Photo: Jon Bilous/Shutterstock

20 Signs You Learned to Drive in LA

Los Angeles
by Alice Ford Oct 5, 2016

For tourists the thought of driving in the City of Angels can be a terrifying thought. Something that brings on heart palpitations, sweaty palms, and terror at the thought of 12 lanes of traffic.

But for locals the traffic jams, car horns and close calls with motorbikes are just part of your everyday. If you grew up in Los Angeles or came here at an early age, you probably have some interesting quirks and habits from driving in this very car-centric city.

1. You probably don’t think headlights are that important because you’ve never seen a road without street lights.

2. Everyone thinks Angelinos are afraid of the rain, but oil on the road really does make it slippery….. well, maybe we are afraid.

3. Your form of courtesy is not flipping the person you just cut off the bird.

4. You always double the amount of time you think it will take you to get somewhere, because even if you are on time, you still need to park.

5. One time you took the bus to be green. And your friends asked “Oh my gosh, did something happen to your car?”

6. You study the parking signs like it’s the SAT and set timers on your phone for your parking meter, because half the money you made at your first job went to parking tickets.

7. 10 miles in less than 4o minutes is like the equivalent of taking the Concorde from London to New York.

8. You’re not really sure what a turn signal is used for, but you know you have one.

9. You have several traffic APPS on your phone- SIG Alert, Waze, Google Traffic and are constantly checking to see what the fastest route is.

10. You know you learned how to parallel park, but you’ve never really used it.

11. You have no idea why a sign would say chains required or what it means.

12. Traffic time is more like social media time and you use it to catch up on Snaps, IG, Twitter and FB, but you should really STOP. No, seriously, STOP. (The most common cause for accidents is because people are talking, texting or looking at their phones.)

13. You’re addicted to talking about MPG and the gas prices especially to out of towners.

14. You’re not really sure what a toll booth is but you’ve seen them in movies.

15. Yellow lights mean either speed up, or hurry up and turn left, not slow down.

16. You never wait for a window when changing lanes and know that hesitation can mean the difference between a 1-hour and 2-hour commute.

17. The only thing worse than going to the Valley is driving to the South Bay at 5pm.

18. You have seen several high speed roll overs on the freeway, and they weren’t in a movie.

19. When planning appointments, you schedule them not around work or school but around traffic times.

20. Late for school, late for work, late for a date. The excuse that never lets you down: The 405.

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