He Nearly Modem Down

He Nearly Modem Down

It is a monumental week in the history of Grimley Towers. After living with the restrictive shackles of cables and wiring our interweb service has been cut free and moved into the wonderful world of wireless. While I accept this isn’t exactly a giant technological leap in terms of mankind, for a man like myself who is perplexed by anything that can’t be operated, modified or fixed by the judicious application of a hammer, it is nothing short of a revolution.

Take for instance the process of writing this article, which is usually conducted locked in the study with a foaming ale and the glow of a monitor for company. Now my horizons have been expanded as far as the rabbit ears on the back of my new fandangled modem deign to throw out the world wide web. So rather than be limited to the distance that my gangly arms will still reach the keyboard, I can now roam and type with gay abandon.

For no other reason than simply because I can this sentence is being written from my driveway, perched on the bonnet of my decrepit Mercedes. And now, thanks to the onset of early evening rain, I have retired to the sofa to enjoy the Best of Top Gear where the trio of man-children are cavorting in some heavily choreographed automotive slapstick involving tractors.

It seems that technology has a lot to answer for.

I doubt for one moment that any of you decided to surf your way to the Car & SUV website in the hope that I would regale you of my televisual viewing habits. At very least I suspect you would be hoping for a bit of vaguely erudite, semi-informed commentary on a motoring related matter. But unfortunately technology can be a bit of a distraction, particularly when whatever else you’re meant to be doing isn’t quite as interesting.

And while that might mean an irritating plunge in literary standards for you, the dedicated Car & SUV readership who are currently playing second fiddle to a particularly fascinating Subaru Legacy on TradeMe, in other circumstances the consequences can be entirely more serious.

Take the moron in the Toyota Landcruiser on SH1 earlier today who was too busy texting to notice I was overtaking when he decided to change lanes. Even though the horn and brake were jumped on with considerable vigour, I’m still not entirely sure how a collision was averted.

And it can’t be written off as an isolated incident either. Earlier in the week I stopped at a pedestrian crossing in Mt Wellington and a Mazda6 coming the other way drove straight through, narrowly missing the fast-reflexed workman who was crossing. I blame the Mazda6 entirely, as the numbskull in the drivers’ seat was far too busy with a smart phone to have any say on the speed or direction of travel.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; driving a modern motor car is far too easy. It is not a smart idea to unleash a person in a tonne or more of high powered killing machine if it leaves them enough resources to simultaneously do their make-up or update Facebook.

But I doubt it will do the revenue of any given major motor manufacturer much good if they re-jig their range so it cannot be driven by anyone with an IQ of less than 120. Therefore it’s up to us – the motorists – to recognise that with the right to drive comes the responsibility to do so free from any self-imposed distractions.

Because I can almost guarantee that the next time your phone rings when you’re driving it won’t be a matter of life and death. Unless you choose to answer it.

It is a monumental week in the history of Grimley Towers. After living with the restrictive shackles of cables and wiring our interweb service has been cut free and moved into the wonderful world of wireless. While I accept this isn’t exactly a giant technological leap in terms of mankind, for a man like myself who is perplexed by anything that can’t be operated, modified or fixed by the judicious application of a hammer, it is nothing short of a revolution.

Take for instance the process of writing this article, which is usually conducted locked in the study with a foaming ale and the glow of a monitor for company. Now my horizons have been expanded as far as the rabbit ears on the back of my new fandangled modem deign to throw out the world wide web. So rather than be limited to the distance that my gangly arms will still reach the keyboard, I can now roam and type with gay abandon.

For no other reason than simply because I can this sentence is being written from my driveway, perched on the bonnet of my decrepit Mercedes. And now, thanks to the onset of early evening rain, I have retired to the sofa to enjoy the Best of Top Gear where the trio of man-children are cavorting in some heavily choreographed automotive slapstick involving tractors.

It seems that technology has a lot to answer for.

I doubt for one moment that any of you decided to surf your way to the Car & SUV website in the hope that I would regale you of my televisual viewing habits. At very least I suspect you would be hoping for a bit of vaguely erudite, semi-informed commentary on a motoring related matter. But unfortunately technology can be a bit of a distraction, particularly when whatever else you’re meant to be doing isn’t quite as interesting.

And while that might mean an irritating plunge in literary standards for you, the dedicated Car & SUV readership who are currently playing second fiddle to a particularly fascinating Subaru Legacy on TradeMe, in other circumstances the consequences can be entirely more serious.

Take the moron in the Toyota Landcruiser on SH1 earlier today who was too busy texting to notice I was overtaking when he decided to change lanes. Even though the horn and brake were jumped on with considerable vigour, I’m still not entirely sure how a collision was averted.

And it can’t be written off as an isolated incident either. Earlier in the week I stopped at a pedestrian crossing in Mt Wellington and a Mazda6 coming the other way drove straight through, narrowly missing the fast-reflexed workman who was crossing. I blame the Mazda6 entirely, as the numbskull in the drivers’ seat was far too busy with a smart phone to have any say on the speed or direction of travel.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; driving a modern motor car is far too easy. It is not a smart idea to unleash a person in a tonne or more of high powered killing machine if it leaves them enough resources to simultaneously do their make-up or update Facebook.

But I doubt it will do the revenue of any given major motor manufacturer much good if they re-jig their range so it cannot be driven by anyone with an IQ of less than 120. Therefore it’s up to us – the motorists – to recognise that with the right to drive comes the responsibility to do so free from any self-imposed distractions.

Because I can almost guarantee that the next time your phone rings when you’re driving it won’t be a matter of life and death. Unless you choose to answer it.

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