Buckle Your Seat Belt. It’s Cooler Than You Might Think.

A little background on why I’m writing this:
On June 2, I posted this on twitter.
Last weekend, a couple high school kids were killed, and one seriously injured in car accidents. None were wearing seat belts.

I’ve had my head cracked on the dashboard of a ’68 Camaro once. I had a lap belt on, or it probably would’ve been the windshield. That was before wearing a seat belt was the law. Mom was a ICU/CCU nurse, so she passed on the wisdom of what she’d seen.

When I was 15, I snuck out with Mom’s car, and went and picked up a buddy. There was about 8″ of slushy snow on the roads. I gunned the engine as I rounded a corner, and locked up the brakes as I slid out of control into a tree. Needless to say, I didn’t get the signature I needed to start driving at 16.

I’ve been in a few accidents since then, only one involving a collision, where a woman deliberately hit me in the company truck to get insurance money. I got the ticket, and from then on racked up a lot of speeding tickets, but I never got hit again. I did blow out all of the brake wheel cylinders in my old Pontiac after avoiding a car that slid through an intersection and then backed into traffic, (traffic being me, in this case). Now that I think about it, I did have a ’57 Chevy bumper tag me once, but I try to block the memory of that little bruise to my ego. The point is, I’ve always worn my seat belt, other than the time I took a ride in a buddy’s ’64 Le Mans, which didn’t come with seat belts. I gripped the sides of the seat for pretty much the whole ride. I don’t like the feeling of not being secured to the vehicle.

A good example would be the time I thought it’d be a good idea to protect the bed of a truck by putting down some paper before stacking about 300 pounds of cement bags in the back. I hit the brakes, the paper went on a magic carpet ride, and 300 pounds of cement slammed into the bulkhead of the truck at probably 25-30 mph. Try it some time, you might get a new appreciation for the importance of securing your load.

I’ve got a few friends who fly F-16s, and I kind of think of them sometimes when I’m driving. I guess I have an active imagination. If, for a second, you’re tempted to think that wearing a seatbelt is uncool, I have to wonder, do you think you’re cooler than an F-16 pilot by not wearing one?

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