How To Piss Off Other Drivers, A Boston Perspective

I saw an interesting article on the Internet that got me thinking. The Article was titled Road Rage 101: How To Piss Off Other Drivers and I found it on I will include a portion of the article from the website later.

Being from Boston gives you a different perspective on driving than from most places in the United States.  You don?t understand traffic till you have tired to commute into Boston. I live 22 miles from the city of Boston, but to commute into the city typically takes 40 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes. That is with knowing a lot of shortcuts and after years of construction with the Big Dig to make it better. The worst part it does not matter when you commuted into the city the traffic was always there. Here is a picture of Boston Traffic at 6 a.m. on a summer day….


To quote the big dig website:

The Problem

Boston, Massachusetts had a world-class traffic problem, an elevated six-lane highway called the Central Artery that ran through the center of downtown. When it opened in 1959, the Central Artery comfortably carried about 75,000 vehicles a day. It carried upwards of 200,000, quite uncom-fortably, making it one of the most congested highways in the United States

Traffic crawled for more than 10 hours each day. The accident rate on the deteriorating elevated highway was four times the national average for urban Interstates. The same problem plagued the two tunnels under Boston Harbor between downtown Boston and East Boston/Logan Airport. Without major improvements to the Central Artery and the harbor crossings, Boston expected a stop-and-go traffic jam for up to 16 hours a day – every waking hour – by 2010.

The annual cost to motorists from this congestion – in terms of an elevated accident rate, wasted fuel from idling in stalled traffic, and late delivery charges – was estimated at $500 million.

To make matters worse, Boston Drivers are tough. Here is a partial list of things to consider then driving in Boston. For the complete list  Basic Rules For Driving In Boston

Basic rules for driving in Boston

Yes, everything you’ve heard about driving in Boston is true. If you’re from some mild-mannered place like Nebraska, just turn around now – or stick to cabs and the subway!

Some rules: 

  • To obtain a general idea of how to drive in Boston, go to a Celtics game and carefully watch the fast break. Then get behind the wheel of your car and practice it.
  • Never take a green light at face value. Always look right and left before proceeding.
  • When in doubt, accelerate.
  • Very generally speaking, the intransigence of the Boston driveris directly proportional to the expense of his American-made car, and inversely proportional to the expense of his foreign-made car. But in applying this formula, bear in mind that they are all more or less intransigent.
  • In the long run, parking your car in a lot is always cheaper than parking it at a meter.
  • Drivers whose cars sport “I Brake For Animals” bumper stickers may brake for animals, but they may not brake for you. Watch it.
  • Taxicabs should always have the right of way, unless you are bent on suicide.
  • Never, ever, stop for a pedestrian unless he flings himself under the wheels of your car.
  • The first parking space you see will be the last parking space you see. Grab it.
  • Learn to swerve abruptly. Boston is the home of slalom driving, thanks to the Registry of Motor Vehicles, which puts potholes in key locations to test drivers’ reflexes and keep them on their toes.
  • Never get in the way of a car that needs extensive body work.
  • Double-park in the North End of Boston, unless triple-parking is available.
  • Always look both ways when running a red light.
  • Never put your faith in signs that purport to provide directions. They are put there to confuse people who don’t know their way around the city.
  • Use extreme caution when pulling into breakdown lanes. Breakdown lanes are not for breaking down, but for speeding, especially during rush hour.
  • Never use directional signals, since they only confound and distract other Boston drivers, who are not used to them.
  • Similarly, never attempt to give hand signals, Boston drivers, unused to such courtesies, will think you are waving them on to pass you.
  • The yellow light is not, as commonly supposed outside the Boston area, a signal to slow down. It is a warning to speed up and get through the intersection before the light turns red.
  • Never pass on the left when you can pass on the right.
  • In making a left turn from the right lane, employ the element of surprise. That is, do it as suddenly as possible, so as to stun other drivers.
  • Speed limits are arbitrary figures posted only to make you feel guilty.
  • Whenever possible, stop in the middle of a crosswalk to insure inconveniencing as many pedestrians as possible.
  • Remember that the goal of every Boston driver is to get there first by whatever means necessary.
  • Above all, keep moving.

And good luck. You’ll need it.



 The Boston Rotary “Roundabout” Effect

 In Boston we have Rotary’s. Instead of a 4 way intersection, you come onto a circle. Orginally the people who had the right of way who those entering the Rotary. Then about 20 years ago they changed the rule to the cars already inside  the Rotary have the right of way.

Half the Boston Drivers thinks the right of way is the car entering the rotary, the other half of the Boston drivers thinks its the car already inside the rotary.

Boston Tradition: Honk Instant the Light Changes

It is traditional in Boston to honk your horn at cars that don’t move the instant the light changes. A few minutes delay means your commute might be substantially longer

The Boston Wave

People who drive in Boston think giving you the middle finger is like waving. 

Signally is a Sign of Weakness

In Boston when you signal, they take it for a sign of weakness. 

So when I saw this article, it caught my attention. Here are a few excerpts from…

Road Rage 101: How To Piss Off Other Drivers 

Perhaps you?ve only just recently acquired your license to drive, or perhaps you?re a grizzled veteran of the salty tarmac, but either way, you?re interested in perfecting the art of driving as a bloodsport. Believe it or not, angering your fellow motorists to the point of inspiring physical violence isn?t a game of chance, but rather a highly scientific, learned skill. To truly master the art of pissing people off, you need the benefit of years of practice behind the wheel of an extremely obnoxious car (I recommend either a tuned Honda CRX or any type of chromed pickup with a lifted suspension), true greatness can?t be achieved overnight. Everyone needs to start somewhere though, so to get you started on your path towards perfection, I?ve outlined below a few tips that will help nurture and extract your hidden inner douchebag.

1. Do Not Use Turn Signals

Do not under any circumstances ever use your turn signal, period. Turn signals or traffic indicators of any kind are a sign of weakness, and they give your enemy valuable information regarding your battle position.

2. Do Not Yield To Drivers Preparing To Execute A Turn

If the driver in front of you indicates that he is preparing to execute a turn, do not slow down. Instead, maintain your constant speed (75 mph highway, or 55 mph residential) and seconds before your car makes high-speed impact with his rear bumper, turn your steering wheel to the right or left (depending on which direction the vehicle is turning) by a fraction of an inch, barely avoiding a full-speed collision. Remember: under no circumstances should you ever remove your foot from the accelerator. In most cases, the amount of space you will have between the turning driver and the next physical barrier (be it a parked car or an oncoming lane of traffic) will be very, very limited, and the faster you are traveling the less likely you are to make contact with any stationary objects.

3. Treat Construction Zones As An Obstacle Course

Construction zones and the many hurdles they throw at drivers make them the perfect place to hone your skills as an asshole, especially since there?s usually a local cop posted nearby who can serve as an excellent official score keeper. Remember: +1 point for every traffic cone you clip, +2 points for every motorist you cut off when merging, +3 points for every rude hand gesture you receive from the city workers you barely avoid hitting, and +4 points for every additional officer summoned by the aforementioned cop to apprehend your vehicle.

4. Speed Limits Are Relative

It is not important that you observe the posted speed limit, as long as you observe the speed limit posted by the guy in front you. Yes, that kid barreling down the left hand lane at 90 mph in his Acura RSX is an idiot, but he?s also the guiding light to your wayward ocean liner. As long as you?re travelling slower than Speedy Gonzalez is, when he and you finally blow by that police cruiser, that cop is only going to have the man power to pull over one of you and you can bet he isn?t interested in some stoner driving a beat-up Saab, he?s going for the big game.

There is a lot more to the article. 

5. Behave As Though Out-of-State Tags Grant You Diplomatic Immunity

You?re from Ohio, venturing onto the New Jersey turnpike for the first time. You?re not sure what exit to take, so you steadily drive 20 mph under the speed limit lest you miss your turn-off. Or perhaps you?re from Georgia, and during your road trip to the shore, you feel it necessary to bestow a little bit of Southern Hospitality on every driver you meet. So in addition to driving at roughly the same speed as the tourist from Ohio, you also make frequent, sudden stops to yield to other motoristseven when you have the right of way.

Although drivers in both cases would be strictly prohibited from operating heavy machinery in their respective home states, their behavior is perfectly acceptable when travelling outside of their state lines. After all, it doesn?t matter how they do it up/down/over here, you?re from Ohio/Georgia/Florida, dammit, and you are the greatest thing on four wheels since Bobby Labonte.

Posted Michael Corey,

Founder & CEO, Ntirety

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