Monday, April 25, 2005

Bark: Why videogaming isn't a complete waste of time

My Other Half and I were visiting friends in Essex over the weekend, and I had a very close call on the M25 just short of the M11, when a complete and utter muppet decided he wanted to be in the same space my car was currently occupying in the outside lane.

The traffic was fairly heavy, but still doing around 65-70mph in the outside lane, and I'm keeping an eye on the traffic around me, because I basically don't trust other drivers about as far as I could chuck their cars. I'm fully alongside this guy in a 15 year old Ford Scorpio, and I see him starting to drift out of his lane, without indicating. I sound my horn for about 5 seconds to warn him I'm there, because he clearly hadn't seen me, but you'd think at least he could hear me, right? Wrong. He puts on his indicator and steers out FASTER. I have to take avoiding action into the central reservation, which thankfully isn't just an armco barrier, but has a couple of metres of run-off before one of those wire rope barriers. So I'm half-straddling the central reservation and the outside lane of the motorway, and slam on the anchors, before ducking back onto the carriageway, missing the barrier by all of about 8 inches. The guy behind me must've had kittens when he saw this idiot pull out on me, because he had absolutely nowhere to go if I'd hit the barrier, and would have collected me, probably with rather fatal consequences, given the speeds involved.

It's a testament to all those dozens of hours I've put in on Project Gotham 2 and Rallisport Challenge 2 that I've got the speed of thought and the speed of reaction to have that happen and avoid any damage to the car at all. It all happened so fast that it's all down to innate car control ability; something I've finely honed on the above games over the last few months. I don't know if the guy in the Scorpio was drunk, on drugs or just willfully stupid, but he's going to be sorry that I had the presence of mind to take his registration. G606 BLF, you're going to get a very nasty surprise in the next day or two...
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