This is one thing which i didn’t want to write about, as I had already read a similar topic on someone else’s blog and I didn’t want to be “inspired” by it. But every time i hear the honk, i just couldn’t resist my urge to write this. So here i am ranting away.
I believe, horn is one of the many inventions of man which is being misused, just like the nuclear energy. Nuclear energy, is useful when it is used in the production of Electricity. It was one of the main uses which was thought of after the discovery of nuclear energy. But the “destructive” mind of humans thought of a much better way to make use of it. Nuclear Bombs or warheads. Prepare it and u have the bargaining power in all international relations which u have.
But these horns are worse than nuclear energy. The main use of nuclear energy is still in production of electricity, but these horns i believe are not used for the main reason which they were designed for.
Horns are primarily designed to be used minimally, just to intimate a slower vehicle that you want to overtake them or just before a blind turn to make sure that any person/vehicle coming from there knows that some vehicle is approaching. But now, horn is the most used part in any vehicle. People have found more innovative/irritating ways to use the horn.
Some of the situations where i find no use in honking are :
1. You are standing in the traffic signal and assume u are at the front. Now, i can bet my right arm and leg. There will be vehicles behind you honking. Now for god sake what do they expect me to do?? Jump the signal to make sure they come and stop in the front of the queue.
2. Again, standing in a traffic signal, but stuck in the middle, right behind a huge bus. This guy in a new imported SUV comes up behind and he finds it amusing to just bang his horn down. OK dude, everyone noticed u have an imported SUV. Now take your hand off that damn Horn.
3. The traffic is slow moving. This guy in a bike comes up riding a triple( three people on that bike). Now he wants the right to way. He just goes on honking away to glory. Great, just because he has 3 people on his bike he needs the privilege of a fire engine or an ambulance. Where do want the guy ahead of u to move?
4. This is one of my personal experiences. I am standing, waiting for a right turn. I am right at the center of the road, with onward traffic whizzing past me just 2 centimeters to the right of me. This chap in a car comes up right behind me and starts honking. I turn back and ask what he wants. He wants to go straight ahead. Goddamn, then why did u have to come towards the center of the road. Haven’t i left the 40 mts on my left for u to go on.
5. Then there are people who have this annoying habit of honking even when the traffic is smooth flowing. Most of the time they will be moving slower than the rest of the traffic, but they need to keep honking every 10 seconds. May be they are just honking to the beat of the music they are listening. I have seen this habit in people who are driving a four-wheeler or a lady two-wheeler driver. The guys on two-wheeler, usually will be honking continuously. So, there will be no 10 seconds gap there.
6. OK, this is the funny type and the most annoying one. They need to take the right turn 10 mts ahead and they are on the left side of the road. So what do they do??? 5 mts from the right turn, jam the horn in and just keep moving to the right. No indicator. Who wants an indicator, when u have a horn. Its ur fundamental right to be given way, coz u are honking and thus u have inherited the role of ambulance. You need to be given the way.
I have my own ways of dealing with this and this keeps changing. Earlier, i just used to give way to the person who is honking irritably. “Just get rid of the annoyance” was the motto.That was the first phase. But it didn’t work, coz the person behind him now wanted to be given the equal treatment or else he’ll start the honking.
In the second phase, i used to give way to him, and then go right behind him and start honking, just the way he used to do. This is what i call “Reap what u sow”. U honked irritably behind me, now u get it back. Letz see how u feel. After a few days i started feeling extremely irritable and my mood used to be bad, right in the morning. So i moved to the third phase.
This is the most difficult phase. I just ignore the fact that there is some one behind me honking away to glory. I just refuse to budge and won’t give way. You can go on honking, i am not going to give you the way. This is extremely difficult in the beginning. How much ever, i tried to ignore, i used to get irritated from the incessant honking. I had the urges to move back to phase two and start it all over again. But some how i remain here.
When i bought a new mobile, lifeline came in the form of hands free and FM Radio. Now before starting the journey, i plug it in and switch on the radio. This doesn’t remove the sound completely, but it minimises it. There are many advantages, i obtained of this.
1. Instead of the honking, i now listen to great music all the way.
2. My alertness increased. Coz i need to keep looking into my rear-view mirror to see, if someone is trying to overtake me or if i need to give way to anything else. This just increases ur awareness of the surrounding and my reflexes sort of increased.
3. I won’t be in a bad mood, right at the start of the day. This helps me at work.
I usually keep experimenting sometimes to go the whole week, without honking. And i must say i am successful. Now that doesn’t mean, i won’t honk at all. You do need to honk. But i honk just at the required time. Like, if i am about to take a blind turn, or if i find an empty auto(now that is the only thing which i find going really slow. Sometimes at the speed of 10-15kmph when the whole traffic is moving at 30-40), to tell him that i am about to overtake him.
But the first thing is, we Indians don’t have a traffic sense. We need to learn to move at the speed of the traffic. That means, if the whole traffic is moving at the speed of 40 kmph, move with that speed. Just because u have a 150 cc bike and u have ur girlfriend behind, it doesn’t give u a right to move at 80 kmph and honk away to glory.
Follow lane system. I know there are no lanes here. But at the least, follow the minimum rules. That is if u have to take a left turn, move ur vehicle to the left and move there much before the left turn. Ditto for the right, if it is a one way road, move to the right much before ur right turn. Or if it is a 2 way road, move to the center of the road. And if u want to move on straight, please keep to the center of the road and leave the left and the right center to vehicles who need to learn.
But before all these, just learn to keep ur hands off that horn. It should be just used to warn others and not to irritate them.