|Outer-space planning session|
I mean, do you remember the man everyone lovingly called "Shakes," the driver ed teacher who told us without quibble that the people currently driving on a highway have the right of way over the people on the on-ramp who want to be driving on the superslab. In other words, people who come barreling down the ramp and just cut on in, in front of speeding SUVs and GMCs and a hopped-up trucker with a trailer full of cabbages and not a lot of maneuvering room. Clearly, drivers who do this just got here from some other planet.
You're sitting a big intersection and the people in the turn lanes have the green arrow. The arrow goes yellow and then their light turns red. BUT here comes Mr Hurrypants, who is running late for a Ménage à trois, so in the face of all that's sensible, smart and legal, he's gonna run that light so that he can take his place in the Twister game. On his home planet, hardly anyone stops for red lights; it's considered an "infamita," which is an Italian entree involving rolled-up flank steak and flanked-up roll steak. Quite tasty.
Here comes the trash truck down the street! And here comes the traffic confusion. The guy behind the Pak-mo-bile swings out and needs someone to let him come forward. As a considerate motorist, you do, and then when he zooms up past you, you get no wave or nod or high sign. They don't do that way beyond the galaxy, where he was born. They don't have trash trucks, either. The robot butler crushes it into an energy cube and it fertilizes the 40' tall edamame stalks out back.
Anyone who goes Christmas shopping around Baltimore knows this ritual...you're looking for a place to park the Biscayne and a guy leaves the mall with a stack of gifts. Hopefully, you follow him to his car and when you see that the gifts he has purchased for his family consist of 50-lb sacks of walnuts and tanks of compressed air, you know that sinking feeling that confirms his alien status when he opens his trunk, deposits the gifts, and closes the trunk, heading back to the mall for another foray among us earthlings.
This has nothing to do with his driving, but chances are good that he will also consider purchasing Electric Cigarettes, Dead Sea body scrub, a cellphone case bearing the images of the cast of Dexter, and a fruit smoothee.
And on the way home from the mall, chances are good that you will be behind a driver who comes from that far-off land in which replica testicles hang from the back bumper instead of license tags, and it's considered a compliment to sport a bumper sticker exhorting women to show their mammary equipment.