So I was driving again today on that highway of death, the place where this world intersects with the land of the dying, the gateway to the Nether World itself, the M6. Thousands of cars whizzing along at high speed, cutting in and out of each other, causing sudden emergency breaking, backlogging, tailgating and a general stench of fear and your own mortality, when it occurred to me: what if there was a way to make driving safer? Think about it: for so long now we drive along moving from one lane to the other, go around roundabouts where any exit could be ours or another’s, turn left and right a hundred times a day, and all we have to rely on is the gut instinct, pure intuition, or psychic reading of where our fellow drivers are headed. This may seem fool-proof enough; after all, you’ve driven that way to work every day for the last ten years, don’t other drivers know by now where you’re going?! And if you drive a BMW or Audi everyone should already know that you’re taking the second left after the first right which is where your corporate headquarters have ALWAYS been! And of course, once your wheels are half in the other lane, it’s really kinda obvious that you’re changing lanes. And when you’re in the left hand lane of a roundabout but you really want to go all around to the right, well that’s just part of the exciting ambiguity that is just part and parcel of mind-reading in metal cages only a few meters apart. Why take that away from your fellow travellers?
These are all good points, and it seems that this system couldn’t be improved upon. But it occurred to me: what if there was a way to notify other drivers of your intentions BEFORE you manoeuvred your vehicle. I know, I know – where’s the fun? Where’s the intrigue? Call me a miserable old spoilsport, but hear me out: every vehicle could have a set of lights on either side which flash depending on whether you’re moving, or turning, left or right. These intermittent illuminated directional beacons (INILUDIBs??) could be activated by the driver slightly in advance of executing his positional change, just in case the bad weather conditions (or glass) interfere with the psychic rays. Call it a failsafe, if you will. I know the cool radicals out there will point out what an unnecessary waste of mental effort and time that is, and I sympathise, but I really think we as a species can make the step-up. After a bit of practice, using these INILUDIBs (some smartass will no doubt think of a less accurate and more boring alternative, like ‘indicators’), we could make important and safe decisions much earlier on the road.
I don’t know the cost involved in implementing such a drastic overhaul of our automobile institution, but obviously the government should force car manufacturers to do it. I think it’s a good idea, it’s in the public good, and therefore it should happen. Once it does, it will become second-nature to drivers everywhere. After all, who wouldn’t want to use such an amazingly simply and efficient system? Only the suicidal reckless irrational careless discourteous ignorant misanthropic pricks of the world. And heaven knows there are none of them on the M6.