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Monday, January 19, 2015

How do we block these blockers?

There are blockers in the world. They consider blocking to be their prime directive. [Yes the blocking irony wrapped up in this Star Trek term has certainly occurred to me.] Consider...the light turns yellow and the driver in front of you stops. You are aware that not only could he have gone through the yellow, but you as well could also have gone through. But he stopped! Consider further...he actually slowed down as he approached the intersection. He was aware that the green light might turn yellow, and he wanted to be in a position where he could successfully and safely stop should the green light turn yellow. He approached the intersection with the intention of stopping if that possibility became actualized.

There is actually a term for these sorts of people. They're called marplots. Now we could spend years of time and forests of paper theorizing why they are the way they are and why they do what they do, but, honesty, I don't think that's necessary. All that is actually required to solve the problem they present, is first to accept that they do exist, and then come up with a workable plan to block their intransigent blocking.

Blockers are at their most self-evident while driving. That's their milieu. The rules of the road combined with it's inherent narrowness, combine to provide them with blocking power that is all out of proportion to their economic and/or political position. There are of course many other kinds of blockers. There are blockers who use their influence with the boss or with investors to sidetrack or veto every one of your great ideas. There are blockers who use their 'friend' status to sideline or overrule your amorous nightclub undertaking. (Cock-blockers) And then there are the ones who drive 50 mph in the left lane of a six lane highway during rush-hour.

I'll take the possibilities of stopping blockers in the order they first occur to me:
  • Kill them. Shoot them, blow them up, stab them, strangle, suffocate, poison, lure into deep pits or horrific crushing deadfalls. The basic problem with all of these simplest of solutions is that enacting any one of them would—in all likelihood—see you in prison. If a blocker could block you with actual prison bars think how awesome that will make them feel! They will have achieved the proverbial acme of their otherwise absolutely pointless existence. You'll be in prison and will never again be in a position to win whatever race it is that you were competing in, complete whatever task you were trying to complete, or simply arrive at your destination on time. Career over. Marriage over, Parenthood over. Life over. They will have blocked you for good and all. Even if dead, the blocker will have won.
  • Hire someone else to block them from blocking you. While this idea sound reasonable and workable, in most cases it's not possible. Take the driving on the road blockers for example. In order to employ blocker blockers, you'd first need to identify and research the history, lifestyle, schedule, and whereabouts of every blocker on the road that you normally travel on, both going to and coming from work. This isn't even remotely possible, although it does give me an idea...
  • Join a consortium of those dedicated to blocking the blockers. I understand. It does seem self-contradictory and somewhat hypocritical to decide that someone's raison d'etre—i.e. blocking—should be systematically and ruthlessly foiled using the organizational power and funding of a large group of anti-blocker advocates. Nevertheless, I believe the ends justify the means.
It seems to me that the first order of business is a name for this club. I have an idea but I'm certainly open to suggestions. Have you ever heard the old saw about the irresistible force meeting the immovable object? Well, if what we're after is removing immovable objects from our path then the name of the club is inevitable. Welcome to Irresistible Force, a club devoted to sidetracking, stymieing, and stifling the blockers of the world. In a perfect world, all the blockers would be busy blocking each other in the far right lane, while traffic moved unimpeded to their left.

How will this club perform it's noteworthy task? Simply by dedicating themselves to blocking the blockers. Okay, here's where we separate the men from the boys as they say. There are men and then there are cowards. Which group will you sort into? Are you can do or no can do? The way to block the blockers will take teamwork and occationally require taking one for the team. The steps I've imagined are listed below but as with the organization name, I'm certainly open to suggestions. Additionally, if anybody likes this idea and wants to get it started, I'm all ears. Without further ado here are some steps to block the traffic blockers:
  1. Identify a blocker.
  2. Record the license plate, make, and model of his/her car.
  3. Enter this information into a national blocker database.
  4. Describe the method this blocker used to block and its effectiveness.
  5. The elected board of blocker review will evaluate the information entered by members, and offer a bounty for sanctions provided. Blockers will have been noted by multiple group members with the number of similar entries used to evaluate the severity of the blocker as well as the severity of the required sanction.
  6. Severity of sanction will be graduated and necessarily riskier. These might range from holding up a sign: "Idiot you're blocking traffic!" to following the blocker to his parking spot and letting all the air out of his tires.
  7. Successful and powerful public relations are the key to success—just like in business. If the public is made aware that there is a countervailing force for good which is meant to combat the intransigent and completely unnecessary evil that these blockers represent, then the Irresistible Force Network could receive both donations and new membership. The larger we become, the more powerful we become. Facebook, Twitter, a webpage, a board of directors, a fundraising team, and a superpac are obvious just to start with.
  8. I know this sounds like pie in the sky, moonbeans, and Big Rock Candy Mountain, but one day ... I envision a world where speed-limit minimums are enforced as assiduously as maximums. Where left lanes are reserved for passing, and where people are ticketed for stopping on yellow.
I want to end this post by describing some simple rules and observations that—if followed—would make driving both safer, and more enjoyable for everyone on the road. First and to my mind most important: Red light means stop. Green light means go. Yellow light means go very fast!

Second, the left lane is meant for passing. While that seems simple enough, the corollary to that rule is simply this: if somebody is tailgating you move right. If you're already in the rightmost lane and they're still tailgating, then the middle-finger salute is in order.

Finally, whether you were aware of it or not, it actually is possible to tell when the crossing lane traffic gets its yellow and then red light. Related directly to this fact, the following is a great tip ... When the crossing lane traffic light is red, YOUR OWN LIGHT IS ABOUT TO TURN GREEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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