ARE THEY ASIAN OR JUST 80 YEARS OLD? ARE MEN REALLY BETTER DRIVERS?

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We have all experienced the driver who drives to slow in the fast lane and many of us always ask ourselves “are they Asian or old?” Statistically, Asians excel in school greater than any other ethnicity in the U.S., but when Asians get behind the wheel it seems as if they just found themselves in a box of kryptonite hindering their ability to press the pedal on the right. And when you drive past to find it’s an 80 year old Asian behind the wheel most of us, if not already 80 or Asian, shake our head like we just have been diagnosed with a nervous twitch.

While the majority of this post is not entirely related to Asian drivers or 80 year old drivers, it is loosely connected to generalizing groups of drivers. Recently, the city of Triberg, Germany engaged in a publicity stunt featuring “women only” parking spaces and has sparked an international furor. “Gallus Strobel, the mayor of Triberg, Germany introduced “easy” parking spots for women in a public-parking garage that are wider and have better lighting. The 12 spaces are painted with the international symbol for women. Two “men only” spots have concrete pillar hazards and can be accessed only by reversing. The action, which was supposed to increase tourism in the town, has drawn accusations of sexism.” I say nonsense. We all know men prefer to fit in tight spots so this doesn’t surprise me.

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While Triberg was once known best as the home of the world’s biggest cuckoo clock, some think it may now be home to the biggest cuckoo Mayor.

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“Ironically, a recent study out of Britain found that women are better at parking than men. An analysis of drivers across England gave women a score of 13.4 out of 20 compared with 12.3 for men. Parking technique, accuracy and time were evaluated in the study by NCP, a parking-garage company. However, women are slower than men at parking — taking an average of 21 seconds, compared with 16 for men, the study found.” Slow and steady always wins the race.

“The Triberg mayor griped that people who were offended by the female-only parking spots had no sense of humor. He may have gotten the idea from planners in the Chinese city of Tianjin. They recently introduced parking spots that only women are allowed to use. They are generally wider, better lit — and marked with pink paint.” Which begs the questions: 1) Women are really allowed to drive in China? And 2) How big are the cars in China? For a country known for hating giving birth to a female since only one child is allowed per family, it almost shocks me they let females drive. I thought that’s why they immigrate to America…for freedom to drive…and to drive an SUV so that when they crash, not if they crash, they will likely survive while rolling on dubs.

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CAN I BUY ROLLERBLADES WITH A CHECK PLEASE?

In 2005, when I first moved to hell (I mean Oklahoma) the first thing I realized is that Oklahoma was a decade behind the rest of the country. The heat is unbearable & the weather unpredictable in OK, but nothing baffled me more than the fact that people still used rollerblades and wrote checks at the store.

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You could go to any restaurant, eat dinner, and then pay with a check. Having lived in California for 25 years prior to my move to OK, it made no sense to me that this was allowed in OK considering that practice ended in CA circa 1980’s. Over the last 7 years OK has still evolved slower than molasses. Rollerblades have faded out for the most part, but you still see people using them from time to time. Most restaurants no longer accept personal checks, but that doesn’t mean you can’t write a check elsewhere in OK.

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Today, I went to buy a bag of dog food only and as I stood in the one open lane the person ahead of me proceeded to start to write a check to pay for their goods. As the cashier was running the check, the line behind me grew from 3 people to 10. Paying with a check takes ten times longer than paying with cash or a debit/credit card, so my patience started to grow thinner and thinner. The lady behind me who was likely in her 60’s or 70’s started to gripe and as she did so the cashier said “I’m sorry, your check has been declined.”

With only one lane open steam came from my head like a teapot about to prepare tea. The cashier ran the check again, but again to no avail. It took me 2 minutes to grab dog food and stand in line, but now I’ve been in the store for over 15 minutes because some moron decided not to use cash or a card. In replacement of the check, the purchaser attempted to use a card. Why the hell didn’t you use it the first time I thought? But then the card was declined as well. Buying a simple bag of dog food led to a 25 minute standing in line and as I’ve always said, if patience is a virtue then I am not virtuous.  

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The purchaser just wasted my time and my frustration had grown to a tipping point. I paid for my dog food and left, but suggest for those of you who use checks in stores: don’t be “that guy” and piss a whole store of customers off. As for the store, open another damn lane. Why have 25 lanes when only one is open and there are workers all over the place? As Monday Night Football would say, “Come on Man!” This is 2012 not 1982. For goodness sake, make the old guy sitting at the front door saying hello to everyone be useful and learn to use a register.

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IF I COULD BE ANYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD I WOULD BE DAVID BECKHAM – BUT NOT THIS SUMMER…I’D PREFER TO BE RYAN GIGGS

David Beckham has long been a favorite of mine since as long as I can remember. His brilliant free kicks inspired me as a young player to try to reach that same standard. His emotions sometimes get the best of him as we saw in England’s 1998 World Cup match against heated rival Argentina and in a recent match between his current club the L.A. Galaxy and the San Jose Earthquakes. He received red cards in both games for unsportsmanlike conduct to which those who played soccer with me growing up knew I might have gotten in a bit of trouble from time to time as well.

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In the last few years, Beckham spent much of his time campaigning for the Olympic Games to be held in London in 2012. As the Olympics are approaching, many can give credit to Beckham for his involvement in bringing the games to jolly old London. In fact, Beckham was just one of the carriers of the torch for his country which is a huge honor; however, Beckham was left off the Great Britain soccer team roster. Beckham insists he isn’t upset for being left off but admits he would like to have represented his home country in the 2012 Olympics.

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His absence reminds me of a joke I heard in 1998, after his red card against Argentina: What do England and Posh Spice have in common? They’ve both been screwed by Beckham. Karma must have finally come back to haunt Beckham as we can now say England screwed David Beckham back. At the end of the day, if I could be anyone else in the world I would be David Beckham. But, not this summer. He’ll be watching the games as a spectator as much as I will. I’m sure he’ll have much better seats than my couch, but I bet the slap that left him off the roster will be stinging him throughout the entire summer. Fans of Beckham like me feel it too; so here’s to Beckham, but at least we get to see the 40 year old Ryan Giggs in international play for the first time.  

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