Friday, September 3, 2010

Vehicular Dodgeball



I'm going to take some heat for this. I know it.

I made an observation recently that I decided to discuss here but before I started running my mouth about it I thought it might be wise to collect some evidence.

We live in a suburban neighborhood that was built in the fifties. Here in Tennessee, they've never really saw the need for sidewalks and our neighborhood is no exception. This puts Stella and I walking in the street. I noticed that as the cars are coming toward us, some of them slow down and move over a considerable distance and some of them don't. Some of them are speeding and some aren't, in fact some wave at us or nod or acknowledge that they've seen us. It may come as a surprise to some that those considerate, cautious, above average drivers - appeared to be of the male persuasion.

I know. It sounds crazy and I didn't want to believe it myself but yesterday morning during rush hour Stella and I carried a little note pad with us on our walk. To keep things simple (and lower our chances of being run over) we counted only ten men and ten women drivers, all of whom were obviously on their way to work. These results are preliminary, as being "on the way to work" is potentially a confounding variable and we here at Carny Dog like our data to be as pure as possible but here's what we found: All of the drivers we noted were inside the neighborhood; not on a main thoroughfare.

Eight out of ten men drivers slowed down and moved over.
Two out of ten women did.
All ten women were speeding.
One in ten men was speeding.
Six women were talking on their cell phones.
Zero men were.
Eight men made eye contact with us.
Zero women did.

Conclusion: Again, we can't draw any real conclusions but a couple of possibilities do come to mind:

1. Women are more likely to be late for work.
2. Men typically love dogs. And women*
3. Women think they're bulletproof - until something happens.
4. Men are naturally protective of themselves, women, animals and their cars.
5. Women are used to doing ten things at once.
6. Men pay attention to the road and are generally better drivers (eek!)
7. ?

What do you all think?

*It should be noted that I make no effort whatsoever to be cute at seven o'clock in the morning, I rarely wear shorts and am usually only whistled at by perverts and construction workers too far away to recognize that I could be their mother.

Meanwhile, there's some serious road blogging in our immediate future. If anyone out there has ideas about visiting our house while we're away, you should know that I've sublet it out to two bikers named Rebel and Loco. They've been instructed to shank first and ask questions later.

3 comments:

giantspeckledchihuahua said...

Interesting and surprising stats. In dirtville we don't have enough traffic to collaborate. Here, in
Apple Town we don't have to walk on the roads at all.

We are going to start paying attention, though, and see what we see

Where are you and Stella headed?

Susan Rose said...

OMGosh! You've nailed me with your conclusions about men/women drivers. I DO think I'm bullet proof. I'm a type A driver. I'm afraid I would be annoyed by anyone walking their dog in the street and not notice that there was no sidewalk. I'm guilty as charged. I promise to TRY to do better. (I'm serious.)

About being whistled at... While I was on vacation, a carload of teenagers (judging from their behavior) yelled that I had a fine a___, then sped off down the road. I had to laugh because if they'd looked at my face, they would know I could be their grandma.
Y'all have a fun trip!

Barbara said...

Hmmmmm, interesting/scary piece of research there!