Oh Mr Touran Man, do calm down

Last week I witnessed a minor case of road rage on my way into the office. Sadly road rage is an all too common occurrence on Britain’s roads, with some drivers seemingly leaving any degree of courtesy or good nature at home. Assuming that is, that they have any courtesy in the first place.

But this particular incident has become lodged in my mind, so I’m hoping that by recalling the experience here, I can get shot of it once and for all. 

In typical television documentary style, I’ll start by saying that this was a just another typical commute through the city. The first week back at school, so the roads were the busiest they’d been since late July and I’m guessing that some people had been caught out by this.

One particular chap was driving a gleaming white, 60-plate Volkswagen Touran. I followed him through the city on mostly two-lane carriageways, past numerous traffic lights and around a number of traffic lights. The traffic was heavy, but it was moving and we were all heading in the right direction.

But clearly Mr Touran Man was becoming impatient and wished to move quicker than the rest of us. He switched to the nearside lane to see if that would help him get to his desk quicker. He obviously had an important meeting to discuss ordering a new stapler or was desperate to indulge in some pre-work seedy ‘net surfing. Whatever, he was in a hurry.

He therefore wasn’t impressed when a young lady in a Peugeot 207 decided to do the same thing. Seeing a clear space, this young lady checked her mirrors, indicated and moved into the gap in front of Mr Touran Man. Absolutely nothing wrong with the manoeuvre. Unless of course you’re Mr Touran Man, in which case you’re incensed by the move. Despite the Pug displaying a ‘P’ plate on the back, the now raging Mr Touran Man showed no mercy to the hapless young driver.

Cue lots of horn tooting, flashing of lights and naughty words. Fortunately I couldn’t hear his expletives over the sound of Chris Evans, but through lipreading I could tell that he wasn’t wishing the young lady a good day or complimenting her on her blonde locks. This went on for about 10-15 seconds, which doesn’t sound like a huge length of time, but when you count it up in your head it’s quite considerable. For a young lady, alone in her car and with only months of driving experience behind her, it must have felt like an eternity. My heart went out to her.

For the next mile or so, he stayed glued to her rear bumper, his little red and round face filled with rage and hate. What a nasty and unpleasant chap he must be. No wonder he travels everywhere alone in his 7-seat Touran.

The chances of Mr Touran Man reading PetrolBlog are nil to non-existent, but on the off chance that he does, let me say this. What did you hope to gain from your fit of rage? Call it what you like, but this really was a case of David vs. Goliath. Or age vs. youth. Or beauty and the beast. Has your life descended into such misery that you need to take out your frustration on an inexperienced young driver just trying to make her way to work? It’s not big and it’s not clever and anyone who saw you that morning will see you as a nasty, irritable and hateful little man. In that half a minute, you could have given that young girl’s confidence behind the wheel a real hammering. She was noticeably terrified as she looked in her mirror and saw it filled with flashing lights and rage.

Have a think next time, eh? It could be your daughter who’s faced with someone like you one day. And I for one wouldn’t wish that on anyone.

Alternatively, have you thought about taking up a relaxing hobby? Crochet? Knitting? Fly fishing?

In the meantime, have a look here. Hope it helps.

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Gavin Big-Surname
The chief waffler and founder of PetrolBlog in 2010. Has a rather unhealthy obsession with cars from the 80s and 90s, and is on a one-man mission to collect the cars nobody else wants. Also likes tea and Hobnobs.


  1. September 27, 2011

    My pet hate is drivers flashing lights. How can these idiots that think I am going 30mph in a 30mph just to annoy them can flash their headlights all day long, but seemingly cannot use their other lights – indicators, at roundabouts and slip roads? I agree with the author’s point – as a newly qualified driver myself, I can also add that even when sitting at 60mph in the ‘slow lane’, I have experienced trucks flashing their lights and horns, although the middle lane is empty. I am not having a go at truckers – car drivers can be just as bad, but bear in mind that if I am in front of you and have to take evasive action, what will the resulting accident be like?! I have even experienced impatient drivers when in a clearly visible driving school car – so these impatient gits were always perfect drivers? i found that more people would tailgate me when I had my ‘P’ plates on the car, when I removed them, I found that other drivers’ road rage lessened to an extent. I do think that further post-test training, such as the Advanced course, should be compulsory to improve driver respect and appreciation that a car is a dangerous weapon. I am preparing to start the IAM programme – which is proven to improve driver confidence and safety. We are all guilty of road rage. We should all remember what it is like learning to drive – and that reacting in an angry manner actually causes extra wear on our beloved motors (well that is what sometimes reigns me in!)

    • September 27, 2011

      It’s good to hear the perpective from a newly qualified driver – thank you. There’s a definite lack of tolerance for learners / newly qualified drivers on the road. Yes, we might be in a hurry to get somewhere, but a learner has to start somewhere. And as you say, we were all there once.


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