NTSB Wants Complete Ban on Mobile Devices While Driving

By on December 15, 2011 6:19:12 AM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

DrJBHL

Join Date 04/2002
+2168

 

Tuesday, the NTSB called for this complete ban:

“Federal officials on Tuesday called for a nationwide ban on the use of personal electronic devices while driving—including talking on the phone, as well as sending and reading text messages.

The recommendation, from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), came out of a board meeting intended to evaluate an August 2010 multi-vehicle accident in Missouri caused by a distracted driver.

"More than 3,000 people lost their lives last year in distraction-related accidents," NTSB Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman said in a statement. "It is time for all of us to stand up for safety by turning off electronic devices when driving."

"No call, no text, no update, is worth a human life," she said.” - http://www.ntsb.gov/news/events/2011/gray_summit_mo/index.html

The above link leads to an accident report. It’s worth reading.

“As a result of this accident sequence, the driver of the GMC pickup and one passenger seated in the rear of the lead school bus were killed. A total of 35 passengers from both buses, the 2 bus drivers, and the driver of the Volvo tractor received injuries ranging from minor to serious.” – ibid

The bottom line is that these devices are used by careless, unthinking fools while driving or operating machines which by their nature (size, weight, speed, etc.) can magnify the results of distraction.

That’s not even counting such geniuses as Alec Baldwin and his “game” which couldn’t be interrupted by something as trivial as an airplane full of other people taking off at a busy airport. How many could he (and others) chalk up every year with their nonsense?

I’m not crazy about regulations. They limit one. They also depend on voluntary compliance. People (adults) should be able to control themselves and comply. The sad fact is that "should” and “reality” is so incredibly far apart that this is a case where that the “freedom” to comply or not should be taken away.

Why do regulators even think such a “freedom” does or should exist? What these users, wait… abusers is doing kills and maims themselves and others (and also drives up insurance rates so we all pay for it).

No one has the “freedom/right/entitlement” to take another life or maim another except in well circumscribed circumstances. SMS messaging, phone calls and “tunes” just don’t figure in those cases.

These devices should have an automatic “suspend” feature activated by motion (and turned off by stopping) which could only be overcome by appropriate authorities to relay emergency messages such as “Area X: Disaster in progress, take cover.”

What about an “emergency” message from a child in danger to his/her parent? The phone/device should have an “emergency button” for such an instance, and should go to the police and activate a GPS “marker”.  Any misuse prank should cost both the parent and child.

I believe that (as usual) the abusers lack of consideration of others has reached a level with such lethal results that “choice” (which honestly doesn’t really exist in such situations for normal adults) needs to be taken away. Any tampering with such limitations should carry penalties like tampering with smoke detectors, or perhaps sterner.

Enough is enough; in fact, too much and too dear.

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December 15, 2011 1:09:13 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

"RiddleKing" Please go back to your own forum where this kind of talk goes on all the time. This is a serious subject and your tough guy or attention getting statements aren't liked or needed here. Better yet it's time to grow up and learn respect for others.

On subject I have to say this.

1. I agree 100% that driving, holding a cell and talking and texting don't mix.

2. Hands Free - I find myself that I pay total attention while driving which is something i can't say when only a very few times while using the phone hand help I have no idea at times how I even got from point A to point B because I couldn't even remember the lights I went through. When I realized that I never used a phone in the automobile again.

3. What is the difference between talking hands free ot talking to your kids, friends, or spouse sitting next to you? There will be many other opinions but here is mine. When I talk hands free I find myself paying much more attention to the road then when talking to a friend and looking over from time to time while talking to them. So take away hands free then also give a ticket to the driver talking to another person in the automobile when you see them. So lets add that to the law. Hell that will never happen.

4. When I see police cars, cars with Goverment tags on them and never see these people talking on their cell phones I would say just start this law rolling. Along with that and don't tell me you don't see it, how about all the times you have seen ploice at a light or where ever seeing the person in the car next to them talking on the cell and do nothing. When the light changes they just drive off looking for someone going 10 MPH over the speed limit.

5. Here is the bottom line. Unless there is a way to shut the phone off because it knows you are in your car these laws just can't be enforced to really make a difference especially on moving highways where most of the bad accidents happen. Hell my State, NJ has had a cell and texting ban in for some time now and nothing has changed. - It just can't be enforced_ To many people very few Police officers.

These are only my comments and opinion. So if anyone wishes to break any of my specific numbers feel free. However I'm not getting into a war over what I said and any replies back on any of them as anyone is entilted to their thoughts. So if anyone agrees with any of them fine, if not, fine. Didn't say them to get into a pissing contest.

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December 15, 2011 1:18:50 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Karen, SOSE, GalCivII and JU all have responded to my OP and have been thoughtful and well reasoned in comments from members whom I've come to really welcome on my threads whether agreeing or disagreeing with me.

Comment #23 is non-contributory and in (my standards) poor taste and for that reason I requested editing of it. In general, newcomers to other Forums don't know of the more 'family oriented' approach/accent here on WC. So, my approach is different.

If it weren't for cross posting, I wouldn't have met some interesting people nor learned their ideas.

 

edited (thanks, yrag) - was looking at the last 2 numbers in the Forum url.

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December 15, 2011 1:33:23 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

That would be # 23.

People can barely drive with two hands on the wheel. A ban can't happen soon enough.   

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December 15, 2011 1:41:24 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

DOC help me out here please as I value your knowledge. You said comment #66 is non-contributory. Is there something I need to turn on in the forums? Your last reply that I'm looking at is #27. Where is this #66? Thanks.

I think it's an intersting topic. Many different opinions can be offered with it except for #23 which should be nuked or ban the person for a week to see if they will learn respect for all.

 

OK I see you just changed it to #23 so guess there was never no #66

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December 15, 2011 1:49:24 PM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

There is no such thing as risk-free driving (or living, for that matter).  At what point on the continuum of risk does one stop proscribing?  And who decides?  It would be nice (perhaps) if we had an asymptotic curve on which could be plotted an inflection point, but I don't think that's the case.

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December 15, 2011 2:12:12 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

The inflection point is the end of the innocent victim's nose...

Individual rights are fine, but not to the point of someone elses death/dismemberment.

We're not discussing a major alteration of The Constitution nor Bill of Rights. We're talking obvious limitations set to driving. Driving is a privilege not a right. It is regulated by law. Since this messaging/phoning stuff endangers others, end of story.

My life, my kids', yours and everyone's can't be equated with sms'ing, etc. while driving.

Quoting Daiwa,
There is no such thing as risk-free driving (or living, for that matter).

That's a long way from advocating a supposed 'right' to engage in actively extremely dangerous activity, to the detriment of others.

It's one thing to deal with unavoidable risk.

It's quite another to actively maximize unnecessary risk.

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December 15, 2011 2:29:48 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

I live in a state that has already made it illegal to talk on a handset or text while driving. It is unenforced, nearly unenforceable and has done nothing to stop people from doing it. I support it being illegal, it just won't do what anyone hopes it will. I was nearly sideswiped two weeks ago by a texting driver who ran a red light, have been run off the road by people yacking on a handset, etc. It's clearly a problem, I am just not sure it has a solution OTHER THAN TECHNOLOGICALLY. The phone makers could easily enough put in software to DISABLE texting/phone calls if the phone is moving more than, say, 10 MPH. All it takes is GPS (which many phones have) and a will to make it happen. THAT is what should be legally required, you will never be able to enforce it on the consumer end.

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December 15, 2011 2:33:39 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

About time this happened. There is absolutely NO reason to be using a phone while driving. The latest tests have proven that using a mobile phone while driving is more dangerous than drink driving. If your call is so important then pull over, don't be a selfish prick and endanger other motorists for your own selfishness. If i had my way anyone caught using one while driving would not only get a fine, but also lose their licence for a period of time. I see idiots all the time with their phones glued to the ear while driving and it annoys me. Just who the hell do they think they are to be putting my life and other drivers lives in danger just because they are too selfish to pull over.

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December 15, 2011 2:41:53 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I agree that distracted drivers are a major issue, however; I do not think that banning phones will help much.  I think the cell phones being used while driving are a symptom, not the cause.  Some people are just going to find something to be distracted by.  If you take away their phones they will be looking at things out the windows,worrying about getting a ticket from the cop that just pulled up behind them or fiddling with their radios.  In my opinion any crime that risks another person's life should have very severe consequences.  You want to risk everyone's lives by doing something stupid?  Get caught and you should be in jail for life or dead.  Risk your life, but leave the rest of us alone.

On another note, please don't assume that all gamers are mentally deficient because of one kid's post.

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December 15, 2011 2:58:12 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting xinh2,
I am just not sure it has a solution OTHER THAN TECHNOLOGICALLY. The phone makers could easily enough put in software to DISABLE texting/phone calls if the phone is moving more than, say,

2-3 mph. Usual strolling speed. Doesn't even need GPS (but that's ok too)... enough to have a motion sensor which when tampered with bricks the phone.

Quoting Nimbin,
About time this happened. There is absolutely NO reason to be using a phone while driving. The latest tests have proven that using a mobile phone while driving is more dangerous than drink driving. If your call is so important then pull over, don't be a selfish prick and endanger other motorists for your own selfishness. If i had my way anyone caught using one while driving would not only get a fine, but also lose their licence for a period of time. I see idiots all the time with their phones glued to the ear while driving and it annoys me. Just who the hell do they think they are to be putting my life and other drivers lives in danger just because they are too selfish to pull over.

Major "Bravo!".

Quoting Delmoroth,
I think the cell phones being used while driving are a symptom, not the cause.

I don't think it has to be belabored... enough to have "Autobrick" either the phone or the car gets bricked.... j/k - enough for the phone to be shut down by the carrier when the phone is moving > 2-3 mph.

Quoting Delmoroth,
Get caught and you should be in jail for life or dead.

That's a bit over the top.. enough for the phone to shut down.

Quoting Delmoroth,
On another note, please don't assume that all gamers are mentally deficient because of one kid's post.

Absolutely agree. See my #27.

"Stereotypes are great for stereos, not people." - doc, 12/15/11, Forums, WC.

 

 

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December 15, 2011 3:01:06 PM from JoeUser Forums JoeUser Forums

We agree more than disagree, Doc.  I'm not arguing in favor of 'the right to engage in actively extremely dangerous activity, to the detriment of others'.  But there is no end to what might arrive at the end of an innocent victim's nose.  The 'inflection point' is the point at which risk becomes unavoidable no matter what you do, which is the point to be 'decided' by someone/something.

For better or worse, the notion of an 'entirely innocent' victim is a bit of a fallacy because we accept that driving a vehicle entails inherent risk - if we choose to drive, we choose to place ourselves at risk.  Removing the emotional aspects of 'victimhood', it is no more 'necessary' for the innocent victim to have been driving than for the irresponsible driver to have been distracted.

Because I agree that operating a motor vehicle is a privilege, not a right, the only way to avoid the innocent victim's nose is to ban motor vehicles.  Anything short of that, you are left with the same dilemma - as long as humans are operating them, innocent victims will be at risk.  Of course, one solution is the auto-pilot, which would let us text & talk to our heart's content, but that will take a while to materialize.  Shifting to mass transportation increases the number of people at risk per event, but is safer overall (e.g., air travel).  For better or worse, it's not particularly practical as a substitute for POV's.

What I disagree with is the notion that a conversation between two people in a vehicle in motion constitutes a proscribable (unnecessary) risk, or that using your thumb to decrease the radio's volume is an unnecessary risk.  For that matter, interacting with any vehicle controls or interfaces constitutes a 'distraction', i.e., the very act(s) of operating a vehicle.

If a device could be created (at a non-prohibitive cost), whether incorporated into the device or the vehicle, that would selectively disable voice calls & texting while a vehicle is in motion (without disabling GPS devices, radio reception & use of a smartphone as a radio, etc.), I'd have no problem with it - it would be no different than an air bag system, just another safety feature.  But a simple ban on such use has already been demonstrated to be ineffective.  It just adds another item to the perp's charge sheet.

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December 15, 2011 3:13:44 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

More like Ipad posts.

I once replied my mail and posted something here while stuck in traffic. This ban will make it very difficult for me to troll and be a nuisance.  

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December 15, 2011 3:18:48 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting Daiwa,
What I disagree with is the notion that a conversation between two people in a vehicle in motion constitutes a proscribable (unnecessary) risk, or that using your thumb to decrease the radio's volume is an unnecessary risk. For that matter, interacting with any vehicle controls or interfaces constitutes a 'distraction', i.e., the very act(s) of operating a vehicle.

I'll agree, Doc.

I hate those damned phones... no good comes of them, unless it belongs to Hamas/Hizbullah and the Mossad is the telephone 'repair' man.

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December 15, 2011 3:25:44 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

id like to note that "portalble electonic devices" might include "mp3 players"

 

and. considering my only mp3 player is my phone... to which i hook an audiocable to my car...

 

but.

 

portable is the word here.

 

I for my 4 hour car trips from home to college... if i have to set up my computer in the passanger seat inorder to pump soundwaves into my ear , than SO BE IT.

 

the bright light of the monitor will prolly help me stay awake for longer too. hmm........

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December 15, 2011 6:06:40 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

If the two parties to the conversation are in the same environment [same car] the concentration loss is significantly less...as BOTH parties are aware of the surrounding traffic...level of 'danger'.  It is ONLY a significant issue when one is in an entirely different surrounding....ie. home or office and probably isn't even aware the other isn't likewise.

When you converse with someone you effectively socially relate to them - and that isn't in your passenger seat.

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December 15, 2011 6:07:41 PM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

I wish the inter-tubes weren't so corrosive of meatware memory skills. I managed to find an old PBS News Hour story about some statistical research indicating that mobile phone conversations are more distracting than conversations with a passenger. http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/transportation/july-dec09/driving_07-28.html 

What I can't find quickly is some other neurological research I read about that seemed to indicate that talking on a phone actually involves a much larger portion of the brain than talking face-to-face with someone. If I recall even half-correctly, the hypothesis was that when you talk to someone not physically present with you, your brain struggles to simulate the non-verbal cues that are a large part of natural conversation. There's also the lossiness problem--normal speech sucks up cycles big-time just to fill in and clean up the incoming auditory signal. Audio signal strength over any phone system is worse than most in-person contexts.

Liberty is near and dear to my heart, but my liberty ends when a drunk driver or mobile phone addict behind the wheel kills me. The fundamental 'fixes' there are cultural, as we've seen with the dramatic reduction in drunk driving over the past three decades. But unlike the drunk driving problem, this toy-based problem also can be partly solved through smart regulation. The idea of locking out GPS-enabled devices that are moving above speed X is not at all surreal. Devices built into luxury cars are even easier to engineer--they can simply connect to the speedometer. 

And since the OP is an MD, I thought it an interesting cooincidence that today's Times has an article on "distracted doctoring." http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/health/as-doctors-use-more-devices-potential-for-distraction-grows.html . Both the roadways and our hospitals seem to be suffering from a marketing-driven obsession with digital devices. Those of you who are old and thoughtful enough to remember the change should always be cautious when IT, a subset, is discussed simply as "technology." That change of language marked a substantial change in our political economy, and many aspects of that change are not fun.

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December 15, 2011 6:27:50 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

My 2 cent...

 Professional Baseball player can hit a 100mph fast ball ,Pro Jai alai players catch 188mph balls ,Pro Race car drivers such as NASCAR drive 200mph while talking about the handling of the car and the other drivers.........

Simply Put SOME CAN SOME CANT!!!!!!

but even the ones who can't are still on the road and using phones!

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December 15, 2011 6:48:56 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting GW Swicord,
And since the OP is an MD, I thought it an interesting cooincidence that today's Times has an article on "distracted doctoring." http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/health/as-doctors-use-more-devices-potential-for-distraction-grows.html . Both the roadways and our hospitals seem to be suffering from a marketing-driven obsession with digital devices. Those of you who are old and thoughtful enough to remember the change should always be cautious when IT, a subset, is discussed simply as "technology." That change of language marked a substantial change in our political economy, and many aspects of that change are not fun

Indeed. "Distracted Doctoring" is also caused by hospital loudspeakers, nurses and endless hours without sleep. Some digital devices can help in decision making, however. They can also have apps which link the hospital to the office making critical labs and imaging availableto the M.D. very quickly.

The idea is to prioritize, however.

MRI's, labs and driving don't mix. So.. it's a matter of "Location, location, location."

Quoting theAVMAN,
Simply Put SOME CAN SOME CANT!!!!!!

No, my friend. No one can and not risk what isn't his to risk: Your and others' lives and limbs.

 

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December 15, 2011 6:53:56 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Tying together an accelerometer log and your gps in phones that calculates your speed might be a good approach.  Take for example the phone knows you are driving at 70mph so when you dial out it automatically dials 911 and transmits your gps data to the emergency desk and begins logging your route and speed estimates there.

That might make it a little more enforceable.

This sort of thing is already used in automobiles by insurance companies.

 

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December 15, 2011 6:59:02 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

EDIT:

I was distracted while posting this. Should of looked at the page# I was reading.

Forgive me.

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December 15, 2011 7:29:02 PM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

Quoting DrJBHL,
Indeed. "Distracted Doctoring" is also caused by hospital loudspeakers, nurses and endless hours without sleep. Some digital devices can help in decision making, however. They can also have apps which link the hospital to the office making critical labs and imaging availableto the M.D. very quickly.

Careful, there, old man. I'm the son of an alpha nurse who helped bring hospice to my local community and spent much of her professional life struggling with the white-coated-god problem. The role/rank is not the important thing, it's the level of professionalism.

That aside, the digital health info thing is a subject I've been following since the mid '90s. One of the things I learned from my mom back in the '70s was that bad handwriting on prescription forms and hospital charts could and did cause harm to patients. So I was predisposed to support the idea of moving medical documentation to digital systems, way back when cell phones were pricey status symbols and Microsoft was only starting to let marketing twits name the software releases.

But back in that 'early adopter' moment, I had no idea what the world would look like when the streets, sidewalks, and hallways were full of people paying at least as much attention to a machine as they were paying to their surroundings. One of my life goals is to die with my birth being my only personal hospital experience. But if I should end up undergoing something like bypass surgery, I definitely don't want a tech in the OR accessing any data that isn't directly related to the success of the operation. 

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December 15, 2011 7:33:59 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

This has zero, zilch, nada to do with safety.  Think about it.  There are 10's of millions of cell phones on the road that weren't there in the 1980's.  And yet, death and injury statistics remain flat, taking into account the number of additional cars on the road in general.  We should be seeing an exponential increase in such accidents and yet we don't.  The truth is, the same guy who plowed into your backside while on the phone would have done the same 30 years ago lighting a cigarette, taking a bite of a sandwich or any other distracting activities.

Studies done comparing states with and without cell phone bans show NO reduction in accidents even though phone use has been reduced significantly in the banning states.  That matches the overall comparative statistics between 1980's and current accident rates.

From an automobile insurance study (a group that would obviously love to pay out for fewer accidents):

"While the bans have resulted in actual reductions in phone use, they have not resulted in any reduction in crash rates, according to the Institute.

The Institute found similar results from bans on text messaging while driving. In fact, in a strange twist, texting bans actually resulted in more crashes in several states, according to an IIHS study."

I heard the head of NTSB on the radio and she says CBs in trucks should be banned as well.  The interviewer didn't think to ask about taxi radios but I'm sure she would have said ban those, given her mindset -- namely, that she is smarter than the rest of us and needs to rescue us from ourselves.  She was asked about passengers in the car and gave a lame excuse that the talking passengers counted as extra navigators.  Yeah, so many 7 year olds are great at that aren't they?   The best a passenger has ever done is yell "watch out" when you are either too close to do anything or far enough away that you already noticed the same danger.

Someone should pull a Michael Moore on her and follow and film her, because I suspect we'd find her on her own cell phone more than off.

If you don't feel safe using a phone or any other device including a car radio, then I agree with you, pull over to the side of the road.  But please don't impose your fear on others.

The NTSB wants to mandate always-on tracking devices in every car, are you all also in favor of that?  They say that's for our safety as well.

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December 15, 2011 7:49:54 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting GW Swicord,
I'm the son of an alpha nurse

And I was a nurse.

The point was that when writing an order, a nurse calling or talking to a Doctor can be a distraction.

Quoting GW Swicord,
The role/rank is not the important thing, it's the level of professionalism.

That was insulting and deserves an apology.

As to old man... not quite, but getting there. Probably because I keep the phone in the glove compartment while driving.

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December 15, 2011 8:51:35 PM from WinCustomize Forums WinCustomize Forums

Quoting gevansmd,
This has zero, zilch, nada to do with safety. Think about it. There are 10's of millions of cell phones on the road that weren't there in the 1980's. And yet, death and injury statistics remain flat, taking into account the number of additional cars on the road in general.

Other factors cloud the stats.

Modern cars are intrinsically safer, both primary and secondary safety.

The incontovertible fact is...one brainless bitch in Germany plowed through an entire group of cyclists while texting.

Though to be fair...she probably didn't have the IQ to do either, let alone both.

But she's still an efficient killer...and I'm sure she's since texted everyone how she got a slap on the wrist.

Remember...this is NOT about an attack/restriction on your RIGHTS.

Driving is not a right...it's a privilege... that should NOT be abused.

 

As for Nascar/racing drivers being able to do 200mph etc while talking.....even professionals fuck it up.  I've seen it.  36 years 'in the game' of reporting racing drivers' stupidity and 'incidents' - it's where 'JAFO' comes from.

Channel 7 in Australia pioneered in-car cameras in motor racing...and a logical progression was for in-car communication to the TV commentators.  Several entertaining crashes at Bathurst resulted from the distractions....even the motorised remote camera head was disliked by some drivers....and it didn't even talk....it just moved.

Team communications in modern racing are circumstance-relevant.   The drivers are NOT arguing about a pay rise with their boss ...or compiling a list of shit to buy at the supermarket.... or waxing eloquent to broker a new business deal/get a secretary into the sack.

Too much of the resistance voiced here is simply a claim that it's the 'other driver' who's incapable of managing...afterall I'M a GOOD DRIVER.

No you are not.

And even if you were....it's that incompetent 'other driver' who slams into YOU.

You're no less dead, but at least you WERE 'competent'. 

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December 15, 2011 8:52:35 PM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

I'm trying to quote Doc's reply 48, but the forum code is listing RiddleKing as the user in updated versions of both Opera and IE 8. 

Re the nurse-doc thing, what can I say but that sometimes I have more respect for testicle owners who've both nursed and doctored than I do for medical womenfolk in general. It's a post-feminist thing, I guess. 

Re "old man," that was not meant as an ageist remark; one of the other things my mom passed on to me was a bit of Anglophilia. But on the older-than-many-folks channel, using a phrase like "glove compartment," well...

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