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Use Your Cell Phone While Driving

Updated on May 7, 2016
Are you a distracted driver?
Are you a distracted driver? | Source

Have you heard all those horror stories of people having terrible mishaps because they were using their cell phone while driving? Worried about new state laws being passed to ban the practice? Worry not, here's how to fearlessly use your cell phone while driving.

The first thing to do when you enter your car with cell phone in hand, is look around. If you should happen to see a toddler in a car seat there in the back, or any other young child bouncing on the seat or playing with the windows or kicking his sister or biting the dog, ready to go for a ride, simply take your cell phone, turn it to games, and hand it to any nearby youngster. (If you have forgotten, or oh-so-typically-you, have never even figured out how to switch your phone over to games, just consult the nearest available teenager.) Now you can settle into the driver's seat, hit the ignition, back out of your drive, and cruise away, all the while knowing that you just bought yourself 20 minutes of relative quiet time as your kid racks up Coca-Cola Prize Points, and your boss can't possibly reach you. (An added benefit: you'll come to understand your cell phone bill a WHOLE lot better when it arrives next month.)

If perchance the youngster(s) you see when you glance about the car should be tweens or teens, then don't even bother to switch your cell phone over to games (however, you WILL want to disable long distance calling, if you can). Just leave your phone in phone mode, hand it to the owner of the nearest sullen face, and get ready to turn up your radio to top volume on that classic rock station you like so much. Don't worry, teens and younger teen-wannabes are perfectly capable of holding sort-of-coherent phone conversations in teen-speak while passing air raid sirens, jackhammers, Boeing 737s at peak acceleration, and other yammering teens, so you singing along to Chicago's '25 or 6 to 4' isn't going to disturb them one little bit. (Two added benefits here: first, you'll be amused (I hope) at the new welcome screen you'll have when you next turn on your phone, and second, though you'll get tagged later for the phone charges, you might get away without stopping for sub sandwiches, pizzas, caramel bubblegum frappuccino mocha lattes, and the mall every few blocks.)

Should you be traveling with spouse or sweetheart, just hand the phone over to your significant (oh, alright — even your INsignificant) other, and let him or her do all the talking on this trip. Hey, it'll save the wear and tear on your eardrums, and it might just keep you un-distracted enough that you won't miss the off-ramp like last time, when you two were discussing something IMPORTANT (like whether or not to return that $2.59 foot powder that was supposed to be on special, but that you got charged full price for). (Yep, there's an added benefit here, too! The next time you hear 'You never listen to me . . .', you can calmly answer, 'Yes, I do. How about between mile markers 7 and 214?' Then, duck!)

If you happen to be traveling alone, you need to be equally creative in how you use your cell phone while driving. Men, I would suggest that you turn your cell phone off, and wedge it into the rear back pants pocket opposite the one in which you keep your wallet. Even if your cell phone is one of those new-fangled super-skinny types, its thickness will help a little bit to offset that bloated wad of smelly leather, faded receipts, ragged singles, pictures of your cousin Lenny mooning some nuns, losing Lotto tickets, memorial 19th-birthday condom, and other crap you jam into your other pocket. You'll sit a little closer to level, making navigating turns quite a bit easier, and maybe that numbness will finally depart your other butt cheek. Ladies, I recommend turning off your cell phone, then bravely rustling it deep into the bowels of that patterned vinyl shopping bag you call a purse. I know, I know, it's scary in there, and there may be things that bite, but you need to get that phone down deep, beyond ready reach, or you will have defeated our whole purpose here. Besides, anything that causes your compact mirror or your house keys to bob a bit higher among all that flotsam can't be all bad, can it?

Finally, perhaps the best way to use your cell phone while driving is to turn it off, then affix it squarely to the center of your car windshield with duct tape, preferably red duct tape. That way, no matter what should happen on the roadways, nor what kind of vehicular calamity you find yourself at the crumpled, smoking, gasoline-and-burnt-rubber-smelling, glass-tinkled center of, you can proudly point to your adhered flip-phone, and say to all surrounding drivers and to that rather grumpy-looking state trooper towering over you, "I wasn't on my cell phone! I was paying attention to my driving!"

Now all of us at rickzworld are proud of you.

Eyes on the road! by rlz
Eyes on the road! by rlz

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    • rickzimmerman profile imageAUTHOR

      rickzimmerman 

      8 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Ken: The only problem with an improved hands-free environment in cars is that it appears even hands-free talking on phone calls is distracting enough to lead to some very serious accidents. I'm not sure what the solution is. (Perhaps 21st Century humans need to evolve a spare brain annex for safe multi-tasking — phone conversations while driving, texting while eating soup, paying attention to the spouse after the 2-min. warning, dealing with more than one teenager at a time, walking and chewing gum, etc.) — Rick

    • profile image

      Ken Dawson 

      8 years ago

      I can see answering a call in the car. I have a problem with people who get so preoccupied with it to the point where their driving becomes erratic. We need to have a better hands free environment for phones in cars.

      Ken

    • rickzimmerman profile imageAUTHOR

      rickzimmerman 

      8 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Chef Jeff: Unfortunately, I now have to keep my cell phone on and on me at all times (to drum up the seemingly non-existent work, respond to a daughter at college, and report to the wife). But I quit each call quickly, and get off the road for a call-back. Life's too fragile to chance it. — Regards, Rick

    • Chef Jeff profile image

      Chef Jeff 

      8 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

      I decided when I got a cell phone I would treat it exactly as I did my old home phone - I ignore it if I am doing something else. I decided NOT to allow a phone call rule my life. Thus, I turn the darned thing off when I get into my car!

      Cheers!

      Chef Jeff

    • stars439 profile image

      stars439 

      8 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

      I know the feelings. God Bless

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