I was driving into town to get an oil change, and I was in the mini-van all by myself. I was cruising along on a route that I've been on hundreds of times. And that's when I did it...I almost got into the carpool lane!
|The HOV lane calls to me.|
I love the carpool lane. I drive in the carpool lane whenever I can. It's great. It's less crowded. I don't have to worry about changing lanes. I can (usually) go at a pretty good rate of speed. And so, as I was zooming down the freeway I automatically drifted over toward the carpool lane. But, no one else was in my car to do any pooling.
I'm not used to driving by myself. I've got four kids. And a wife. I've also got a few other relatives and/or friends who occasionally ride with me. (Yes, I do have friends!) It's pretty rare when I'm in the van by myself. So, I can almost always legally drive in the carpool lane.
|Usually not a problem.|
Sometimes I wonder if I should use the carpool lane if it's just me and the kids. I mean, none of them can drive, so it's not like I'm keeping another vehicle off of the road by having them ride with me. But, it says "2 or more persons" are required for carpool lane, and my kids, even if they can't drive, are definitely persons, despite their small size and the fact that they occasionally growl like animals.
Since I usually have five other people in the van with me, haven't I built up enough of an extra-rider surplus that would excuse a little jaunt into the carpool lane? I could get away with it, couldn't I? After all, I'm in a mini-van; who would pull over the driver of a mini-van for being in the carpool lane? How often is anyone actually in a mini-van by themselves? It's called the HOV lane. Did you know that HOV stands for "high occupancy vehicle?" And isn't a mini-van the epitome of a high occupancy vehicle, even if only one person is occupying it?
There were a lot of reasons and excuses why I might drive in the carpool lane--but I just couldn't do it. I'm not a very good outlaw. Maybe some day I'll get rebellious enough to cruise in the carpool lane by myself. And that could lead to crossing the double white lines. (You know, real criminal behavior.) After that...who knows?
(Heck, I'm just two or three steps away from robbing a bank!)
Edited from a post originally published on 7/7/2017.