CMA Fest, Crazy Drivers and Following The Rules

rules

CMA FEST:  Country Music, Drinking and Hot

Before my wife and I moved to Nashville in the summer of 2014, I had never heard of CMA Fest.  Even now, this thing called “CMA Fest” week always seems to slip up on me.  If you love Country Music, drinking and hot weather then this is the week for you.  I am not a fan of any of those.  Yeah, I know the obvious question:  Why do you live in Nashville then?  Hmmmm.  Good one.  I’m working on changing that.  CMA Fest week is the week those of us working downtown dread.  Parking rates are doubled, streets are blocked and people are everywhere.  There are a lot of free concerts but mostly those I call “minor league” acts.  They are not yet big names in Country Music.  Will you see a celebrity?  Yes, but it will cost you.  I have yet to see a celebrity during CMA Fest.  I did see Brothers Osborne from a distance last year but got a better view on a TV monitor.  They also have this thing called Fan Fair which is a place you can have a Meet & Greet with someone but, again, most of them or either unknowns or has-beens.  When we were looking at the list we kept saying:  “I thought they were dead”.    Just to give you a sample….here are the first ten on the list:  Amber Hayes, Bailey Bryan, Becky Brown, Brett Kissel, Charles Esten, Debbie Anthony, Granger Smith, Jeffrey East, Jon Langston, and JT Lewis.  I would have to Google these folks to know why they are being meeted and greeted.

CRAZY DRIVERS:  Don’t be one of them

And if traffic wasn’t bad enough on a normal day, Nashville drivers are just crazy.  I’m sure it is much the same in other big cities.  Drivers here do whatever they want to do.  Here are the top 10 things that are problems:

  1. Impatient Drivers
  2. Drivers not staying in their lane when turning
  3. Impatient Drivers
  4. Drivers merging onto Interstate expecting you to stop.  (I’m not kidding about this one)
  5. Impatient Drivers
  6. Tailgating
  7. Impatient Drivers
  8. Pedestrians not obeying their signals or using crosswalks
  9. Impatient Drivers
  10. Distracted Drivers eating, texting, talking on the phone, daydreaming, etc.

Did I mention impatient drivers there?  Yes, that is the common theme.  People do not want to wait for anything or anyone.  They don’t want to obey simple traffic rules.  It’s all about going faster than you and do whatever it takes to get there.

FOLLOWING THE RULES:  Do you mean me?

I read the story last week of this kid who was to graduate and decided not to follow the dress code and was clearly told there would be a zero tolerance.  When he decided to ignore the rules and was banned from walking at graduation he and his mother were upset about it.  Seriously?  What is wrong with people?  Why is it so difficult for people to simply follow directions?  I see this too many times.  People park where they aren’t supposed to park,  co-workers take leave they don’t have or fall into Old Faithful when signs tell them not to cross the line.  I don’t know.  I guess I live in the wrong time period.  There are reasons for rules.  It seems that those who break the rules get away with it.  The rules aren’t enforced.  I remember taking classes when the instructor waited for a few minutes for the stragglers to get there.  So you penalize the people who obeyed the rules and got their own time?  Makes no sense to me at all.  To be honest, I think people are scared to enforce the rules out of fear of getting shot or attacked.  People do that now. Even if they are called out for being in the wrong, THEY are the ones who get upset.  I don’t understand that.  Must be a mental thing.

Oops, my lunch hour was up a minute ago.

 

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Driving 101: The Best Rule Of All

For the past several weeks, I have been written about various driving rules and laws that many people ignore.  I am not one that will say I am perfect in my driving habits.  I get impatient like everyone else and I will take shortcuts and get angry with other drivers.  While living in Nashville, I have found that most people out there basically will do whatever they want to do.  Forget the rules.  Ignore the fact that Nashville is supposed to be the “friendliest city in the United States” which I wonder if the ones who ranked it had to drive in the traffic.

Having been stuck in traffic, frustrated by those who disregard the right-of-way rules and impatience of others who do whatever they want, I can tell you that the best rule of all that should be followed can be summed up in this:

DO WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO

Simple.  The lines and signs are put on the roads for a reason.  Instruments are on our vehicles for a purpose in traveling on the public roadways.

  • Do what you are supposed to do…..USE YOUR TURN SIGNAL.
  • Do what you are supposed to do…..YIELD TO TRAFFIC WHEN YOU HAVE A YIELD SIGN.
  • Do what you are supposed to do…..TAKE YOUR TURN AT THE 4-WAY STOP.
  • Do what you are supposed to do…..YIELD TO PEDESTRIANS.
  • Do what you are supposed to do….PULL OVER AND STOP FOR EMERGENCY VEHICLES.
  • Do what you are supposed to do….STOP WHEN YOU HAVE THE RED LIGHT.
  • Do what you are supposed to do….SLOW DOWN WHEN IT IS RAINING.

I am sure there are others you can add to this list but these are the most common things I see everyday driving in and around the Music City.  I have lived in three cities over the past ten years and each one had their own issues.   In Macon, Georgia, drivers were notorious for tailgating,  in Tampa, Florida, they were impatient and in Nashville, they do whatever they want to do.    I guess it’s that country/renegade/rebel mentality.

I don’t know what’s happening with the “25-year plan” we heard about to improve traffic in Nashville but the fact is that Nashville is growing rapidly and the currently infrastructure for traffic is going to be a growing problem.   Instead of golf carts scampering around town or other non-standard forms of transportation, the city really needs a good plan for moving around the city.  There are too many cars and not enough space for them all.

In the meantime, drivers need to just simply do what they are supposed to do.