By on October 23, 2015

IcebergSlim

There’s a certain portion of America that doesn’t think that anything is real until Katie Couric tells them it’s so. I prefer Ms. Couric when she’s AutoTuned but the nice people at Michelin have other ideas. They’ve hired her to talk to teens about getting, and giving, good advice behind the wheel.

So, with the weekend ahead, let’s talk about advice, shall we?


The Michelin campaign is called #SharingSafety. What makes it fairly unique is that it considers the role of peers in influencing the decisions that teen drivers make when driving. The idea is that you put your advice on Twitter using #SharingSafety and that way the best advice can be “crowdsourced”.

I’m not sure how I feel about that; it sounds too much to me like the infinite number of monkeys that, when given Kinja accounts, always fail to create Shakespeare. I got plenty of bad advice about driving from my peers when I was younger. My mom, on the other hand, had something specific, and specifically useful, to tell me.

“You trust your car to work all the time,” she noted, not without criticism in her voice. “You think your brakes will always work and your car will never stall in an intersection and that you can always run at the limits of the car’s capabilities because they will be exactly the same. The day will come,” she frowned, noting how I hauled my 200SX hard-alee across three lanes to grab a very narrow spot in traffic, “when that is not so.”

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122 Comments on “The Best Advice You Ever Got?...”


  • avatar
    Chris Tonn

    My dad gave this sage advice:

    “Always assume that every other driver on the road is at the very least, an absolute moron, and at worst, actively trying to kill you.”

    • 0 avatar
      319583076

      I’ve modified that saying to something like, “Everyone on the road is always trying to kill you – including you. Drive accordingly.”

    • 0 avatar
      yesthatsteve

      My dad told me, “You drive like you expect everyone to do what they’re supposed to. Most people are idiots.”

    • 0 avatar
      ckb

      The problem with that is that its too easy to take things personally and get pissed off (for me anyway…and I’d imagine a great deal of the american public as well). A slight tweak would be to treat driving more like a video game. Something like all the other cars are just obstacles guided by random variables. That way some jerk that studied your life history and decided that you deserve to be cut off at that moment could instead be treated like a garbage can that just blew over. And if you’re not the type to get mad at the wind you have a much better chance of not getting tunnel vision and screwing something up a little ways down the road.

      Course, your version is much easier to articulate.

      • 0 avatar
        bill h.

        In some ways this isn’t far from the advice I gave my own sons when I was teaching them to drive, but just a little less moron-centric. I tried to tell them that a good driver is like a good fighter pilot–practice energy management and ALWAYS practice situational awareness.

        Left unsaid was the part about getting on other drivers’ tails and blowing them off the road with your 50-caliber guns.

      • 0 avatar

        @ckb

        This is what I keep telling myself! But it took getting into my 60s to start listening to myself.

    • 0 avatar

      OT but my daddy told me “son, don’t let ’em take your gun. That’s what they tryin’ to do. Son, don’t let ’em take your gun. They’re takin’ your bill of rights away from you.”

  • avatar
    jdowmiller

    Michelin makes some nice tires IMO

  • avatar
    2drsedanman

    My dad always said driving was like life, you have to look ahead to make sure you don’t run into anything. While simple on its face, the statement covered a whole range of things that he taught me about driving (importance of maintenance, don’t follow too close, slow down in the rain, don’t put yourself in bad situations due to carelessness). Smart man.

    Also, not car related, he told me to marry the skinniest woman I could, because they only get fatter as they age. He also said marry the prettiest woman one I could, that way when you are fighting you can still stand to look at her. Guess the old man had it out for fat ugly women.

    • 0 avatar
      tresmonos

      Your father is/was a wise man.

    • 0 avatar
      VolandoBajo

      Marrying the skinniest one only works if she isn’t anorexic.

      And there is the question of whether to marry a dumb one, an average one or a smart one.

      A good while back, after a long successful run as a single man, interspersed with a couple of short unsuccessful runs as a married man, I met a woman who was both as pretty as any woman I have ever seen, as well as the smartest. (Humblebrag warning, but it is germane to the story.) Fortunately I am no slouch in the brains department either, so it didn’t give me an inferiority complex.

      But like the man who was looking for the perfect woman, and when he found her, found out that she was looking for the perfect man, I suddenly had my hands full, in more ways than one, as I never had before.

      It took the two of us about a decade to negotiate “the rules of the road” for our relationship. There was never a moment that we didn’t feel that we wanted to be with the other person for the rest of our lives, and that no other solution was possible, but we were often plagued by fear that the other one might be playing us big time.

      She was also the first and only woman who made me feel like I wanted to do things for her just because they were good for her, and not just so I could continue getting what I wanted out of the relationship.

      I had never really thought about how innately selfish and self-centered I was in relationships, until I finally found someone who I truly loved. There was nothing to compare the past to, until she arrived, and nothing I achieved in my past in the way of relationships would ever satisfy me again, now that we have what we have with each other.

      I know this sounds sappy as hell, something I have always tried to avoid like the plague. But believe me, if you are seeking really true love, be careful what you ask for, because when and if you get it, you are going to have a tiger by the tail.

      It wasn’t even like I chose to be open and vulnerable. It was suddenly just a part of my life for the first time, and she tells me it was the same for her too.

      We literally had to grow up for a decade before we could finally settle down and enjoy what we had without fear or insecurity, she in her mid-twenties already, and I in my early forties, when we met.

      It has been the best thing that has ever happened to me in this, my life, which I consider to have been a fairly fortunate one anyway. But for that first decade, it was like standing at the edge of a cliff at the end of the road you have been journeying on all your life, with a vision of Heaven above and Hell below. You know that turning back is not an option, yet you cannot conceive of how you will bridge the gap to where you want to be.

      If it hadn’t worked out I probably would have drank myself to death many years ago, though I can’t say for sure. But we finally were able to accept that we were loved as much as we loved, and that all we had to do was to accept the gift. Sounds simple now, but it took two people with well in excess of a combined IQ of 200 a decade to figure it out.

      The point of all this is that for much of those first ten years together, though not now, I thought that the best advice I had ever heard was the old calypso song that went “if you want to be happy for the rest of your life, make an ugly woman your wife.”

      Best advice other than that that I ever got: a Marine NCO telling us AMTRACgrunts to always check the hull plugs. They were designed to screw into the hull with proportional and steadily increasing torque as you tightened them, and they ALMOST never worked loose.

      To check them, you had to crawl under the large, amphibious tanklike vehicle and crawl on your stomach or back in sand full of sandspurs.

      One guy in our unit failed to check them one time, and the result was that his AMTRAC ended up on the bottom of the bay, followed by a ride back to shore on a large wrecker-like hook at the back of another AMTRAC.

      But it has also come to mean to me that you always check anything that could be a problem, no matter how remote the probability of failure seems, especially if failure ends up being relatively catastrophic.

      Always check the oil before a trip, always make sure the stove is off before leaving the house, always make sure that no one left anything in the oven before turning it on…the list goes on.

      But they are all just applications of the principle of “always check the hull plugs.”

  • avatar
    tresmonos

    Not everyone can think logically about the systems in their automobile. I think your concern needs to be implemented into drivers’ education courses. Educate the youth on what to do in specific scenarios. Let them know that they have maybe 1-2 good depresses of the brake pedal should they lose power. What should they do when the electronic throttle control goes haywire or their floor mat gets in the way and keeps the accelerator depressed.

    Heaven forbid a brake line or powersteering line or (god help them) either line breaks on a Hydroboost set up. You need to know what your new driving inputs will be limited to how you need to react.

    Maybe this will also help all the idiots who drive around without their rear brakes because they’re too cheap or lazy to repair a rusted through line or their caliper pistons are now acting as a friction point against a rotor.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      I always used to get a notice from my Virginia State Inspection station that the rear brakes on my BMW were half worn. I would react to this information by assuring myself that I would be ready to replace them when the car reached 280,000 miles, since they were half worn after 140,000 miles. Then I put the car up on a lift at my friend’s shop. The ‘sliding’ rear calipers had been frozen for years, and the outside pads were practically brand new while the inner pads were practically gone.

  • avatar
    bball40dtw

    Iceberg Slim must have driven some glorious broughams in his day.

  • avatar
    bill h.

    A high school friend’s father owned a local Dodge dealership, where I spent one summer working as a “lot” kid–cleaning cars to prep them for delivery, running errands etc. [Mr. Baruth might know of this place–Westside Dodge in Columbus]. One piece of advice he gave me 40+ years ago has stuck all this time–

    Get a car that you LIKE, not one you have to “settle” for. Because there will always be days when something goes wrong, whether it’s a flat tire or some mechanical problem–but if you like the car, it’s a whole lot easier to deal with because you’ll still like it when it’s fixed.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      That applies to a lot of things.

    • 0 avatar
      Ryoku75

      That is probably some of the better advice I’ve heard.

      I’ve brought cars because I HAD to, I’ve brought cars based on internet reviews, yet I’m always happiest with the ones I buy “because I want to”.

    • 0 avatar
      Neb

      Two bits of advice I got from here regarding cars that I think are profoundly true:

      1. “Get the car you really want, and then own it for a long time.” For the reasons bill.h stated – and it saves you money. And, ah, you get the car you really want.

      2. “The quality of your shoes has a bigger impact on your quality of life than your car does.” This one seems a bit more controversial, at least among enthusiasts, because it seems to discount all the enthusiastic fun you can have. Not my, or the quote’s intention at all. But if you think of a car as a device for moving you around, it makes perfect sense. Once it is mechanically sound, even my rusty old Camry got me around the same way a car costing $70,000 instead of $700 would have.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Damn, and they warned me that sitting on cold steel ingots for a smoke break would give me hemorrhoids!

    Hope that shoot went fast.

    Brrrrrr….

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      When I first moved to Tucson, I had a black car with black vinyl and no window tint. One of my Mexican coworkers told me that if I didn’t get some tint and remote start, I’d get 2nd degree burns on my a$$hole and hemorrhoids would shortly follow. Terrifying. He used many awesome Spanish swears in statement though.

  • avatar
    skitter

    Lane changes should not wake a sleeping passenger.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    Car advice:

    Dad: “Always know the width of your car”, and “don’t rely on your brakes” (meaning don’t wait ’til the last second to apply them). Best advice to this kid of 16.

    Head mechanic and manager of Beale AFB’s auto hobby shop where you could work on your car: “Drive your car.” Meaning I was always tinkering with it when absolutely NOTHING was wrong with it, and NOTHING needed replacing or adjustment! It’s as if I was looking for trouble and an excuse for spending what little money I had!

    Someone (can’t remember who): “Never buy a car that doesn’t run!” Retroactive advice to me long AFTER I bought a 1957 Chevy restoration project w/o an engine! Sold it in boxes 5 years later. Never again!

  • avatar
    WhiskeyRiver

    Advice:

    Buy low, sell high.

    Avoid a cure that is worse than the disease.

    If you are hiding, don’t light a fire.

    Vessels large may venture more but little boats should keep near shore

    A deaf husband and a blind wife are always a happy couple.

    If it doesn’t smell ss good as your sister, don’t eat it.

  • avatar
    Matt Foley

    “If you spin, both feet in.” – Chris Kneifel

    Unless you’re Danny Sullivan, in which case you just steer out of it and go on to win.

  • avatar
    rev0lver

    “Keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel.”

    Jim Morrison

  • avatar
    Truckducken

    Don’t fuck up.

  • avatar
    an innocent man

    In slick wintry conditions, “Them brakes’ll get you INTO more trouble than they’ll get you out of.”

  • avatar
    Crabspirits

    My Father: “You don’t need a stick. You’ll downshift in the winter and then you’ll be sliding.”

    Now I use the “shift-lock” technique all the time when I’m sliding.

  • avatar
    omer333

    If its got tits or wheels, it’ll give you trouble.

    Hardly PC, but when you’re repairing a beat to death 3rd-gen Camaro for the third time in as many months, and. You’re debating whether or not you should keep the ex-exotic dancer as a girlfriend, it becomes appropo.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I will add if it flies, floats, or f***s, rent it.

      Oh and keeping ex strippers and the like is similar to buying the police car used for regular patrol duties at auction.

      The stories I could tell you. Let’s just say they all at one point or another put in some “overtime”.

      • 0 avatar
        omer333

        It was the first and last time I had an ex-exotic dancer as a lady friend, but it was the second I had a beat to death Camaro.

        I won’t go down that road with either ever again.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        I have four watercraft and a wife. I am in big trouble…

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Indeed, but there’s always a new life waiting for you in Yellowknife.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The trick with watercraft is to buy used. We have an 18 foot Four Winns, two waverunners, and a Hobie 16. I’m looking at $25K all in, including trailers and maintenance. I budget about $1000/year for issues. The last two years have been good, and that is just money in the bank.

            I don’t know what the trick is with women. It’s roulette I guess. I got lucky.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I don’t think there is a “trick” per se.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I will say that if you, on any other man is getting married, and your future wife is acting crazy about wedding details that don’t matter, or not able to delegate things with trust and respect, RUN AWAY. YOU STILL HAVE TIME. That is how it will be all the time. The future husband will either live his life battered into submission, or there will be a divorce.

            I am in a wedding in December, and everyone is terrified of the bride except for me, the best man. I will not let her treat me like crap, but at the same time I am not a jerk. My friend’s future marriage is doomed. I am not allowed to plan the bachelor party anymore because I don’t want to discuss the plans with her (let her plan it).

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Bball my life is so upside down I don’t know what the future holds. But I do know the current stock of women in these parts is quite damaged compared to the stock I grew up with, and Lord knows we all had our problems. This concept of battering a husband into submission is the opposite of the natural order of man, and certainty goes against the Marxist-Communist concept of “equality” pushed upon us, which I find deliciously ironic. Personally I will never let such a thing happen, for as laid back I as I most of the time I was not put on this Earth to submit to some woman. In fact she was put her to submit to me in a wifely way. End of story. Give me twenty minutes with your friend and I will set him straight to the realities of life in this world and at least he would have this knowledge before entering into such a mistake.

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            Where do you live, 28-Cars-Later?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Western PA

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            Every region is a bit different. I didn’t ‘fit in’ down south, moved up to Louisville and it’s the perfect blend for my disposition. So long as you don’t live in the sticks, you’ll eventually find your niche.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Thanks for the advice. I figure a year and I might move elsewhere depending on career.

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            I ran the gauntlet through several dating apps in upstate SC and in Louisville. I shoot pool on a APA league, which is where I’ve developed my semi-degenerate social circle in both regions.

            Everyone is the same, just with a different social front that corresponds to the local culture. The Bible thumpers in Greenville still drank and f*cked even though the front would have let the Michigan cultured me to believe otherwise. Just gotta assimilate and play a little to the mold up front to break the ice. Just don’t sell yourself out or resist playing the game too much.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Thanks again. I’ve learned the face people show the world doesn’t always match the real one, myself included.

            “semi-degenerate social circle”

            Ha.

            I used to shoot pool but haven’t for years as our old hall (Chalkys) was sold and converted into a restaurant. There is a pool hall not far from where I live now… hmmmmmmm…

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            Ya got trouble…Trouble with a capital “T”
            And that rhymes with “P” and that stands for pool!

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          If it floats, flies, or [email protected], rent it…

          As for women – IMHO, they are all fundamentally crazy. The only question is how deeply it is buried, and what form the crazy emerges in. Some forms are mostly harmless, some are not.

  • avatar
    Garagezone

    Cover yer rig !

  • avatar
    Nick 2012

    My grandfather told me to not focus on the car directly in front of you; instead, he made me focus on traffic well ahead of me so I would have time to plan and prepare responses rather than react. He learned this driving his family’s meat-market truck in the 30s.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    Best advice: Always drive under the assumption that everyone else on the road is either drunk, stupid, or doesn’t have insurance.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    What’s Chinese driving advice going to be like?

    “Awways sit back seat! Let drive-ah die!”

  • avatar
    awagliar

    As a wee lad, I had a tendency to play with the power window switches incessantly. Up down up down — oh look, a squirrel — up down (I was a little ADD too, just like a real boy). Reaching his breaking point, my father chided me with, “It only has a certain number of ups and downs before it breaks”.

    This was in the pre-Internet days, and ARPAnet had no memes, but this definitely had meme potential. It certainly became a running joke in my house, applied to a bevy of mundane items from the buttons on the remote control to light switches and the refrigerator door, basically anything a young child might play with. (My father was a bit prudish, so that advice never got applied to things that somewhat older boys might play with, at least not out loud.)

    I’ve now passed that bit of wisdom on to my kids. I hope my father is proud that I’m saving the world from unnecessary or premature maintenance tasks, one power window switch at a time.

    • 0 avatar
      bryanska

      This is why I hate people that use the handicap button to open a door. When it breaks, it will be because it was used up. On the day it breaks, a handicap person might actually need to use it.

      • 0 avatar
        dtremit

        It always feels like the mechanism is going to break when you push those doors manually, though, doesn’t it?

        That being said, having found electrically operated doors very helpful for a time after a knee injury — the switch always is the first thing to break. So I guess it’s moot.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    From my first boss, who was an old Scot off the boat (insert brogue as needed):

    “Son, some people get 40 years’ experience, and some people experience their first year 40 times.”

  • avatar
    Waftable Torque

    I never got this advice, but I’m going to give it to my kids.

    If there’s traffic and you see an upcoming sign where the right lane has to merge into the left lane, always be in the right-hand lane. People will always eventually let you in, sometimes you’ll spot a break, and sometimes you can douchebag your way in by cutting in front.

    In any case, you want to be frustrated? Always stay in the left lane while people like me get in front of them. It’s a metaphor for doing what’s uncomfortable in life, so you can have what those who stay in their comfort zone can’t.

    • 0 avatar
      frozenman

      You are correct, I always move up and “close the zipper”. Most drivers are too timid/unaware or lacking in confidence to pull it off.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      I call that using the damned merge lane…it’s there for a reason!

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      I’ve been in actual fistfights and about 10 road rage incidents over this situation.

    • 0 avatar
      ihatetrees

      That’s Ok advice – just prepare to stop cold or cause an accident when people (like me 90% of the time) are rock solid in not yielding when having the right-of-way.

      • 0 avatar
        Chan

        The idea is that in a zipper merge, neither the left lane nor the right lane has the right of way. People entering tend to cut over as soon as they can to get back into their “comfort zone”, causing the main travel lane to back up due to the early, low-speed merge.

        This is when I zoom past, use the merge to actually gain the speed to match the main travel lanes, and follow the actual design of the merge lane. Going too far and stepping onto the shoulder to get ahead of one or two more cars would be the realm of the douche. A driver from the main travel lanes cutting over into the merge lane to gain an advantage is also a douche.

      • 0 avatar
        frozenman

        That’s fine, just remember if you hit the side of my car with the front of yours at a merge point, the fault is yours.

        • 0 avatar
          Chan

          I’ve actually been free of fault in a rear-end collision (me at the rear), but that is an anomaly and basically requires some sort of admission from the other party. Few people are that honest.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      We have signs at our construction zones telling people to use both lanes and zipper merge now. They started doing that a year or two ago.

  • avatar
    Waftable Torque

    Another advice I’d give anyone who lives with winter conditions and doesn’t have a heated garage is to own a car warmer. Not a block heater, which heats the coolant, but a car warmer that warms the interior of the car. Put a timer on it so it kicks in an hour or two before you need it.

    I used to have them installed in all my cars and it was a toasty +10C inside while it was -26C outside. Windows were clear even during snowfall, and there was enough latent heat to keep the car warm until the climate system was warm enough to pump heat into the cabin.

    Unfortunately, hardly anyone makes a good unit anymore. The ones I had from the 70’s were made by Temro and had either mechanical timers or a battery trickle charger through the cigarette lighter. I’ve read dreadful reviews of the disposable ones sold by Canadian Tire in the last decade.

  • avatar
    Advance_92

    My father refused to be involved with my drivers education claiming I’d pick up all his bad habits, as if ten years of weekend road trips looking for speed traps didn’t give me an opportunity. I was allowed to practice with one of the cars since the class only used automatics, but that was it. The one piece of advice I got was to never put myself in a position where I’d need to panic stop, and never put anyone else in a position where they would have to panic stop. It’s worked pretty well so far.

  • avatar
    threeer

    Always check your rear-view mirror…

  • avatar
    Messerschmitten

    My Dad took me out for driving lessons when I was first able to see over the dash and reach the pedals (at about age 7). Since I had to be out of school and he had to be off work, these lessons usually took place when there was enough ice and snow on the ground to shut down the community.

    By the time I was about 13, we had a used (but beautiful) 1966 Olds Toronado. As you all know, the Toro is a big, heavy car, with most of that weight resting on its front wheels. Using snow and rocks, Dad had set up a slalom and various other obstacles around a (snow-day closed) school parking lot. He then had me negotiate the slalom and stops (in the ice and show) both in Drive and in Reverse, at increasing speeds.

    On a Reverse run (moving at a pretty good clip), he casually asked “What would happen if the engine died?” and immediately reached over and switched off the ignition … in a Toronado, a car whose drivability *really* depended upon functioning power steering and power brakes. My little 13-year-old muscles were suddenly working as hard as they could.

    Thanks, Dad, for inducing everlasting motoring paranoia.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    “You can buy your sports car when you’re 25, or when you’re 50. [Assuming you’re going to have a family] it’s tough to buy one in between. Decide accordingly.”

    “If you ever sell that car [sports car], you’ll always look back on the day you sold it as the day you officially got old.”

    • 0 avatar
      Quentin

      I drove a sedan, hatchback, SUV, and station wagon from 20 until I turned 32. Then I bought a sports car. I became a father at 30. It isn’t that difficult as long as your spouse has a vehicle that can haul everyone. Had I a chance to do it again, I’d have purchased an S2000 instead of the MKV GTI when I got my first real job at 23.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      I had a close call. I sold my Cayman just prior to my kid being born, planning to buy its replacement within the same year (we had already bought a relatively roomy family car in advance). I am thankful that I had the determination, the resources and the support to make good on that plan.

      I just need to find more time to drive the darned thing.

  • avatar
    TW5

    People of my parents’ generation have given me nothing but bad advice, and they are not bashful about running their mouths. Have everything. Own nothing. Pay other people to do your chores. Obsess about your income. Get rich quick. Leverage makes the world go ’round. Typical yuppie-boomer nonsense about the convenience lifestyle and flaunting your income via conspicuous consumption.

    My grandparents rarely gave me any advice, but they led by example. They worked hard and stayed out of debt. If they wanted to impress someone, they didn’t flaunt bank-owned property. They did not try to consume fake life experiences. My grandparents experienced many tragedies and triumphs, which created personas that were as indelible and uncompromising as the Rocky Mountains or the Grand Canyon.

    My grandparents taught me a lot about cars, too. My paternal grandparents taught me the value of a good Buick sedan on open roads in Texas. My maternal grandfather was badly wounded in WWII. He had to drive left-footed and rest his right leg under the center console. He taught me that FWD vehicles don’t have a transmission tunnel. My maternal grandmother lived deep in the Smokey Mountains, and she taught me that Japanese cars are the best way to save gas and maintenance expense.

    My grandparents had life skills, too. My paternal grandfather was a master gardener. His back yard was always a bounty of food and flowers. He knew how to raise stock too, but HOA. My paternal grandmother was a concert pianist who was also an incredible cook. She played at church, parties, and local holiday events. My maternal grandfather was a civil engineer who could fix ANYTHING and build most things, as well. My maternal grandmother was a triage nurse, and she maintained the 40 acre plot that had been in her family since Andrew Jackson was president. She had a shed full of tools that would make most men feel inadequate.

    Actions speak louder than words. That’s the only advice you need to know.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    My old man taught me about cars rather obliquely. He’d disable the family sedan before he and Mom went down to the cottage for the weekend.

    I’d figure out what was missing, usually the rotor, find it and then drive around all Saturday. I always refilled the gas as exactly as I could but I’m sure he knew all about it from the mileage which I didn’t know how to tamper with.

    Such was the lure of driving at 15 that I kept doing it and he never said anything. I think therein was the life lesson: learn to DIY and let sleeping elephants lie.

  • avatar
    Jezza819

    “Lord loves a working man”

    “Don’t trust whitey”

    “See a doctor and get rid of it”

  • avatar

    This is advice I learned the hard way.

    Having 4wd can make it easier to drive in the snow (or other wet weather conditions). It can’t make you stop any faster. Instead, it can make you feel comfortable driving at a speed where you can’t safely stop.

    I remember the first time I drove my Ford Ranger 4X4 in the snow. It was great. I was speeding through the snow on a curvy stretch of 4-lane road, feeling invincible. And then the light turned red. I ended up somewhere in the middle of the intersection – luckily I didn’t hit anyone or get hit.

  • avatar
    readallover

    1 – Never assume the other driver is going to do the right thing.
    2 – always – ALWAYS use a condom.

  • avatar
    Russycle

    From the California trooper who taught traffic school when I got my first ticket: Leave enough space in front of you and look far enough ahead that you never have to hit your brakes to adjust your speed.

    Of course, I married a chronic tailgater.

  • avatar
    qfrog

    Michelin should stick to making tires and perhaps convincing teens that a Michelin is a better life choice than than some cheap Chinese tires.

  • avatar
    cdotson

    It’s a bit facetious, but more inline with what the target demographic will actually do:

    Go to TTAC and custom search “maximum street speed”

  • avatar
    Lurker_n

    In a GQ interview (around y2k) Anna Kournikova said something along the line of don’t pick your wife, pick your mother-in-law. So wise.

  • avatar
    MeJ

    I have some advice:

    1) To the governments. Make the road test harder!
    It should be done in multiple times/conditions. Rain, Night, Rush hour, Highway. Not a spin around the block, a K-turn and a feeble attempt at parallel parking.

    2)Use your signals. Always. Let the other drivers know what your intentions are.

    3)And for the love of God, stop being a dick and stay out of the fast lane if you’re going slower than everyone else.
    I swear this must be the #1 cause of road rage.

    4)This is the hardest one. Be courteous. We all have somewhere to go.

    Peace.

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    If you run behind a car you get exhausted. If you run in front of a car you get tired.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    Mostly learned from experience:

    A Cummins will not get your rear end out of the mud if you only have 2WD.

    If you’re going downhill and your wagon has no brakes, it’s better just to run the yellow even if it does turn red.

    If you think you might bog down or get stuck, don’t do anything that will cause your rig to slow down.

    Length affects how a car rides, but width affects how it drives. (???)

    Parking at the far end of the lot will generally prevent most incidents.

  • avatar
    DaleR

    Never (street drive) at 10/10ths of your actual ability.

  • avatar

    Turn into the skid.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Don’t forget where you came from and watch out for fast women. – Dad

    Oh wait you meant on the road advice…

  • avatar

    Don’t impulse-buy obscure Italian-American SUV’s off eBay just because you thought they were cool when you were 9.

  • avatar
    VolandoBajo

    Carwise: AWD is very helpful in snow when accelerating or going steady speeds, not so much on ice, unless the patch is small enough that some of the wheels are on better ground the whole time. Stopping, AWD is no better than 2WD. Drive accordingly. And always plan for the other driver possibly doing something stupid or unexpected, and plan in advance your possible evasive moves. Also, whenever possible, on highways especially, break out of a platoon of cars, and settle down in between two platoons of cars, with lots of room in front and back. And always keep track of cars behind you, especially if they are gaining on you. Always snap your head around for a split second to look out the rear window before switching to a lane on your right, no matter how well aimed your mirrors are. Don’t be too cool to wear a seat belt, at least when traffic is heavy or conditions are bad. Always check oil and coolant before and after a road trip. Steer into a skid (the clumsiest kid in my crowd was driving a bunch of us in a big American convertible boatmobile, on a high crown road, when a car coming the other way drifted. He went off onto the shoulder and started to skid when he came back on. He had an older sister who had an Austin Healy 3000-6, and who had taught him how to drive. I never would have thought that he would know to steer into a skid, but he did, and saved the thing from rolling over onto all of us.

    Relationship-wise: thinking you are quite the stud because you have two women in your life at the same time is the stupidest error you can make. Instead, you have more than twice the problems, you will likely end up losing them both in the end, and at least one of them probably has a hidden agenda unrelated to the big stud you think you are.

    This is not preaching from an abstract view of morality. This is from a hard learned life lesson. Fortunately, I had not yet met the love of my life when I was young and apparently so smart that I didn’t believe I could be that stupid.

    If concentrating on your relationship with the best woman in your life isn’t a satisfying option, at many levels, then it is time to move on and keep searching. Or to start fixing what is broke.

    I used to always keep my eye open for additional opportunities, or a chance to jump ship to a better setup, until I met the woman who was so much more than what I even thought existed in real life, much less existed in my real life, at which point my whole attitude changed, not out of fear of consequences, but because of the totality of what I was suddenly absorbed in.

    If you have it, honor it and cherish it (and her) and work on it every day. If you don’t, I hope you find it.

    As David Foster Wallace said at the end his 2005 commencement address at Kenyon, “I wish you so much more than luck.” To any and all of you to whom this may be applicable.

    I had a lot of fun when I was being a dog, but also hurt some people and got hurt myself. Being in an all-consuming relationship is much scarier, because the potential for hurt is so much greater. But when and if it arrives, and if it is the real deal, it becomes the only game in town, and everything else was just cutting the cards to kill time.

    Or in short, always aim high, and if you end up there, hang on and do all you can to stay there. Quality beats quantity, though young men tend not to believe this. I know I didn’t when I was younger.

    My mentor during my teen years, who taught me to box, and gave me a lot of good advice about the Marine Corps, also warned me that if I spent a lot of time being a whorehopper, I would end up missing out on good opportunities I would never know that I could have had. I thought he was just preaching about the importance of settling down, as he was a few years older. But over time, I came to understand that if you aim low, you will get a lot of bottom feeders, but it won’t be that satisfying for that long.

    When he finally married, even though his face looked like a five pound package of hamburger from all the boxing he had done, he ended up with a beautiful and intelligent wife, and they were married almost literally forever. So I think it was good advice that I just wasn’t ready for yet at sixteen or seventeen. But it resonated a couple of decades later, when it became time to decide which way I wanted to go with the rest of my life. Thank you, Paul, wherever you are.

    The funny thing about best advice is how easy it is to not recognize it at the time you receive it, but instead only in retrospect, down the line, when you see what is going on around you.

  • avatar
    pb35

    When I was a kid, I was riding with my dad and newly licensed sister. She was driving and dad told her “stay out of the left lane unless you’re passing.” Thanks, dad.

    Second piece, I was about 20, driving my brand new ’87 Mustang GT with four friends in the car, one of which was my best friends older sister. I merged onto the LIE and ran vigorously through the gears till I hit about 85. When we stopped, my buddy’s sister gave me a stern talking to about how I shouldn’t drive like that with people in the car. Lesson learned and I never did it again. Thanks, Elise.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    As usual ;

    The comments are far better than the original article and it was good .

    -Nate

  • avatar
    WildcatMatt

    “Son, you ain’t cocky if you can do ‘er.”

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