Thursday, April 06, 2006

Le Bump

Have you ever wondered why speed bumps in parking lots are painted yellow? I researched the subject and discovered that speed bump paint is specially formulated to chemically neutralize any desire by drivers to race through parking lots.

Yes, it’s true. The paint is designed to emit hydro-moronic vapors which temporarily paralyzes a driver’s higher order functions turning him or her, in an instant and for a moment, into a moron.

The symptoms include a heightened fear of speed typified by slowing down to 0.001 miles per decade, a sudden fear of heights as one climbs the steep flank of the speed bump and uncontrolled anxiety that one’s front end alignment will suddenly shift 90-degrees.

Apparently, the effects are magnified by orders of magnitude and long lasting if one drives a Volvo.

So, last week there I was in a Major Hurry. Somehow time got away from me and the day was ripening fast; almost too ripe, even for a professional procrastinator like me. As I sped towards Kroger’s to pick up a couple of bags of ice I got passed by a pick-up truck, obviously in a hurry, too, as I was boogying along at a ticketable speed.

Instinctively, I pulled in behind the truck. “Plow the road, baby!” I yelled, “I got your back!” And we flew down the highway, swerved into the turn lane and bounced into the parking lot.

The ensuing collision that would have happened next was prevented only by my mongoose-like reflexes. Unexpectedly, the driver of the truck was overcome by hydro-moronic vapors, braked hard and nearly stopped in front of a tiny, itty bitty, little speed bump that I normally take at flank speed.

Ever. So. Slowly. The driver crept. Over. The. Bump.

(There was a total eclipse of the sun.)

All the time I had gained in our mad dash to the parking lot was lost, and then some, in our glacial creep through the parking lot.

What was wrong with that guy? Why did he stop? I couldn’t believe it. In a truck no less! Talk about adding insult to injury.

Then I noticed a bumper sticker that read:

I brake for poodles.

That explained it! I should have known he’d stop for speed bumps.

He was driving a Ford F One-Fifi.


Anonymous said...

I was following an enormous SUV through a parking lot, and I swear the truck was hiking up its skirts and tip-toeing over those damn teeny bumps that my Honda Civic ate with a spoon. Sheesh!! Pansy!!

Anonymous said...

I knew I liked you. Mongoose-like reflexes indeed. Way to go, Rikki-tikki-tavi!

Anonymous said...

It's only funny 'til someone loses a gasket... but, er, I wouldn't know anything about that...

Shalee said...

Sheez Louise! It's so frustrating when someone slows down like that. I always thought those bumps were there for testing my suspension - you know to make sure it's working properly.

Any my sticker says, "I Aim for Poodles".

Anonymous said...

I have to agree that it's the SUV and pickup truck drivers who seem totally spooked by speed bumps. "What'd you buy the damn thing for, bozo!" I want to shout.

Bret said...

(Disclaimer: I am not an SUV driver/owner.)

It's the clearance, Clarence.

The big pickup/SUV drivers are used to speed bumps in parking garages that they can barely get into on level pavement, so they have to creep over the speed bumps in order to avoid a crushing bounce.

Or it could be their slothlike reflexes.

Anonymous said...

So much for "off road capabilities" if they can't even run over a poodle or two.

schmims said...

I HATE when SUVs stop for little stuff like that.

Tom said...

I got a 4x4 truck and pedal to the metal at any object in my way...but then again mine is a 1994 and pretty beat up...actually a bump could cause it to fall apart...hmmm...maybe I should slow down for those bumps...

Andrew Purvis said...

Where I live (my building, though probably the city, too), people zip over speed bumps at around 40 MPH. Think not, dear friends, that I jest. Both axles cross the bump in about 1/4 second.

I know which terrifies me the more in a residential community.