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Presence of proverbs on cars may be tip-off to an angry driver
By Shankar Vedantam | The Washington Post
June 17, 2008

Three horrors await Americans who get behind the wheel of a car for a family road trip this summer: the spiraling price of gas, choruses of "Are we there yet?"—and the road rage of fellow drivers.

Divine intervention might be needed for the first two problems, but science has discovered a solution for the third:

Watch out for cars with bumper stickers.

That's the surprising conclusion of a recent study by Colorado State University social psychologist William Szlemko.

Drivers of cars with bumper stickers, window decals, personalized license plates and other "territorial markers" not only get mad when someone cuts into their lane or is slow to respond to a traffic light, they also are far more likely than others to use their vehicles to express rage —by honking, tailgating and other aggressive behavior.

It doesn't seem to matter whether the stickers are about peace and love—"Visualize World Peace" and "My Kid Is an Honor Student"—or in your face: "Don't Mess With Texas," "My Kid Beat Up Your Honor Student."

Aggressive driving might be responsible for up to two-thirds of all U.S. traffic accidents that involve injuries.

Szlemko and his colleagues at Ft. Collins found that people who personalize their cars acknowledge that they are aggressive drivers but usually don't realize they are reporting much higher levels of aggression than people whose cars lack visible markers on their vehicles.

"The more markers a car has, the more aggressively the person tends to drive when provoked," he said.

The key to the phenomenon apparently lies in the idea of territoriality. Drivers with road rage tend to think of public streets and highways as "my street" and "my lane."

Drivers who individualize their cars see them as deeply personal space, or primary territory, the researchers hypothesized in a recent issue of the Journal of Applied Social Psychology.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-driving-behaviorjun17,0,4469613.story
 

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Discussion Starter #2
"Don't Mess With Texas,"
Doesn't ShipWreck have this one? :lol: :lol:
 

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It tickles me when a gal zooms by me shredding the
speed limit and she has a sign in the rear window saying,
“CAUTION BABY ON BOARD.”
 

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This is an interesting study. I never understood why you would want to put a big ugly sticker of any kind on the outside of your vehicle, especially one that is new or fairly new. Maybe if you drive an old rusty thing it would be ok. I guess I'm part of that passive driver crowd. Ayoob writes in his book the advice that if you're a gun owner, don't put obvious gun stickers on your car, because it invites the thief to follow you home and steal your guns when you aren't there. I have an FN sticker in my window, but nobody even knows what FN is and it's pretty subdued with the tinting. Some folks probably think it's a yankees sticker.
 

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venison-hunter said:
"Don't Mess With Texas,"
Doesn't ShipWreck have this one? :lol: :lol:
I have the "Don't tase me bro" bumpersticker that's in my signature line at the end of every post I make. It's the same sticker.
 

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ShipWreck said:
venison-hunter said:
"Don't Mess With Texas,"
Doesn't ShipWreck have this one? :lol: :lol:
I have the "Don't tase me bro" bumpersticker that's in my signature line at the end of every post I make. It's the same sticker.
No wonder shipwreck has such aggressive posting behavior, it is because of his signature!

 

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Discussion Starter #8
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
 
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