Friday, March 20, 2009

I am right, am I not?

Conversation with my husband as I zip through Milan's periferia in my small black Italian car:

Him: Whoa! You almost hit the guy on the motorbike.

Me: Well, of course I almost hit him. He pulled out in front of me! I'm driving the correct speed limit and he's driving almost double that. And had the audacity to cut me off. I was in the right.

Him: But you should have slowed down. It's not about right or wrong.

Me: It is about right or wrong. I was right and I had the right of way.

Him: Would it have been right to kill him?

Me: Cazzi suoi (that's his own damn problem). Maybe he had a death wish.

Him: It's about common sense...

Me: Of which the motorbiker obviously had none.

My husband goes silent. A silence that says "There's no way I'm going to win this one with her so it's better if I just shut up."

The next day as I drive along the same road, I'm alone. On the morning radio show they are talking about how the pope has recently said it isn't right to have sex before marriage. One of the hosts of the radio show (an American woman) says something like "Right or wrong? Who is it that makes the rules on what is right or wrong?"

Damn straight!, I think.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

OK, so according to my experience with Sicilian logic driving rules, you are in the right. The reason for that is that you, in a car (albeit a small one), are a bigger vehicle than the scooter. So the scooter should give way as they stand to have the biggest risk in an accident. Of course they probably knew that, which is why they were going a million miles and hour, to get well in front of you..... I never realised the extent of this 'give way rule' until one day while driving my husband's landrover when miraculously everyone gave way to me! Vanessa (regular driver of a small silver car).

Saretta said...

Wait...so YOU're the American and your HUSBAND is the Italian? I love that conversation! I, too, have become an Italian-style driver since living here! I drive with the "get the $%&/* out of my way fool" attitude. LOL!

Btw, like your blog and am putting a link to it on mine, ok?

J.Doe said...

If you did take your husband's advice and slow down to let the motorbike driving cretin have more space in front of you the car in back of you would have driven into your car.
I think you were right.

jcrglobalcaplaw said...

I commute between Los Angeles and Milano and I ride a bike on those Milano streets.

We are seeing something of a groundswell of people re-examining the importance of being right. The saying going around is "Being right is over-rated."

I see this in my marriage because there (as in driving) it is often a zero-sum situation: One person has to be wrong for the other to be right. Is it worth it? Why can't we get to the point where we each see and respect the oother person's point? (Thank God for my wife: She agrees.)

On the streets, being right may be the same thing, so think of my situation. I may have made an error or I may be avoiding the consequences of someone else's error and so getting in the way of your being right. "Error correction" has a ripple effect: Everyone has to correct for another person's error to make a system work.

Besides, do you REALLY want to deal with the paperwork of the Milano police system? Take a tour of the system with me (my wife is a lawyer there and I am a lawyer here) and you'll think about yielding next time--without giving up the claim of being right!

Chia of Bologna said...

Which small black Italian car?
:)

Michellanea said...

Hey everyone,
I was actually making fun of myself (feeling I was so "right" one day and then bristling at the pope trying to tell me what was right and wrong...) not truly wondering if I was in the right. Truth be told, I was probably wrong.

Saretta,
Yes, I'm American and my husband is Italian. I clicked through to your blogs, but you have several. Which is the one you post on most often? I'll give you a link as well!

Chia,
Mi sono eco-incentivata!!! Ho preso una Lancia Ypsilon. Bella. :)

Chia of Bologna said...

mhhm not bad...hope it was a 500 like mine, but can't complain about your choice...goditela!:)