
I fundamentally, wholly disagree.

See, as I figure it: we *already* have road rules with regard to, say, crashing your car into someone else's. Don't Do It. Maybe Joe Blow is distracted by his cell phone. But maybe I'm distracted by puking kids or some fave song on the radio I haven't heard in forever. Let's see those things become outlawed. Seriously. Not long after Oregon's cell phone driving ban took effect at the first of this year, I found myself zipping along the long highway between my house and the big city. My husband was in the passenger seat. We had a thermos of coffee and some empty mugs with us and I asked him to pour me some. He did. And then I asked him to top me off with a splash of unsweetened almond milk (at which point my long-suffering mister asked who brings a box of almond milk along on an errand. i do.) and he declined. He said he couldn't do that while driving. "You're not driving, nutball. I am." But he insisted and so I, being a careful driver with a nearly impeccable record (save for some youthful heedlessness), did the obvious: I grabbed the mug of coffee + the box of almond milk and I fixed myself a hot drink.

Do I recommend this ad hoc fifty miles per hour barista bit? Not really. I admit it's not particularly safe. But you know what? Neither is it safe to go rummaging around the floorboard for some sort of vomit vessel when I see a green kid, hand over mouth, in the backseat about to blow.

(i'm sure i've gone on about this here before, but i can't find the post just now.)

I've been sprucing up some new bloggy digs (wordpress: here I come!) and doing all the rest of regular life stuff (how *you* doin', Spring?) an I don't have the mental wherewithal to compose a well written persuasive argument here. I will admit that the hands free law did, in fact, compel me to start using the earbud/mic that came with my phone. I don't even use it that much while driving (the music in the car is generally too loud for carrying on conversations, ha!), I use it all the time all day long. Phone in my pocket, earbuds in, I can have a chatty phonecall and weed in the garden or fold laundry or whatthefuckever without a cricked up neck or a fried brain. Oh yeah? Legislators? I'm much MUCH more concerned about ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION FRYING MY BRAIN than i am about making sure drivers aren't distracted by phone conversations. Because drivers will always be distracted by something. Drive safe, yo. It's sort of that simple.

A very good friend sent me this link. I laughed so hard I nearly drove off the road.


Jessica Powers said...

I don't disagree with the intent behind the law (keep people safer) but I think we have too many laws. Every little thing we do is legislated....

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