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April 12, 2006 at 12:30 pm

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When I bought my hybrid, I put what I thought was a friendly/tasteful

on it:

“I ♥ my HYBRID.

If you can read this, you’re breathing cleaner air.”

It was meant purely in a fun and light-hearted sense, and in fact I hoped bicyclists and pedestrians might catch sight of it and realize why their lungs weren’t burning quite so much with those last few puffs of air as I drive by (one roadway I travel often is part of a popular road cycling route.)

I put it on our FEH in part so I didn’t blend in to the sea of SUVs on the roadways, and it certainly helped that not be the case.

While the occasional attention it garnered was cute (I posted about the enthusiastic, albeit probably tipsy, group of young males who hollered “Whooo Hooo, HYBRID!” after parking behind me at a stoplight,) it’s gotten a little unnerving.

{In retrospect, they’d probably just watched the

episode and I, smugly, took it as a compliment! :(}

What I didn’t expect were the sneers and aggressive driving seemingly precipitated by getting on my bumper and reading the sticker. The race course lane changes two feet from my tailpipe, when I’m travelling with the flow of traffic.

So, in the interest of my peace of mind, the bumper sticker has come off and the back window’s been washed. My friends, family and husband’s co-workers knew the sticker wasn’t meant as a smug-generator, but in retrospect it can be misread. “My vehicle’s better than yours.” or “My car’s exhaust smells like roses.”

I’d rather the part I play in any “hybrid education” be a little less “in your face”, I guess.

I realize I’m probably projecting some of my “fears of being smug” on to strangers, but I’d rather err on the side of caution. There will always be aggressive drivers, and I may find people drive identically behind/around me without the sticker, but I have a feeling the percentage of said occurrences will go down a little.

People that care will see the “HYBRID” badge, anyway, just as I see every Prius and Honda Civic Hybrid on the roads now when I used to see none.

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2 Comments

April 12, 2006

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Like you, I hate to see your bumper (window) sticker go, but removing it was probably the wisest course of action.

“Road rage”, competitive driving (on our highways, not race tracks!) and rank stupidity seem to be on the rise!

I’ve experienced similarly stupid behavior over the past nine years of driving my Camaro.

It’s small and sleek – one of those cars which look like thry’re breaking the speed limit when parked at the curb.

Of course, there’s the occasional driver who wants to prove their acceleration is better when a traffic light turns green

What amazes me is the huge number of drivers who attempt to pass me (”she’s got a handicapped plate – she’s going to slow me down!”) when they have to go 15 mph over the speed limit and indulge in unsafe lane-changes to do it!! (Haven’t they noticed that I’m exceeding the posted limit by an average of 6-10 mph over the speed limit???!!!

April 12, 2006

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Mom, we need to work on that last bit, or you’re going to be the third Blackburn in as many years to earn a traffic ticket.

That said, we all know the flow of traffic on most roadways these days is at least 5mph over the posted limit, if not the 10mph you mention, so I’m not sure there’s a right answer… until a police officer pulls you over.

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