Yellow means “Go very fast!”

Caleb and Robb and others are in the midst of a good discussion over here on the fine line between preparedness and paranoia.

My two cents (well, 1.2 cents, now that ObamaCare has passed…):

1. Yes, I admit, I called myself a “sheepdog” in the past. Since then, I’ve realized an important point: Sheepdogs are the paid employees of the shepherd.

However, what I do, I do for the flock. I am not outside of the family, I am part of the family. Therefore (to stretch the analogy to the breaking point) I am a ram who’s willing to use his horns, and not a sheepdog.

2: The two most powerful machines I own are my firearms and my cars. Both of these, when improperly used, are capable of doing horrific levels of violence on innocent people, and (as anyone who’s read Larry Niven knows) of the two, a car is the deadlier weapon.

So how come I don’t say to myself “This might be the day I get hit by a garbage truck” when I get behind the wheel?

Because I drive defensively behind the wheel, not at home.

I don’t “game out” scenarios at home late at night, wondering “what if a pickup truck goes through the red light at the off ramp of Rural Road and the 101?”. I don’t watch YouTube videos of traffic accidents trying to learn something from other people’s misfortune and I don’t sit in front of the computer trying to glean accident-avoidance tips from Bob Bondurant.  I need to get better at defensive driving (who doesn’t?), so yes, a trip to driving school is in my future. I hope.

In the meantime, I drive defensively, and I try to practice those skills every single time I get behind the wheel.

I don’t drive angry. I de-escalate when someone acts like a jerk. I don’t drink and drive. I keep an eye out for the unexpected from when I back out of the driveway until I turn off the ignition.

Sound familiar?

We know how to do this stuff when we’re driving. If we do it when we’re carrying, we’ll all be just fine.