We could (and have) gone on and on about bad drivers and their irritating habits. You don't have to look far to find examples of those. To change things up, we thought we'd focus on the things that make people good drivers. It's time to shed some light on the positive things that motorists do. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it highlights a few things that every driver should commit to muscle memory.
If you regularly do any (or hopefully, all) of the items on this list, then we salute you. Keep up the good driving and spread the word to others!
1) The car doesn't jerk when you brake.
This is pretty simple, yet many motorists still treat their brake pedal like a stray ipis crawling under their shoe. A smooth and steady foot is key.
2) Nor does it jerk when you take off.
If jerky braking lurches your passenger's head forward, then sudden launches will smack it up against the headrest. Neither is ideal, so ease up on those pedals.
3) You give way when necessary.
Here's a fun little game: If you notice that the car behind you to the left or right is leaving a lot of space in front, switch on your turn signal on that side. If the car suddenly springs to life to occupy that space, then it's a guarantee that that driver only has his best intentions in mind. Giving way goes a long way, folks.
4) You use your indicators properly.
Note that we used the word 'properly.' It's a given that you should use your left and right turn signals to indicate which way you're going. But far too many motorists abuse their hazard lights, treating them as a license to pull over wherever the f*** they want. Unless you have a legitimate emergency, don't block traffic and think it's okay just because your blinkers are on.
5) You know how to park.
We can forgive if you park a little bit crooked but still well within your slot's lines. To err is human and all that. What we can't let go of is when people park too close to (or on top of) the lines, or in any other way that inconveniences others. Parking lots are a public space, so you should always be courteous of others and their needs as well as yours.
6) You change lanes early and with conviction.
By early, we mean you change to the proper lane well before any road dividers or turns, which also shows that you won't jump any queues. And by conviction, we mean that you choose a lane and stick to it. You don't zig-zag around in an attempt to overtake everyone, nor do you sit between two lanes to see which one moves faster.
7) You leave ample space between you and the car in front.
Tailgating is juvenile at best and dangerous at worst. There should always be a few seconds' gap between you and the car in front whenever you're moving. The faster you're going, the bigger the physical space should be.
8) You read and follow the street signs.
Granted, our street signs aren't always legible nor logical, so sometimes a misread traffic rule isn't actually the motorist's fault. But if for example there's a gigantic sign that says "Right lane must turn right," then you have no excuse not to comply.
9) You don't get distracted by non-driving things.
Your phone, the radio, your passenger's nagging, Liza Soberano's mesmerizing new billboard---all of that should be secondary to keeping your focus on the road. You can catch up with the rest of the world when you reach your destination. Until then, eyes front.
10) Your driving is forgettable.
On the track, we'd all like to be as memorable as Senna. But on the road, we're just one of thousands trying to get by. Like lining up to ride the bus, no one should remember you for being particularly rude or aggressive.
Your passengers shouldn't be texting their loved ones about how you're driving too close to other cars or nearly getting into accidents. And the other drivers shouldn't have a mental image of you as THAT douchebag they encountered this morning. If you can reach your destination safe and sound without causing any fuss, then you're doing something right.