Road Rage

Almost three years ago, I moved across the country from California to Georgia, and I drove the whole way by myself (well, my cat was along for the ride, but I was basically on my own). I'm one of those odd people that really enjoys long drives, so this was not a horrible idea to me. In all honesty, that 4 day drive was really one of the easiest I have ever had. I ran into very little traffic, the weather was good, the directions were clear (read: I did not get lost)-- all in all, a good trip.
Since I've been back in the south, living in both Tennessee and Georgia, I've noticed a phenomenon that I rarely experienced in sunny SoCal-- drive-by flirting. I drive a Honda (a nice, boring sedan) and I'm a normal, reasonably attractive (so I'm told) woman in my mid 30s, so not much about me is going to attract a lot of attention of the freeway, or so I thought. I cannot tell you how many times I've been hit-on while driving since I've been back. Truckers honking at me, guys keeping pace with my car so they can wave or mouth God-knows-what to me, excessive staring, etc. It's really weird. I don't really understand the purpose. Do they think I'm going to pull over and give them my number, or worse, go off somewhere with them?

This never ever happened in California. There, everyone kept their eyes to themselves (or their cell phones or newspapers) and no one ever tried to "catch my eye" while driving. Of course, there is a widespread problem with eye contact there anyway, but that's a whole other issue. In TN and GA, though, this seems to be ongoing problem. Who does that? One time, on the way to visit my parents when I lived in Nashville, a guy kept pace with me and would casually look over from time to time. Then, when he took his exit, he smiled and waved as we parted ways. I'm OK with that. It wasn't creepy, and he wasn't being lewd or ridiculous, so I didn't mind. But many, many other times, it's been the opposite-- gesturing, waving frantically, tongue wagging, truckers doing a double take when I drive by and then trying to keep up while doing all number of things to get my attention.

I just can't believe men try to cruise women on the interstate. Is it just me that finds this bizarre? Do men really think that works? Are there women that do that to men? Maybe there's a whole culture that I'm not aware of, one where people meet in their cars on the road and hook-ups or relationships are born. I think I'd prefer not to know. I just like to mind my own business, keep my eyes on the road, and rock out to my iPod. So if you see me out on the interstate in my little purple Honda, just keep your eyes on the road, buddy-- it ain't gonna happen.

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