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BimmerJerks are a scientifically proven fact

August 14, 2013 - Paul Giannamore
My family will tell you that I have long held the position that people who drive BMWs are jerks.

I usually say this as a big, shiny BMW is blowing by me in the left lane of the Fort Pitt Tunnels at about 95 mph at night, when traffic is light.

Well, I am not the anti-rich old man in the little PT Cruiser (hey, Enrico was repaired and came back to me Tuesday afternoon!). In fact, I would love to drive a shiny, black Germanic car that vaguely resembles the Kaiser’s helmet. At least, that’s kind of what I think Mercedes styling has devolved to nowadays, though I admit the BMWs look much better now that they’re not styled like 20-year-old Chrysler Cirrus. Anyway, my point has been scientifically proven by the University of California-Berkeley, home of the hippies. It’s probably a slanted study, given the place of its origin, but it proves my theory, so, this centrist will hop on the data like a lefty or righty parsing a presidential speech into molecules for talk-show and letter to the editor fodder.

Monitored were a crosswalk, as a pedestrian would appear, and a four-way stop. About 80 percent of drivers did the right thing, stopping for the pedestrian and waiting their turn at the stop sign. But the drivers of new and shiny big cars, especially Bimmers and Mercedes cars, bullied their way through the stop sign without waiting their turn, and drove through the crosswalk. A researcher told a blogger at the New York Times that no “beater” level car ever ran through the crosswalk. Everyone driving a low-dollar, older car stopped. And the researcher is quoted in the Wall Street Journal as saying the Bimmer drivers were the worst.


A few weeks ago, I absolutely became convinced that the BMW jerk-driver disease had spread to the drivers of new F-150s, various Cadillacs, Acuras, Audis, Infinitis, Lexii (Lexuses sounds odd) and Mercedes-Benz vehicles. In short, I feared I was adapting a crazy anti-rich-guy car attitude, absolutely not something I wanted to do, but the evidence was kind of irrefutable. There we were, stuck in Mr. Sulu, the Honda of The Boss (at home) in a 2-1/2-hour traffic jam because I had forgotten the Squirrel Hill Tunnels outbound were closed. We were in the unmoving right lane, a mile or more from the tunnel. In the left lane was an endless stream of shiny, new, expensive vehicles, occasionally interrupted by a high-end F-150 Platinum truck (seems Diamond White paint on any vehicle also indicates driver jerkhood) or some outrageously huge sport utes.

Our lane of lowly used vehicles and new economy cars was stopped largely because all the BimmerJerks as I now will call them in a generic term were going all the way ahead of us and then forcing their way into the right lane. A few of them passed us on the berm, doing the same thing. A true sense of “what are these Civics doing on the same road as us” sense of entitlement was what I sensed.

I am absolutely not claiming to have had science or random sampling or anything vaguely like the methods of pollsters at work. Just an completely biased, miserable observation while stuck in traffic on a rainy day in Pittsburgh.

Oh, lest you think I’m too biased as some kind of anti-money, liberal, save the planet from us humans beings type, I note here that the study also found Prius drivers were just as bad as the BimmerJerks. So, not only do they slowly hog up the left lane trying to get their geekmobile up to speed to pass, they also will mow you down like a Mercedes on its way to the golf course, should you dip a toe into the street in front of them.

Thank God Enrico came back in service Tuesday afternoon. Nobody will ever do a story on wood-sided Electric Blue PT Cruisers and the bald old guy in the Hawaiian shirt driving them. Ever. In my mind, I'll be forever tooling along in my automobile, sunroof open, listening to the Beach Boys in the right lane.

And laughing at the BimmerJerks' auto payments.


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