Sure most stereotypes are a bit extreme; not all Venetians wear striped shirts and power little boats along with a big stick, all the while singing romantic songs (I suppose, although I have never been to Venice so I could be wrong). Most stereotypes do have a bit of a basis in fact though. Not necessarily when it comes to ethnicity, more so when it is about a certain demographic. Like the SUV driving people on cell phones.
Before I get into the story I want to make one thing perfectly clear, I am not intending to say that if you drive an SUV and talk on the cell phone that it makes you a bad driver, quite the contrary, I am intending to say that if you are a bad driver to begin with you are more likely to buy an SUV (for your own protection) and talk on the cell phone while driving it. I think that people who are actually good drivers don’t worry so much about the size of the vehicle, the number of airbags and such in their cars because it is their goal to avoid accidents, not to cause them and hope they live through it.
One other thing to throw out there before I continue, I think that SUV’s should not have power steering as an option. You should really have to work to move that big boy around. That would require using both hands to steer it, thus reducing cell phone use while driving. An added bonus would be that the ditzy little women who drive the SUV’s would not be able to steer it with both hands, making the roads safer all around. (Not everyone who drives an SUV is a “ditzy little woman”, not every woman is ditzy, there are also a lot of men that are every bit as ditzy. Lots of women would be capable of steering an SUV without power steering as well, just not the ditzy ones.)
While walking out of the local convenience store today, I was passed by a woman talking on a cell phone. She proceeded to get into her SUV (it was one of the larger ones, I think the Cadillac one, but I didn’t see the name plate), start it up and begin to back out of her parking space, never once looking anywhere other than straight ahead. A small sedan was attempting to pass behind her to get to the gas pumps, but was forced to stop to let someone walk from the gas pump towards the store.
Ms. Ditzy doesn’t know any of this of course, since it didn’t happen on her windshield and that was the only thing she looked at the whole damn time (I swear to god that woman’s eyes never looked towards any of the mirrors, she never turned to look behind her, she just started backing up).
The guy (I only found out it was a guy after the fact, not that it matters) in the sedan tapped his horn a couple of times to get her attention, but she never even looked around, she just kept backing up, pretty slowly, but still. The guy in the sedan locks up his horn for at least a full second, the chick in the SUV still doesn’t stop, doesn’t look in her mirrors, she just keeps talking on the phone. The guy in the sedan must have realized that it was pointless to keep honking, as he then turned to look behind him, and backed quickly out of the way. He honked a couple of more times after she got backed up, but she just put it in gear and drove off.
The guy jumped out of his car at that point and started running towards the SUV, but by then she was on the main street, merrily driving away, having no idea that she nearly just went monster truck on the guy’s little car. I went to talk to the guy (who I didn’t know, which is odd in this little town), and he asked if I saw what happened. Of course I saw what happened, but there was no collision, thanks to his quick reaction, so there was really nothing that he could do about it.
He did have a great quote though, “what was that bitch thinking?!” Well, if she had been thinking at all, she would have at least checked her mirrors before she started to back out of her parking spaces (yes, she was taking up two spaces with the SUV, well only the size of one parking space but she parked over the center of the dividing line). I asked him if he had insurance, he said that he did, so I asked why he didn’t just let her back right up over him (his car being at least fifteen years old). He made a pretty good point, his car was so old that the insurance payment wouldn’t be able to replace it, although he did say that he really thought about it.
Maybe the woman in this particular SUV was the exception, maybe the majority of ditzy bitches that drive SUV’s while talking on the phone are really good drivers, I dunno. What I do know is that she reinforced the stereotype (deserved or not) that SUV’s and cell phones don’t mix.