Strange things do hap­pen be­hind the steer­ing wheel

Bray People - - Moving Parish -

SO HAVE YOUR pals ever con­fessed to bump­ing their motors as a re­sult of send­ing or read­ing a text while be­hind the wheel? Or more squirm­ingly, have you ever had a nar­row es­cape your­self; check­ing out what that im­por­tant one in your life has to say and then wham, the car bumper in front of you is so close you could lick the plate?

Well driv­ers who text are be­ing tar­geted as one of the main in­sti­ga­tors of col­li­sions on Ir­ish roads and the bounty on mo­bile tex­ters’ crowns has been set.

State­side, Big Arnie has sent his own stern mes­sage to those mo­torists with more on their minds than the road in front of them by in­tro­duc­ing puni­tive mea­sures to com­mence in Cal­i­for­nia on Jan­uary 1.

The furore over tex­ting from be­hind the wheel hit the spot­light re­cently af­ter a Bri­tish study re­vealed that it is a more reck­less pas­time than be­ing drunk or high. The study fol­lows re­ports that tex­ting was the rea­son be­hind a com­muter train slam­ming into a freight train in Los An­gles two weeks ago, killing 25 peo­ple. Spec­u­la­tion sug­gests that the en­gi­neer on the com­muter train was tex­ting at the time.

But then cars have long been the kind of place where risky busi­ness has taken place. From the ‘lewd’ in­dis­cre­tion of Hugh Grant avail­ing of Di­vine Brown’s ser­vices down a dark al­ley in 1995 to the stashes of drugs found un­der bon­nets and up ex­haust pipes on a monthly ba­sis around Ire­land. Cars, it seems, in­vite crime.

Here if you are caught us­ing a phone while driv­ing, you face a fine of ¤60 and two penalty points. A pretty ex­pen­sive call. And in a new de­vel­op­ment on ra­dio bul­letins along­side the weather, traf­fic and sports news, you can now get tip-offs as to where the gar­daí will be set­ting out their speed traps.

But in re­al­ity, like most things, it comes down to com­mon sense. If you are be­hind the wheel of a car then you should be con­cen­trat­ing on one thing, and that’s driv­ing. It’s not to say you are in­ca­pable of mul­ti­task­ing but you are jeop­ar­dis­ing some­body else’s life by do­ing so. There’s a whole list of LOCK-INS are an un­der­val­ued com­mod­ity. More brain­waves, brain­storms and in­tel­lec­tual de­bates hap­pen when the bar­man’s sun goes down than peo­ple ever give credit for.

The un­for­tu­nate part is that lit­tle is rarely re­mem­bered.

But late yes­ter­day af­ter­noon some­thing did flash­back from a lock-in of old and that was de­bat­ing Ge­orge Har­ri­son’s con­tri­bu­tion to The Bea­tles.

While a gent had his gui­tar gen­tly weep­ing in the cor­ner, some­one re­quested the clas­sic ‘Here Comes the Sun’ and from there lead the ar­gu­ment that Ge­orge wrote num­bers to match if not sur­pass the works of Len­non/McCart­ney.

From ‘Some­thing’ all the way up to ‘Got my Mind Set on You’, Ge­orge had a song­writ­ing knack all of his own.

As one bi­og­ra­pher aptly la­belled him, the band’s ‘Dark Horse’ had that spe­cial lit­tle thing that stood him out from the rest of the crowd. And well worth check­ing out. STALKER’S HEAVEN Face­book is sel­dom far from everyday con­ver­sa­tion and peo­ple are con­stantly on about in­vi­ta­tions from un­de­sir­ables to get in touch when they want noth­ing to do with them. Em­ploy­ees are also fret­ting as bosses can now log on and peep over their shoul­ders. Well, shut their ac­count down and pri­vacy, like magic, will be re­stored.

With such a pool of odd­balls out there rummaging about, the whole Face­book craze is a whole lot of trou­ble just wait­ing to hap­pen.

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