good times local news media events catalyst santa cruz california metro silicon valley news local events san jose weekly pajaronian watsonville local newspaper, news events pajaro valley california gilroy dispatch local news events garlic festival santa cruz media events local california weekly king city rustler newspaper media local events car sales buy new car media
50.7 F
Hollister
English English Spanish Spanish
May 24, 2022

Out of my mind

He’s driving and I think I’m glad
Have you ever heard of the Law of Unintended Consequences? It
seems to be a constant these days. This happens when you do
something you think is the right thing to do, only to have this
do-gooder action lead to a chain reaction of unexpected events.
He’s driving and I think I’m glad

Have you ever heard of the Law of Unintended Consequences? It seems to be a constant these days. This happens when you do something you think is the right thing to do, only to have this do-gooder action lead to a chain reaction of unexpected events.

For example, it’s illegal for drivers younger than 18 who have been driving less than a year to take other kids in the car with them. This rule was set down a few years back, since statistics showed that teenage drivers are more likely to get in accidents if they have other people in the car.

Well, if you’ve ever been a teenager, you know why this is. They start talking to their friends, playing music loud, waving to people they know … and before they know it, they’ve driven into a ditch somewhere. Or worse.

So it seems like a good idea, right? And it is, basically.

But what you have now are a lot more cars on the road, since all of these young teens must drive themselves individually to school and other events. So: more cars, more traffic, more pollution, more gas being guzzled.

It’s kind of funny, in a way – whenever teens congregate anywhere, there’s never enough parking space.

On the other hand, there are fewer accidents. But that’s how things go sometimes.

So take your pick: Fewer accidents, or less global warming? What an impossible choice.

Then again, you have the teenage drivers who skirt the issue entirely and wait until they are 18 to get their licenses. Once you’re 18, the no-passenger rule doesn’t apply.

That is exactly what my son Ross did. Once he turned 18, he couldn’t get down to the DMV fast enough to take that driving test.

Because he knew that all those silly rules that apply to under-18 drivers wouldn’t bother him at all. No driving curfew, either – currently, younger drivers can’t be on the road between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m.

In addition, he didn’t have to go take professional driving lessons, as younger teens must these days.

(Too many rules to remember, don’t you agree?)

So here was the Law of Unintended Consequences again, slapping me square in the face. Here’s my son, still a relatively inexperienced driver, but he has all the rights and privileges of any other adult driver. By simply waiting until his 18th birthday, he bypassed a number of rules that would have made his beginning driving experience safer.

Drat.

Ross also feels he now has leeway to criticize his mother’s driving, but that’s another story.

Luckily, he seems to be doing fine so far. He’s had his license for about a month now, and did wait a few weeks before taking any passengers. No accidents, big or small. And only a few times have I worried about him getting home late.

So here’s another unexpected consequence. I suddenly have more time on my hands, now that I’m not driving him everywhere.

“See, Mom, isn’t it worth it?” he asked me the other day. “And we’re not using as much gas, either.”

Smart aleck kid. He knows exactly how to put the best spin on those consequences.

Please leave a comment

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

SOCIAL MEDIA

4,205FansLike
150FollowersFollow
1,121FollowersFollow