For some reason, the AA have conducted a survey on the causes of in-car arguments, and you will not be surprised to learn that getting lost was the number one reason given, followed by backseat driving and running late.
hile this rings true, up to a point, we can't help feeling the AA missed an opportunity to really explore the gamut of in-car hostilities - because, in our experience, these are just the basic set. There are many more rows you are more likely to have and you don't need to be lost to have them. You may find some of these familiar...
Also known as 'surging', or 'sicky driving' - that is, applying inconsistent pressure to the accelerator, resulting in a push-me-pull-you sensation for the passengers. This one is different from backseat driving because it's about technique, and apparently criticising technique is more irritating than issuing instructions such as, "You're in the wrong lane". Or, "Move over, we're practically in the ditch on my side". Or, "Did you see him? It didn't look like you did".
For example, holding the steering wheel like a member of the ariostocracy might have held a peacock feather, e.g. barely at all with two fingers, which is not enough in our opinion. Or, alternatively, absentmindedly gazing out of the window and then back over their shoulder, sometimes for up to four seconds.
Why you are keeping the radio on when you are going up and down through dips and dales, drifting in and out of reception (rather than turning it off or trying to find a local station), so that you are getting every ninth line of 'Bohemian Rhapsody', and every time's a shock?
Having a better parking plan
In our experience, male drivers often elect to park in the least suitable place, such as the only flooded section of the street or the tight-squeeze spot, half a mile from where you need to be. Them having made the car look and smell like a fresher's bedroom, including: old Starbucks cups; flapjack crumbs; greasy paper bags; muddy fliers; gym kit from 2019; peanut butter brittle with a bite out of it.
Not sticking on the tax disc
Which was sliding around on the dashboard for months, and now - would you believe - appears to have gone missing.
Not filling up
Why not sometimes do it before the red line has been glowing for an unspecified time? Why not keep a rough eye on the petrol guage? And why pretend, when it is pointed out that the car urgently requires fuel, that you know that, thank you, when your darting eyes tell another story?
Why is the '_ _ _' still in the car?
The sleeping bag; the youngest one's best friend's art project; the old dog basket. Why say you'll get rid of it, if, in fact, you are just going to hold on to it for a year or two and hope they forget?
Instruction manual out of the glove box
Why is it not in the glove compartment of the car so that someone can identify the meaning of the 'lighthouse with the black cross and jagged peaks' symbol that is now flashing constantly? What if flames start licking out of the bonnet (because that has happened before)? And anyway, who ignores flashing symbols on the dashboard? What are you waiting for, a claxon?
Why was it our turn to drive?
On the night when our pals brought out their delicious "saving it for a special occasion" wine and also had invited the fun sexy actor? And why can't we have a "back to you!" signal on those occasions?
Those are the regular in-car arguments, anyway. ©The Telegraph